As a senior in the University of Notre Dame Marching Band, I have gone through my share of game days. One of our finest game day traditions includes getting to trot out of the tunnel and onto the field for our pre-game performance. We leave the tunnel via our signature trot and follow this up by performing Fanfare, hike stepping down the field to Hike Notre Dame, “creating the traditional monogram ND and playing the greatest of all University fight songs- the Notre Daaaaaaaaame Victory March”, and so on. But before all of the magic happens, there is a solid gap of time in between our march into the stadium and the time we exit the tunnel. Curious about what this experience is like from the perspective of a band member? Well, here are some of the many thoughts running through our minds during our time in the tunnel. Enjoy!
We begin with the post-march out sweat. The struggle is real.
Do I need some water? Obvs. I’m chugging this whole thing.
But, yay! You made it through another marchout! Good work team.
Time to frantically fight the crowd to find your rank. You’re taking forever! Oh gosh, your rank members will be concerned.
Alright we’re all together. Now you get freaked out by the huge football players walking by. That guy looks like a building!
Okay, it’s time for a rank pep talk. Focus kids.
Time for your pre-tunnel rank hand shake. Let’s do this thing!
And into the tunnel you go! This is it! You’re trying really hard to hold onto the plaid of the person in front of you. But my goodness, we are booking it.
WOOHOO! We’re in the tunnel! Time to wait and get super pumped!
Oh man, listen to those fans! Wait a minute…did you say 80,000 people? *Gulp*
Cue the nerves. Proceed to freak out.
What if I fall?
Wait is my neck clip thingy closed?
What yard line do I stop trotting on again?
I can’t even see or hear the drum major!
Your rank members notice your nerves. They feel your pain.
But they won’t let you go down like this. Cue pep talk #2. FOCUS!
There is chaos around you but you’re trying your best to focus on the task at hand.
Alright you’re good. You’ve got this. Now it’s time to cheer. You’re so excited!
Time to cheer / freak out with the people standing near you. After all, everyone is friends in the tunnel.
You wish everyone luck & tell them that you’ll see them on the other side.
Strangely, there is always that one guy near you that manages to keep his cool and seem totally uninterested. Oh well, you’ll cheer enough for the both of you.
Yes! You’ve made eye contact with your BFF across the tunnel.
Now you’re full-on joining in the chants. WHO’S HOUSE!?!
You oddly feel like you’re about to go into battle.
“Twee-eet Tweet” YEAH! *Left, left, left, left* This is it! Wait… am I on the right foot?
Got it. LET’S GOOOOOO!
Time to let the adrenaline take over and do your thing. AHHHHH!
“HERE GO WE YEAH!”