On November 19, one night before the teams battle on the basketball court, the Miami University men’s basketball program partnered with the Xavier University men’s basketball program to share Thanksgiving joy with Avondale families by giving away turkeys at Gabriel’s Place.

The event was coordinated by the Avondale Comprehensive Development Corporation (ACDC). “We are humbled that these teams would come to our neighborhood and share the joy of the holiday with our families. It means the world to us and we are very grateful,” said ACDC Executive Director Ozie Davis III.

Avondale, a recent recipient of the HUD Choice Neighborhood grant, is a neighborhood in the midst of a renaissance, yet, poverty and unemployment rates remain high. By providing free turkeys, both men’s basketball teams assisted families with their Thanksgiving Holiday meal. Families were selected on the basis of need by the Hirsch Recreation Center, Gabriel’s Place and ACDC. They joined the teams at 7 p.m. on Tuesday night at Gabriel’s Place and were also given free vouchers to return to Gabriel’s Place Farmer’s Market on Thursday from 4-6 p.m. to complete their holiday meal. 

“It’s important we give back, and this serves a greater purpose in understanding what giving is all about and being selfless,” said Miami head coach John Cooper. “This is a great cause, and typically these types of things are highlighted during this time of year, and we have so many people who are in need throughout the entire year. It’s just small token from the Miami program and from Xavier’s program to give back.”

Miami travels to Xavier for an 8 p.m. game on Wednesday, Nov. 20 The game will be televised on FoxSports1.