A total of 88 Ohio University student-athletes recognized the invaluable contributions of Ohio Bobcat Club members by taking part in the organization’s annual Thank-a-Thon at Peden Stadium March 26-27.

Members from all 16 Ohio University varsity athletics teams placed calls and distributed hand-written thank you notes to thank Bobcat supporters for their assistance throughout the 2013-14 season.

For the University’s student-athletes, it’s a way to make new connections while showing appreciation for those individuals and families that help make athletics at Ohio a reality.

“It’s so much fun. Last year was the first time I did it,” senior track All-American Juli Accurso (Casstown, Ohio) said. “It was really neat because I didn’t recognize anybody’s name on the list. One of the people I ended up calling was Coach [Elmore Banton], who was a former NCAA champion at Ohio and coached here for 23 years.”

“During the phone call, I made the connection that this was the man I heard all about. It’s through interactions like that that we can connect to the community that gives so much support back to you. You come out of it with new relationships that you can keep fostering during your time at Ohio.”

Ohio men’s basketball senior guard Travis Wilkins (Springfield, Mo.) has made similar connections with supporters in Missouri and California during his two years participating in the Thank-a-Thon. Wilkins sees the program as an excellent way to thank Ohio Bobcat Club supporters for their contributions to the basketball program.

“Members help our program so much. Not only do our players benefit from the support, but it has a big influence on recruiting when potential student-athletes see our facilities that members have helped fund,” Wilkins said.

This past week, the 88 student-athletes on hand combined to make 1,052 phone calls and write 262 letters to show their appreciation for a year’s worth of giving and contributions.

“It’s special because it’s an opportunity to give back to those that have given so much to us and given us the chance to play for an elite University,” men’s basketball sophomore forward Treg Setty (Maysville, Ky.) said. “To be able to put on a uniform and represent something that’s so much bigger than us individually, it’s a great experience and all a direct result of our athletics community’s contributions to the Ohio Bobcat Club.”