SAAC t-shirt drive yields harvest of 550

Nov. 1, 2012

The first half of the 2012-13 Big Sky Conference Student-Athlete Advisory Council (SAAC) Conference Cup t-shirt drive is complete, and Montana's efforts over a two-week period in October brought in over 550 t-shirts that will be donated to Missoula's Poverello Center.

The annual Conference Cup is a way for each of the Big Sky Conference school's Student-Athlete Advisory Council to both help their local communities and engage in some friendly competition with one another.

Each school's representatives met last summer and decided on a t-shirt drive for this year's community-service project. Last year it was a canned food drive.

Montana student-athletes collected t-shirts at UM's home volleyball matches on Oct. 19-20 and the Griz football game last Saturday against Idaho State.

Earlier this week SAAC members sorted, folded and counted the 550-plus t-shirts, and they are only halfway done. Each school will also have a two-week window to collect t-shirts in the spring. Each school will send in its numbers to the league office, and the winner will take possession of the Conference Cup.

Montana State currently holds the Cup after collecting the most goods during last year's canned food drive.

Montana junior tennis player Maddy Murray, one of SAAC's co-presidents along with Lady Griz junior Jordan Sullivan, views her involvement in SAAC as a critical part of her student-athlete experience.

"I love being involved in community-minded projects like this, because it shows people that athletes do more than just play their sport," she said.

"Even though we're busy, (all the members of SAAC) feel it's important to help out the community and try to be involved in more than just our nuclear little worlds. It's easy to get really self-centered, and projects like this allow you to reach beyond just yourself."

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