SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – For the third-straight year, The Summit League is extending its “Food Fight” initiative to the league basketball championships, March 9-12, in Sioux Falls, S.D. Fans attending tournament games are invited to bring food to donate.
Food will be collected all four days of the tournament, beginning Saturday, March 9, through the championship games on Tuesday, March 12. Feeding South Dakota will be at the Sioux Falls Arena to help facilitate the food drive and donations will go to the Sioux Falls Food Pantry. Every fan that brings in a non-perishable food item or donates cash at the Feeding South Dakota booth gets a chance to spin The Summit League Prize Wheel for a gift. (One spin per fan, per day.)
“Every year the Summit Basketball Tournament gets bigger, better and more exciting,” said Jim Dawson of Feeding South Dakota. “We are very proud and honored that they have chosen Feeding South Dakota to support again this year while they are in Sioux Falls. Last year, Feeding South Dakota distributed over 12.5 million pounds of food and grocery items to over 350 hunger relief agencies throughout the state. Without organizations like The Summit League, we could not do what we do.”
The event, which marks the third year of its kind at The Summit League Basketball Championships, is an extension of a five-year league-wide drive. Each year, 20 “Food Fight” games are designated during the basketball season with each host school having exactly one week to collect food and/or cash donations and two weeks if the date features both a men’s and women’s basketball game. At the end of the Food Fight schedule, the school that raises the most amount of food, measured in pounds, is deemed the winner and awarded The Summit League Food Fight trophy.
In conjunction with this year’s “Food Fight” games, the league held its first-ever viral video challenge. Each school was asked to create a viral video that depicts life as a student-athlete. Fans were asked to vote for their favorite video on The Summit League YouTube Channel. After a month of voting, fans picked South Dakota State as the winner. SDSU will receive a trophy and $770 (equal to 2,002 lbs.) to their final Food Fight total.
The winner of the 2012-13 Food Fight trophy will be announced later this month after final totals are calculated.
In the program’s four years, over 148,300 lbs. of food has been collected. Oakland University holds a league-best two Food Fight titles after being named the inaugural champion in 2008-09 and winning again in 2010-11. South Dakota State University claimed the 2009-10 Food Fight title, while Southern Utah University won last year’s title.
ABOUT THE SUMMIT LEAGUE
Entering its fourth decade of Division I athletics, The Summit League offers 19 championship sports and has a combined enrollment of over 144,000 at nine universities, four of which are located in top 58 U.S. metro populations (Detroit, Indianapolis, Kansas City and Omaha). Member institutions include: Fort Wayne (Indiana-Purdue-Fort Wayne), IUPUI (Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis), Kansas City (University of Missouri-Kansas City), North Dakota State University, Oakland University, Omaha (University of Nebraska Omaha), the University of South Dakota, South Dakota State University and Western Illinois University. Previously known as the Mid-Continent Conference, The Summit League rebranded in 2007 and has since produced 54 All-Americans, 37 Academic All-America selections and seven NCAA Championships. For more information about the league and its history, visit www.thesummitleague.org to "See The Summit" or follow on Twitter @thesummitleague.
ABOUT FEEDING SOUTH DAKOTA
Feeding South Dakota is the state’s largest charitable hunger relief organization whose mission is to eliminate hunger in South Dakota with distribution centers in Sioux Falls, Pierre and Rapid City. In 2012, Feeding South Dakota secured and distributed over 12.5 million pounds of quality nutritious donated and purchased food providing 10.4 million meals to individuals in need. Feeding South Dakota is able to distribute this food through its network of more than 350 charitable organizations across the state. These organizations then provide this food to individuals who are “food insecure” through youth programs, senior centers, on-site feeding programs, emergency food pantries, after school programs, and homeless shelters. For more information on Feeding South Dakota, please visit www.feedingsouthdakota.org.