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Winston-Salem State is all set to take on N.C. A&T.

But it’s not a football or basketball game. It’s something more important than that — a blood drive.

This is a friendly competition between WSSU and N.C. A&T as to which school can collect the most pints of blood.

The blood drive on WSSU’s campus will be taking place Wednesday from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. in room 207 of the Thompson Center. N.C. A&T’s blood drive has been scheduled to take place in February.

Who knows if WSSU and N.C. A&T will ever play football against each other again, but the chance to help save lives is something both schools can agree on.

John Lavender, who is the athletics trainer at WSSU, says it’s definitely a friendly competition between the two HBCU’s.

“We just want to encourage people from our campus and the community of Winston-Salem to come out and show some Ram pride,” Lavender said.

New this year at WSSU is a Red Cross Club, which helps facilitate blood drives.

“Our student trainers are also part of the process and the Red Cross Club has also joined forces with us to try and promote the event,” Lavender said. “The big thing is to just let folks know this is happening.”

According to the American Red Cross, one out of every 500 African-American births is affected by sickle cell disease, which may require regular blood transfusions to prevent complications.

Lavender said WSSU likely will have another blood drive on campus in the spring.

“The competition with A&T will be for the whole school year,” Lavender said.

All donors on Wednesday will receive an American Red Cross T-shirt, a free haircut coupon from Sports Clips and a buy-one-get-one coupon for tickets to Spookywoods in Kersey Valley.

To make an appointment, go to www.redcrossblood.org and enter the sponsor code of WSSU.

For more information, call the Red Cross at 1-800-733-2767.

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jdell@wsjournal.com

(336) 727-4081

@johndellWSJ

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