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Jeff Kolpack, Published September 17 2012

Prairie View A&M band won't be making trip to Fargo

FARGO – Prairie View A&M University is headed north this weekend, but the Panthers will be missing a world renowned component of its athletic department. The band is staying home.

A two-week suspension to the drumline section of the group will leave only football players from the Prairie View, Texas, school boarding a plane for a Saturday football game against North Dakota State at the Fargodome. The Panthers may be struggling at 0-3, but The Marching Storm band has a reputation that extends far and wide.

The drumline, known as McFunk B.O.X., that was scheduled to perform at halftime is part of an investigation being conducted by the school’s Office of Student Council, according to a university release. The plan was for McFunk B.O.X. to work in conjunction with the NDSU Gold Star Marching Band for a show that NDSU director of athletic bands Sigurd Johnson said “was going to be a great experience for our fans.”

“They would have been something new and exciting for our region,” Johnson said. “It’s very disappointing they’re not going to be able to come up.”

The NDSU and Prairie View bands were set to rehearse together Friday night and Saturday morning for the 3 p.m. kickoff. Arrangements by both music departments were made by phone with one part of the show set up for McFunk B.O.X. to do a solo 3½-minute performance between two NDSU numbers.

The original hope, Johnson said, was to bring up the entire Prairie View band, which has done television commercials and performed at the Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, Calif. It became more practical to bring the drumline, he said.

Forum reporter Jeff Kolpack can be reached at (701) 241-5546.

Kolpack’s NDSU media blog can be found

at www.areavoices.com/bisonmedia