The rivalry between the University of South Carolina and Clemson heats up every year when their football teams take the field to play one another. For students, faculty, alumni, and fans at these universities it also means it is time to give back by giving blood.
The Carolina Clemson Blood Drive celebrated its 29th year with a special twist, a tiebreaker. Both the Gamecocks and the Tigers have won 14 drives, bringing in a total of more than 90,000 pints of blood in its 28 year history. The 2012 Carolina Clemson Blood Drive brought in 7,189 donors, with Carolina beating Clemson by only a hundred donors.
“Most people make excuses to not give blood until they need it,” said Caitlin McGuire, a senior at the University of South Carolina. “Being proactive about giving blood can potentially save the life of someone you care about.”
When the five-day blood drive opened its doors, Gamecock and Tiger fans lined up to show their support by giving blood for their team. Almost 7,500 donors gave during the drive this year, with Carolina pulling out a win over Clemson, and breaking the 14 to 14 tie between the two schools.
“If I can save up to three lives with an hour of my time, I will do it anytime,” said Frances McGill, a third year Pharmacy major at the University of South Carolina. “It only takes a little time to do a lot of good.”
The Gamecocks were awarded the coveted blood drive trophy at the Carolina Clemson game on Nov. 30 at Williams-Brice Stadium in Columbia. The Gamecocks not only won the blood drive, they also won on the football field.
Every two seconds, someone in the U.S. needs blood. Blood donated at the Carolina Clemson Blood Drive has already potentially helped 300,000 people, including accident victims, cancer patients and those undergoing surgery.
HOW TO GIVE For more information about donating blood, or to make an appointment to donate blood or platelets, please visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767). Individuals who are at least 17 years of age, 16 with parental consent, weigh at least 110 pounds and be in good health may be eligible to donate blood. Donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.