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Food Banks Set To Win At Utah/BYU Football Game

November 7, 2003 — It’s one of the biggest rivalries in college football, but the University of Utah and Brigham Young University can agree on one thing, it’s time to get tough with hunger. For the tenth year in a row, both schools will raise food for the needy centered on their annual football game. The Utah/BYU Food Drive will run from Nov. 10, until kick-off of the big game at 1 p.m., Nov. 22.

Football fans are encouraged to bring non-perishable food and cash donations to Rice-Eccles Stadium for Utah’s last home game vs. Wyoming on Nov. 15, and then to Lavell Edwards Stadium in Provo for the Utah/BYU Game on Nov. 22. People can also drop off food or money at the downtown tailgate party before the Utah/Wyoming game, hosted by The Gateway, selected U of U and BYU campus locations, and Smith’s grocery stores throughout the Wasatch Front, excluding Cache and Weber Counties.

The Gallivan Center will also be taking donations during the Utah/BYU game. Football fans are invited to bring non-perishable food or money and enjoy the game on two big screen TV’s. The “viewing party” will be held under the main stage with lot’s of free giveways.

This is the tenth year in a row that the food drive has been held. It benefits the Utah Food Bank, United Way of Utah County, and thousands of needy Utahns. Jim Pugh, director of the Utah Food Bank, says he depends on this program each year. “The Utah Food Bank continues to be challenged with meeting hunger needs in Utah. The Utah/BYU Food Drive is a great way for the community to support the food bank and help meet the needs of those less fortunate in our state. We are excited about the drive that the University of Utah Alumni Association and BYU are coordinating to raise awareness and raise food to fight hunger in our community,” said Pugh.

The Utah/BYU food drive seems to grow and become more effective each year. Hundreds of tons of food have been raised since the program began a decade ago. Last year’s effort raised a lot of food, but also nearly $8,000 in cash.

The Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) awarded the organizers of last year’s campaign the 2003 “Circle of Excellence” award for outstanding community service. Utah football coach Urban Meyer is encouraging everyone to make this year’s food drive even better. “We all want to win on the field, but there are things more important than any football game. I hope everyone will give as much as they can to make sure those who need something to eat, don’t have to go hungry,” said Meyer.