West Virginia University students will be bleeding more than gold and blue before the Backyard Brawl WVU s annual gridiron match-up with Pitt.

The Mountaineer Maniacs are holding their third annual WVU vs. Pitt Blood Drive competition from 1 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 9, in the Mountainlair Ballrooms.

A second blood driveTuesday, Nov. 16, from 1 to 7 p.m. at Lyon Tower on the Evansdale campuswill also count toward the contest.

Every year before the Backyard Brawl, students at WVU and the University of Pittsburgh engage in some friendly competition to see who can collect more blood for the American Red Cross. The winning school will be awarded a trophy during the Thursday, Nov. 25, WVU -Pitt football game at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh.

While winning the competition is important to us, the real winner here is the Red Cross,said Mary Olive, executive board member of the Mountaineer Maniacs.Three people can potentially benefit from every person who donates blood. There is a currently a shortage of blood, so it is very important for people to donate.

She encourages all community members, regular blood donors and Mountaineer

fans to get involved in the blood drives.

Lets beat Pitt on and off the field,Olive said.Come out and support a good cause while supporting the West Virginia Mountaineers.

Refreshments will be provided, and there will be free T-shirts while supplies last.

Donors must be at least 17 years old, weigh 105 pounds and be in good health. For a complete list of requirements or to schedule an appointment, go to the Red Cross Web site athttp://www.redcrosslife.org.