RICHMOND, Va. (September 14, 2010) - The ninth-annual Colonial Athletic Association Blood Challenge takes place again this Fall, having developed into one of the conference's most important public service projects. The CAA Blood Challenge has raised 22,101 units of blood over the past eight years, which has helped to save 66,303 lives.

"The success of the CAA Blood Challenge is a source of pride for the conference and its member institutions," CAA Commissioner Tom Yeager said. "The event grows each year and we have been overwhelmed by the enthusiasm and participation on each of our campuses.  I applaud the institutions for undertaking this life-saving project."

Each CAA institution designates one day during the Fall to conduct a campus-wide blood drive. With the assistance of local blood service centers, a count is kept of all people who donate blood on that day. Based on those numbers, the CAA determines a winner and presents a trophy to that institution. The 2009 event resulted in 4,202 actual donors and 4,373 productive units of blood from the 12 CAA campuses, which represented a 20 percent increase over the 2008 totals and almost four times the amount collected during the inaugural blood challenge in 2002.

Drexel University won the CAA Blood Challenge for the fourth consecutive year in 2009 with 861 actual donors, which resulted in 859 productive units of blood collected.  All 12 CAA institutions had at least 135 donors participate in the program and eight collected more than 250 units of blood.  The University of Delaware, which won the first four CAA Blood Challenges, placed second a year ago with 740 donors, while VCU was third with 466 donors and Georgia State placed fourth with 347 donors.

The CAA Blood Challenge was developed by the league presidents as a fun way to emphasize the critical importance of donating blood. Each institution promotes the event on campus and encourages student groups, faculty, staff and alumni to participate and support their school.

The blood drive dates on each CAA campus are as follows:

Sept. 7, 2010 College of William and Mary
Sept. 22, 2010 Virginia Commonwealth University
Sept. 23, 2010 UNC Wilmington
Sept. 29, 2010 Georgia State
Oct. 12, 2010 Hofstra
Oct. 21, 2010 Drexel
Oct. 25, 2010 Towson
Nov. 2, 2010 James Madison
Nov. 4, 2010 Old Dominion
Nov. 15, 2010 George Mason
Nov. 17, 2010 University of Delaware
November TBD Northeastern University