Florida Surges Past Kentucky for Big Blue Slam Lead Jan. 24, 2023

Both KBC and LifeSouth Improved Upon Their First Day Numbers on Tuesday

Florida leads Kentucky 512-501 after two days of Big Blue Slam 2023.

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Despite an increase in donations on day two of Big Blue Slam, Kentucky fell behind in the five-day competition with a big Florida surge. LifeSouth Community Blood Center registered 269 donors in Florida on Tuesday to take a 512-501 lead over Kentucky. A total of 254 donors registered with Kentucky Blood Center on day two.

“This competition with the Gators is always tight, so this isn’t surprising to see Florida claw back,” said Mandy Brajuha, vice president of external relations for KBC. “If you’re considering donating this week, you could be the difference in a win or loss for Big Blue Nation. Most importantly, that decision to try and beat our rivals can also be the difference in someone’s life at one of our local hospitals.”

Ultimately, that’s what Big Blue Slam is all about. The 15th annual competition taps into the passion of fans from Kentucky and Florida to put blood in the shelves during traditionally meager collection months. Donor turnout typically decreases during the holidays, and then wintry weather that forces drive cancellations and fosters illnesses often results in a low supply of lifesaving blood for local hospitals and patients.

Donors in Kentucky still have three days to make a Big Blue Slam impact. KBC’s eight donor centers will be open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., and mobile drives will be available in select areas throughout the state, including on the University of Kentucky campus. All Big Blue Slam availability can be found at kybloodcenter.org/events/big-blue-slam-2023.

All donors will receive a 'Basketball School' shirt and be entered to win two tickets to the UK-Florida game on Feb. 4 at Big Blue Slam.

As a thank you for donating, donors will receive a gray “Basketball School” long-sleeve shirt and be entered to win two lower-level tickets to the UK-Florida men’s basketball game in Rupp Arena on Feb. 4. A blue “Football School” long-sleeve shirt was provided to donors for Big Blue Crush in November.

KBC is seeking the first three-year winning streak in the event. Kentucky owns an 8-6 advantage in the friendly series vs. Florida.

All blood collected at KBC during Slam and throughout the year goes to local patients at more than 70 hospitals in Kentucky. One in four people will need a blood transfusion in their lifetime. Blood cannot artificially manufactured, so donors are needed daily.

Blood donors must be at least 17 years old (16 with parental consent), weigh at least 110 pounds, be in general good health, show a photo I.D. and meet additional requirements. Sixteen-year-old donors must have a signed parental permission slip, which can be found at kybloodcenter.org.

Donors can schedule an appointment at kybloodcenter.org or call 800.775.2522. Appointments are highly encouraged during Big Blue Slam. Walk-ins will be accepted as space allows.

About Kentucky Blood Center

Celebrating 55 years of saving lives in Kentucky, KBC is the largest independent, full-service, nonprofit blood center in Kentucky. Licensed by the FDA, KBC’s sole purpose is to collect, process and distribute blood for patients in Kentucky. KBC provides services in 90 Kentucky counties and has donor centers in Lexington, Louisville, Frankfort, Pikeville, Somerset and the Tri-County area.