August 13, 2014 at 10:35 pm

With videos: Lions' Golden Tate, Jim Caldwell brave the 'Ice-Bucket Challenge'


Allen Park — The phenomenon is spreading — and even Lions coach Jim Caldwell is joining the social-media phenomenon of the “Ice-Bucket Challenge” for a good cause.

For the past few weeks, many athletes and celebrities have been doused by a large bucket of ice and cold water to draw awareness of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, better known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. After Lions receiver Golden Tate completed the challenge following Tuesday night’s practice, Tate issued a challenge to Caldwell.

Just after Wednesday afternoon’s practice, Caldwell accepted the challenge, letting Tate douse him with a large bucket of ice water.

“I challenge (former Colts coach) Tony Dungy, (Los Angeles Clippers guard) Chris Paul and (Ravens coach) John Harbaugh,” Caldwell said, still soaking.

The phenomenon has spread across social media. Those who refuse the challenge are encouraged to donate $100 to support research for the disease.

Caldwell’s version followed Tuesday night’s practice, when Golden Tate stayed on the field in his pads. Some Lions employees filled a Gatorade bucket with ice water and dumped it over his head.

“I think it’s a great way to raise awareness,” Tate said Tuesday. “It’s something that gets everyone interacted into it. If you choose not to accept, we expect you to donate some money for research, but it’s a way for the world to get involved, and I think it’s just kind of cool. It’s something different.”

Lions running back Reggie Bush and wide receiver Kevin Ogletree posted a video on Instagram of them jumping into an ice bath for the challenge. Among the others who have been doused with ice water are NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo and wide receiver Dez Bryant, and the entire Patriots team.

Tate accepted a nomination from his college roommate Dustin Zhang, a golfer at Notre Dame. After his turn, Tate also nominated Calvin Johnson, Seahawks receiver Jermaine Kearse and his girlfriend Elise Pollard.

“If they don’t (participate), I’m sure ALS research would love their $100,” Tate said. “I’ll make sure they do get that.”

Tate has been among the more charitable players since entering the NFL in 2010. He regularly worked with Gilda’s Club in Seattle and said he plans to find some organizations to help in Detroit on Tuesdays, the players’ day off, once the season begins.

“I think a lot of people get used to this lifestyle and they kind of take it for granted,” Tate said. “I kind of use it as a blessing. I think God’s put me on this Earth to do what I love, playing football, and the least I could do is affect people’s lives positively if I can.”

Golden Tate, a Lions wide receiver, joined a growing number of NFL players and celebrities to participate in the 'Ice Bucket Challenge,' which is raising awareness for ALS, or Lou Gehrig's disease, through social media. / Golden Tate via Instagram