By: Ryan Wooley
After learning of the news today that Michigan Athletic David Brandon said the University would not be able to get the Michigan Marching Band to Texas for the season opener against Alabama, I find myself disgusted at the reason.
It has always been tradition for the Marching Band to take part in all home games and not travel to all of the Wolverines road games, but would take part in the big ones on the road like Ohio State, Michigan State, Notre Dame and of course the Bowl game. So I ask the question, how is the September 1st showdown not considered a big one?
It’s the opening game to the 2012 season, it’s down at Cowboy Stadium in front of another 100,000 people, and it’s against the defending National Champions in Alabama! Could it get any bigger than that!?
David Brandon says the reason they won’t be taking the band is because it would cost $400,000 to transport them, which amounts to double what it costs to get the team down there. Yet, Michigan is set to earn a $4.7 Million payday for playing the Crimson Tide. Anyone else see something wrong with this picture?
To make matters worse, the band was originally told they were going and the contract Brandon signed evened designated seats for the band. Now with the band being forced to stay home, family members that had made arrangements to attend the game and see their son or daughter perform are left with just a ticket to the game—if they still want to go.
I know some people will say big deal as the band is just a side show to the game, and I understand your view to a point. However, you can’t tell me whenever you have stepped into the Big House, Spartan Stadium, or any other stadium that has had a live marching band that they don’t add to the atmosphere and get you pumped. They help make the game what it is.
I mean seriously, can you imagine on September 1st Denard Robinson running down the sidelines for a 60 yard touchdown and all you hear is fans cheering and no Victors being played? Or Michigan wins in dramatic fashion and at the end of the game there is no band to approach and sing the Fight Song with?
That is a travesty.
I really hope that head Coach Brady Hoke or someone within the Athletic Department steps up and says they will foot the bill to Texas, because as of now, David Brandon looks incompetent and found a way to shame the University more than Rich Rod ever did.
I urge everyone to get behind this whether you like Michigan or not. There should never be a case where the band is left behind for a big game, and I think that is something even the Wolverines biggest rivals can agree on.
If you would like to voice your displeasure about the issue, the Marching Band has already created a hashtag on Twitter: #MMBtoDallas.
Follow Ryan Wooley on Twitter: @WooleyMammoth85