Dear Josh Buckman,
If journalistic integrity means anything to you, then please print this alternative article to your slant.
BAND PROVIDES SERVICE TO CONFERENCE BRETHREN
Thursday and Friday night, 15 members from one of Western’s two pep bands will provide a paid service to the University of Arkansas Little Rock and will provide crowd entertainment for their opening round games.
UALR cannot afford to bring their own pep band. The University of Denver was unable to secure a drumset player from their school. Western has many talented musicians capable of assisting our conference members for these events.
UALR has two primary pep songs for which WKU has arrangements of UALR’s two primary pep songs, Gimme Some Lovin’ and the Hey Cheer. The rest of the music will be selected from the band’s current book of 40 pop standards.
While Mr. Buckman would like to imply somehow that band members are committing treason for providing this service, they are actually enhancing the spirit of good will that is part of the mission of Western Kentucky University.
Also, the opportunity to earn a “little” extra cash is important to college students who typically don’t have a great deal of discretionary income. This “band for hire” practice occurs frequently at NCAA first round sites, and I don’t recall anyone criticizing those groups for providing that service.
Lastly, since there are 54 members involved in the basketball band program, and the Sunbelt [and NCAA] guidelines only permit 30 students to participate in any school’s tournament band, we could staff a band for the UALR group, but we won’t staff a band for UALR if they play Western. In addition, What some might view as disloyal is really atmosphere enhancement.
But if seedings and history indicate anything, that situation will be moot.