For more than 30 years, students and fans of the University of Michigan and Ohio State University have taken their battle off the field to help save lives through an annual Blood Battle.
Through Nov. 21, the archrivals will partner with the American Red Cross to see which university's supporters can donate the most blood. Blood Battle has highlighted the first weeks of November leading up to the day the schools face off on the football field every year since 1981.
"Michigan has won the Blood Battle the last four years, and hopes to continue the streak," said Tiffany Gradel, spokeswoman for the American Red Cross. "Ohio State had taken home the traveling trophy for five consecutive years from 2003 to 2007, and is eager to regain it."
Blood Battle drives generate thousands of blood donations for the Red Cross every year.
"The competition really motivates fans to donate blood at a key time," Gradel said. "It provides an important boost for the blood supply as the Thanksgiving holiday approaches. During the busy holiday season it's important not to forget the constant need for blood donors."
In addition to the chance to support their favorite team, donors in the Western Lake Erie Region through Nov. 18 can enter to win a pair of tickets to the OSU vs. UM game Nov. 24.
Results of this year's Blood Battle are to be announced at the game.