The blood connection

With the return of the annual rivalry game against the University of South Carolina comes the return of another friendly competition between the Tigers and the Gamecocks. The 37th annual “Blood Bowl” is currently taking donations and The Blood Connection is relying on the build-up for this bowl game to ensure a higher turnout.

The Blood Bowl provides incentive for students from each school to donate blood to determine who has the highest donor turnout. With a combined 4,549 donations after the 2019 Blood Bowl, it serves as one of the largest collegiate blood drives nationally, according to The Blood Connection.

Donations from the Blood Bowl provide local hospitals with lifesaving blood products over the Thanksgiving holiday season. It is especially important this year, as over the past year The Blood Connection has struggled with a lack of blood donors.

“For all of us involved in the Carolina-Clemson Blood Battle, it is a tradition that we hold close to our hearts.” said Julia Ballou, co-president of the Carolina-Clemson Blood Battle Committee.

“It’s a special way for us to embrace our rivalry with our counterpart, Clemson University, and give back to our community during a time in which blood donations are historically low.”

The Blood Connection has partnered with students in Clemson’s national service fraternity, Alpha Phi Omega, for the past 25 years to assist in hosting the event. They have emphasized the importance of regular community involvement to maintain the local blood supply.

The Blood Connection encourages those who can donate to become a blood donor as low blood supply impacts local hospitals. Responsible for 75 hospitals across South Carolina, North Carolina, and Georgia, The Blood Connection must collect more than 800 units of blood a day to supply those hospitals adequately.

A higher turnout from Clemson students this year would make it the university’s 18th win, tying with the University of South Carolina’s current 18 wins.

Donations can be made at Hendrix, Bowman, Vickery, the Academic Success Center/Ag Quad, Riggs Hall and the Watt Center.

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