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Ohio State, Michigan battle for blood

Ohio State beat Michigan in this year’s rivalry football game, but the Buckeyes also defeated the Wolverines in the annual American Red Cross Blood Battle for the first time since 2007.
The friendly competition between the two schools aims to see which side can donate the most blood leading up to The Game. The end of the competition left OSU with 2,364 donations of blood, while Michigan had 2,211 donations.
With only 153 more donations than Michigan, OSU reclaimed the trophy that had escaped it since a winning streak from 2003 to 2007. OSU was announced as the winner at the stadium and presented with the trophy on game day.
Last year Michigan collected 2,628 donations while OSU collected 2,402. The Wolverines collected 2,615 pints of blood in 2010, while the Buckeyes only collected 2,515 pints.
OSU’s Columbus campus has a total enrollment of about 56,000 compared to Michigan’s enrollment of about 43,000.
Rodney Wilson, American Red Cross Central Ohio Blood Services spokesman, said the victory for OSU is meaningful because it will lead to more life-saving donations in the future.
“I think that this win is really significant because usually when you win one, it gives you some momentum to continue winning for a few years,” Wilson said. “The competition brings in nearly 5,000 blood donations between the two school campuses, and each of those donations can potentially help save up to three lives.”
Martha Kurtz, spokeswoman for American Red Cross Southeastern Michigan, said while the two schools go back and forth in winning the competition, the real winners every year are the patients who receive the blood.
“The blood is used for patients throughout Ohio and Michigan, and they are patients of all ages who need a second chance whether they are cancer patients, transplant patients, they have been in an accident or something else,” Kurtz said. “It’s a friendly competition that literally saves lives. The patients who receive the blood in Ohio and Michigan are the true winners.”
It was the 31st American Red Cross Blood Battle between the two schools, and some OSU students were excited to donate and help beat Michigan.
Mike Amatos, a fourth-year in political science who donated blood this year, said he wanted to beat Michigan in the Blood Battle at least once before graduating.
“I think it’s a big deal, we’ve lost every year that I’ve been here and it was good to win at least once while I was here,” Amatos said. “I just wanted to make sure we beat Michigan.”    
The competition started in 1982, and according to the Red Cross website, OSU has won the competition 12 times.

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