MANHATTAN (KSNT) – A group of K-State offensive linemen is using name, image and likeness opportunities to give back to the local community.
The veteran group is made of multiple sixth-year seniors who decided to return for one more year. Their motto when returning was ‘Bring Back the Beef.’ Now, hats and hoodies are available with this mantra on them. However, the ‘K-State Beef’ apparel supports both these student-athletes and local food shelters.
The K-State offensive linemen, in partnership with WildcatNIL, are donating food, specifically beef, with sales. For every ‘beef’ hat or hoodie purchased, one pound of beef is being donated to a local food bank.
The initiative has already helped Manhattan-area food shelters get more than 300 pounds of beef. K-State starting center Hayden Gillum says he and his teammates dropped off the first load on Friday, Sept. 29. The number of food that will be donated is well-beyond the 300 pounds already dropped off.
“We’re kind of doing it incrementally,” Gillum said. “The food banks have to hand it out and, then, we’ll restock them when they need it again. The hats and the beef [slogan] kind of came along, but we wanted a way to be able to help the community.”
He says the town that has become home for himself and his teammates is worth giving back to.
“It’s kind of special how much support our group has got and Manhattan is such an amazing town that’s had an impact on so many of us,” Gillum said. “So, it was neat that we had a way that people can support us, as well as us be able to give back to our community and the great town of Manhattan.”
At many schools, fans may not even know the names of the offensive lineman. This group has slowly become a fan-favorite within the Wildcat fanbase. To many, the guys who block up front have become as popular as the ‘skill players.’
“I think it’s special,” Gillum said. “I think it’s just K-State, man. The Ag school… it’s kind of the identity of just the hard-working Kansans and supporters of K-State, and what we do and what we believe in.”
To check out the ‘K-State Beef’ gear, click here.
This story aired on Sunday in K-Nation. K-Nation airs every Sunday night on KSNT. For more content from the weekly K-State and KU sports special, click here.