The devastating hurricane that slammed into the state of Texas and continues to wreak havoc is on the mind of nearly every American, especially those in the area.
The latest example is Texas A&M, which announced Tuesday that it will wear Hurricane Harvey stickers on their helmets for the 2017 opener against UCLA Sunday in the Rose Bowl. According to the school, more than half of the players on its roster were directly affected by the hurricane.
Stark example of why it’s not easy for Texas A&M players to focus on UCLA this week. Trayveon Williams’ mother, Joyce Davis, during Harvey: pic.twitter.com/sr1kRZlkBp
— Brent Zwerneman (@BrentZwerneman) August 30, 2017
“It’s really a tough time,” Aggie head football coach Kevin Sumlin said in quotes distributed by the school. “Now that the pictures and the videos are coming out, I think the rest of the world understands what people in this region have known for the last three days. It’s something that hits home with us with the number of players from the Gulf Coast area, and from Houston in particular, on our team. It’s a tough time for the people of Houston and the Gulf Coast, and our thoughts and prayers are with them.”
“The thought process behind the decal was to symbolize and acknowledge what happened, as well as what we’re feeling in three images combined — the universal hurricane symbol, the outline of the State of Texas, and a heart,” assistant athletics director for equipment and apparel Matt Watson said in a statement. “The heart is almost centered over Bryan/College Station and positioned to cover the majority of the areas hardest hit by Hurricane Harvey. It is intended to show that Texas shares one heartbeat and those affected are in our hearts and that they are not alone.”
In addition to the sticker, the university offered up a tangible way to help those who have been impacted by the 500-year weather event. From the program’s release:
Sumlin used his platform in front of the assembled media at his weekly football press conference to encourage people to support the American Red Cross http://www.redcross.org/donate/hurricane-harvey. Another way to help the victims of Hurricane Harvey is through http://bthoharvey.org/, which is a student-led effort that has the cooperation of over 150 Texas A&M student organizations. Their efforts include plans to raise money, relief items and to host a blood drive in conjunction with the Red Cross.