North Texas Athletes To Help Hurricane Victims

DENTON (8/31/05) - The University of North Texas athletic department has announced that it has begun the organization of a relief effort for the victims affected by Hurricane Katrina.  Over 350 Mean Green student-athletes as well as coaches and administrators have begun a collection of funds, clothing and personal items that will be distributed to the victims and their families through a collaborative effort with the Salvation Army of Denton.     


“This is an important cause that this department and our student-athletes feel very strongly about,” Athletic Director Rick Villarreal said.  “We understand the magnitude of this tragedy and we have families within our staff and among our young people that have been directly affected by this horrendous event.  We are just trying to do our part to help.”


Donations will be accepted for the next three days beginning Thursday from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. on the concourse inside gate 4 on the west side of Fouts Field.  Mean Green student-athletes and athletic department personnel will staff the donation center. Student-athletes will also be collecting items across campus.          


In addition to the donation center, the North Texas football team will sponsor a special event following its practice at Fouts Field on Saturday morning to aid in the collection effort.  The team will hold an open practice for the public and have players available following practice to sign autographs and mingle with fans.  The team asks that anyone attending the event please bring a donation item that will be added to the collection.


“Since we were originally scheduled to be playing at LSU Saturday, we thought it would be appropriate to assist with the disaster relief effort by holding an open practice where our fans could come and help,” head football coach Darrell Dickey said.


The North Texas athletic department has a close association with several people affected by this event.  Fellow Sun Belt Conference school’s New Orleans and South Alabama have both suffered extensive losses and are continuing to evaluate the extent of the damage.  The Mean Green football team was scheduled to open the 2005 season at LSU, but was forced to postpone the game when the scope of the tragedy became apparent.  A portion of the donations will also be given to help Tulane University student-athletes who have been displaced by the storm and have currently taken shelter in the Dallas/Fort Worth area.


For more information on this project please call the North Texas Athletic office at 940-565-2789.




North Texas Mean Green