Pay Online for Homecoming 2008! (dues, too!)

We’re on the cutting edge of 1998 technology here with a Web site and now a mailing list, and today we’re taking yet another step. Starting now, you can pay for 2008 Homecoming activities online via PayPal, so you can use any major credit card or your own PayPal account!

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Important shipping and fees info

PayPal charges a small fixed fee and a small percentage to process credit cards and deposit the money for us. As the Homecoming items are not priced at any kind of a profit, there’s a chance that these small fees could turn into an actual expense. To avoid this, we’ve added a small “shipping” fee to recover the costs of using PayPal.

All orders therefore have a small “shipping” charge that cannot be removed. This fee is to recover PayPal fees and is not for any actual shipping.

It’s more like a “handling” fee, but PayPal only lets us use certain names for “shipping” options, so ours says “Standard Shipping (2-3 weeks).” Again, it’s not for actual shipping, it’s to recover the very small costs of online payment.

Registration, tickets, and dues for Homecoming 2008

Annual dues (whether marching or not): $15.00

Registration for each marching member: $25.00

Football ticket for OU vs. Kansas, October 18, 2008: $72.00 per marcher
Required for each member marching at the game!
You can’t get in without a ticket!

Guest football ticket for OU vs. Kansas, October 18, 2008:: $72.00

Guests cannot get in without a ticket either!
Limit of one (1) unless approved by OUBAA officers

Homecoming Lunch: $8 per diner

If you want to order a Uniform Golf Shirt and have it mailed to you, that’s an extra $5, and you must add that to your cart or we won’t mail the shirt to you. (You can always come back and buy the “mail me a shirt” option later, so don’t worry.)

OUBAA Uniform Golf Shirts

Size S, M, L, or XL: $22.00





Sizes XXL or XXXL: $24.00



Size 4XL: $26.00

Mailing any shirt: $5 each
(No mailing necessary if you pick them up at Homecoming 2008)

Of course, we still accept checks and all the traditional OUBAA payment forms. This is simply a new option for those who want to pay securely, online, instantly. We’ve only added the small fee recovery (it’s less than 3%) because otherwise, if lots of you use this, it could cost OUBAA several hundred dollars in fees. It seemed wiser to add a few dollars in fees to each order than hope the grand total wasn’t too much for OUBAA to eat. Please let us know if you have any questions.

Dr. Wakefield profiled in the Norman Transcript

An excerpt:

Wakefield recently was inducted into the Oklahoma Bandmasters Hall of Fame, and his students say he deserves it.

“He’s one of the best band directors in the nation and students look up to him,” said Blake DeLao, a former student of Wakefield’s who now teaches band at Altus High School. He said Wakefield truly cares about his students.

DeLao, who calls Wakefield his role model, said he sees Wakefield when he returns to Norman for football games.

“Every time he sees me he always stops me and asks how teaching is going, because this is my first year teaching,” DeLao said. And that’s how Wakefield is with everyone, DeLao said.

“He wants you to succeed in everything you do.”

Subscribe to our mailing list!

We’ve long needed a better way for everyone to stay connected via E-mail, better than “Let’s all pile it on Rita and she’ll handle it.” Even though she always does, that’s not a great strategy. :-):

So now we have a way!

If you normally receive E-mail from Rita, you’ve already been subscribed to the new OUBAA-List, a real mailing list with real subscription options and digests and user-changeable addresses and all the modern features you would hope for, and probably would have hoped for a few years ago except now they’re actually here!

If you weren’t automatically subscribed, click here and go sign yourself up. It takes but a moment and is free.

Membership in the Web site does not mean automatic subscription to the mailing list. It should, I know, but they’re two entirely different pieces of software, and trying to coordinate them is like trying to coordinate tubas on one goal line and snare drums on the other. It’s possible if you work really hard and hold your breath, but it’s really best for all involved if you don’t attempt it.

If you’re not sure if you’re signed up, head over to the subscription page and sign up. If you’re already signed up, it will tell you and you won’t get double messages. (Unless you have multiple E-mail addresses, and we can’t really do anything about that—and even if so, you can always unsubscribe from one of them. It’s really flexible.)

You can even send mail to the list, and if the moderators approve, it will go out to everyone as if it was from you, meaning all replies will go directly to you and not to Rita! Yay for taking work off Rita’s shoulders and putting it on the stupid computers where it belongs!

(If you save up a few extra hours of sleep, bring them to Homecoming and give them to Rita in thanks for all the hours she’s donated over the years in keeping everyone connected. Thanks, Rita!)

The sign-up link remains in the left-hand sidebar from now on, and anyone is welcome to sign up for the mailing list. We hope you will and we hope you’ll find it useful!

TCU kickoff time set at 6:00 PM

As expected, the TV networks decided on the games for weekend-after-next today. ABC-ESPN passed on OU vs. TCU, but Fox Sports Network picked up the game with a 6:00 PM kickoff time. Check your cable or satellite provider for channel details (here in Crimson & Cream Country, the game will be on Fox Sports Southwest, but it’s likely to show up on other FSN channels as well).

We have also updated the “event calendar” with gameday information, amplified because September 27th is the annual Pride Parents’ Day, where the Pride welcomes all the proud parents and has dinner and pictures with the members (probably including some of you—we know some of you are both alumni and Pride parents!). We’ve put the broader schedule up at our sister site for the OU Band Parents Resource Association if you’d like more information, or want to get in touch with Betty Wiseman about “Pride Wear”.

See you on September 27th!

Sooners move up to #2

Thus sayeth

Sam Bradford threw for five more touchdowns. No. 3 Oklahoma again reached half-a-hundred points. The Sooners won big, again. Bradford completed 18 of 21 passes for 304 yards, matched his career high with five touchdowns and ran for a sixth score to lead the Sooners easily past Washington 55-14 on Saturday night.

Our Pride of Oklahoma pep band didn’t show up much on ESPN’s coverage (I first saw them in the third quarter), but we heard them pretty clearly starting with OU’s first touchdown and from then on. There was a lot of what the sportscasters euphemistically call “extra-curricular” activity before and during the game, and there may be some repercussions for Washington players who punched DT Marcus Granger on the play in which he was injured, but the Sooners come home 3-0 and ranked #2 in the nation.

That’s right: #1 USC dominated Ohio State 35-3, and the AP headline describes #3 OU as “trampling” Washington 55-14, but #2 Georgia struggled against unranked South Carolina, going up 14-7 in the third quarter and holding it there for the win. That prompted both the sportswriters (in the AP poll) and the Coaches (in the ESPN/USA Today poll) to move OU ahead of Georgia, making the Sooners the #2 team in the country. Ohio State fell from #5 to #13 or #14, depending on the poll.

However, as Jerry Palm’s indispensable tables point out, OU would probably only be #4 in any BCS rankings that existed. Two of the six computers will not publish results until about the time of the first BCS rankings on October 19, because those computers start from scratch each season and need 5-6 games to build up enough data on past and future opponents to provide meaningful results. (If you start fresh every year, then after week one, half the teams in Division I are tied for #1, and the other half are tied for #61, since 60 teams win and 60 teams lose each week, give or take the odd game with the I-AA schools.)

Of the four computer rankings already released, two put OU at #2, one at #12, and one at #30, for a computer ranking average of #5, weighing down OU’s poll average of #2. It’s early, so you see these things: one of the computers has USC as #36! Also, the Harris poll used in BCS rankings doesn’t start until October 19, so these preliminary calculations use the AP poll because it’s similar. Nonetheless, the computers really like Florida right now, ranking it ahead of OU. In fact, the four computer rankings available today put Florida as #1 when averaged together. (USC would be #2, Utah would be #3, Missouri #4, and OU ties with Georgia for #5.)

It’s still early in the season. The Sooners rest this weekend with a “bye” week, then host TCU at home on September 27 for Pride Parents’ Day. They then travel to Baylor (the Bears beat Washington State last night 45-17), and then to Dallas for the Red River Rivalry in the newly slightly renovated Cotton Bowl.

And then, just one month from now, it’s Homecoming 2008 week! Those registrations are due this week, so make sure you get yours in now! Homecoming is against Kansas, and despite losing a squeaker to South Florida on Friday night, the #19-ranked Jayhawks will be a formidable Big 12 foe this year, a strong contender for the Big 12 North title and perhaps the conference title itself. You won’t want to miss it, so make sure you send in your registration this week! You can’t use “preparing for the game” as an excuse since the Sooners have a bye weekend, so take a few moments to get it done. That way we can see you on the field on October 18!

OU @ Washington, Saturday night on ESPN

Last week’s home game against Cincinnatti was much nicer than the Drenching in the Trenches from week 1: in addition to a lovely 52-26 Sooner victory against a team that never gave up (Cincinnatti scored a touchdown as the game ended and went for 2 on the untimed conversion, but did not succeed), there was no rain! The sun was out with occasional shade from the clouds, the stadium was packed with Sooner fans, and The Pride of Oklahoma did their thing with a show for the fans on the east side of the stadium with three popular hits: Dirty Little Secret by the All-American Rejects, Ocean Avenue, and First Time.

And did I mention that Meredith Sigler twirled three batons that were on fire? On both ends? Yeah, that too. That’s why she’s a champion!

The non-conference schedule picks up again on Saturday with the Sooners’ first road trip—to Seattle, to face the Washington Huskies on their home turf. Most of you probably remember (vividly) the last time OU visited the Pac-10 for a football game

, but there’s been a new controversy this week: last Saturday, Washington scored a touchdown late in the game to pull within one point of visiting BYU, but when quarterback Jake Locker threw the football in the air in celebration, the referees threw the flag for unsportsmanlike conduct. The resulting try was therefore spotted from the 17-yard line, not the 2-yard line, making it about a 35-yard attempt—and it was blocked.

Washington fans (and several rabble-rousing sportswriters, as if there is another kind) are convinced that the flag should never have been thrown. Unlike the OU-Oregon debacle of almost exaclty two years ago, though, the Pac-10 says the referees got it right, which has only intensified the controversy.

You can read the 2007 NCAA Football Rules in PDF format here, but the rule in question did not change for 2008. On page FR-122 (page 123 of the PDF file), Section 2, Article 1, section “a” lists “specifically prohibited acts and conduct”. Subsection 2 of that section reads (with emphasis added):

  1. After a score or any other play, the player in possession immediately must return the ball to an official or leave it near the dead-ball spot. This prohibits:

    1. Kicking, throwing, spinning or carrying (including off of the field) the ball any distance that requires an official to retrieve it.

    2. Spiking the ball to the ground [Exception: A forward pass to conserve time (Rule 7-3-2-d)].

    3. Throwing the ball high into the air.

    4. Any other unsportsmanlike act or actions that delay the game.

PENALTY—Dead-ball foul. 15 yards [S7, S27] from the succeeding spot. Flagrant offenders, if players or substitutes, shall be disqualified [S47]. If a player or an identified squad member in uniform commits two unsportsmanlike fouls in the same game, he shall be disqualified.

So, basically, the argument is that conduct “specifically prohibited” by rules that explicitly define the offense is somehow not something specifically prohibited and should not have been flagged because other people have broken this rule and gotten away with it. It’s kind of easy to see why the Pac-10 isn’t buying that argument.

Nonetheless, we have the unusual situation of the Sooners visiting a Pac-10 team where both teams are convinced that the Pac-10 referees screwed up and cost them the game “last time” (last week for Washington, last time OU visited the Pac-10 for Oklahoma). You couldn’t get me to officiate that game if you gave me all of McCain’s, Obama’s, Biden’s, and Palin’s houses combined.

The Pride of Oklahoma shall be represented by a 140-member pep band, so look for them on ESPN (and ESPN HD) at 6:45 PM CDT for the national telecast. They should be easy to spot: they’ll be wearing the all-red uniforms debuted during last year’s Macy’s® Thanksgiving Day Parade. If you’re in Seattle, you can catch the pep band at 3:00 PM PDT as part of the OU Alumni Association’s “Boomer Bash” at the UW Baseball Field.

If you’re in the Puget Sound area, we hope you can show up to cheer on the Sooners as they play in a tough venue, and to support The Pride. If not, pull up a chair in front of the teevee at 6:45 PM. BOOMER SOONER!

PLEASE HELP: Dr. Gail Hall loses his home

It is with great sadness that I inform the Pride of Oklahoma family that the home of Dr. Gail Hall and his wife was completely destroyed by fire. Both Gail and Jennifer were in Texas at the time of the fire and were unharmed. As a result of the fire, they literally are left with only the clothes on their backs. The home, its contents, and their pets were all lost to the blaze.

Dr. and Mrs. Hall are among the biggest faculty supporters of the Pride and they need our support and encouragement as they face the fallout of this disaster. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.

If you would like to make a financial contribution to assist the Halls in their time of need, please make a check out to Kappa Kappa Psi and send it to my attention at:

University of Oklahoma Bands
500 W. Boyd
Norman, OK 73019

Thanks very much for anything you can do.

Letter from former (recent) Pride Drum Majors

We recently received the following letter from the four immediate past drum majors of The Pride of Oklahoma:

September 1, 2008

Dear Pride Alumni,

We hope this letter finds you well. It is hard to believe another season of Sooner football is upon us. For most of us, it is well past due! Certainly no season would be complete without the support of the Pride. We are sure you can all remember preparing for our first run out of the tunnel to a roaring crowd of Sooner fans. It’s an experience any Pride alum can never forget. Perhaps what are more memorable are the people with which we ran out of those tunnels. Our relationships with our fellow Pride members are the foundation for all of our fond memories. Fellow alumni, it is time to relive those days.

Once again the time to participate in alumni band is upon us! This is the chance to set aside some time to dust off those old marching shoes, take a walk around our beloved campus, and rekindle old friendships, all while getting the chance to march in front of 87,000 Sooner fans. It’s an opportunity most of us would give anything to relive!

Speaking truthfully though, most of us have not embraced this opportunity. There seems to be a stigma surrounding this experience we just cannot seem to shake. Perhaps we feel we are too old to be marching again. We say to ourselves, “I just graduated and I’ll look bad if I go back!” Our favorite excuse, however, is “there is no one I know going back.” Fellow alumni, this is one tradition we will NOT continue.

We strongly urge you to participate in this year’s Pride alumni band. We, as the Pride’s four immediate past drum majors, have come together as a group to pledge our attendance at the game and perform the famed “Pride of Oklahoma Strut” at this year’s HOMECOMING game on October 18th. Between the four of us, we have attended ZERO alumni events in a total of TEN years of alumni bands, but it only took attending one Pride rehearsal together to realize what we have been missing out on all these years. To stand together and reminisce about our days was something truly meaningful for the four of us. We left the rehearsal all stating: “I wish we were out there doing this again.” We are positive you would feel the same way. Sometimes the smallest reminders can be our largest influences.

It is time to start a new tradition in the Pride’s history: coming together as a large, strong, and supportive group of alumni, young and old, to support an organization we all hold close to our hearts. We strongly urge you to participate in what will truly be the greatest alumni band to date. We promise you, you will not regret it.

Please contact Alumni Band President Gail Richardson or Alumni Band Secretary Rita Heath, to register for the homecoming weekend festivities. We look forward to seeing you on October 18!

Boomer Sooner,

Clint Williams
2002, 2003
Kyle Wiemar
2004, 2005
Eric Shannon
Chauvin Aaron

Immediate Past Drum Majors, Pride of Oklahoma

Maybe we will feel a little more energy stirring in our midst this year!

Have you called your friends from the college years to talk them into joining you at homecoming this year? Don’t just think about it – do it.


One game done, another coming up

On Saturday night, we learned that if the Sooners are head of the opponent by 50-0 at halftime, and it then rains on the stadium so hard that they ask people to take cover on the concourse, and extend halftime by 72 minutes to let it pass, then many of those who left their seats will not return for the second half.

The Pride of Oklahoma was not among those who left, but you already knew that.

The picture at the right (a crappy phone picture, sorry) shows the view from the foot of the northeast tunnel during the storm. Click on it for a larger version if you like, but it’s not much better. Other than the huge light, you can see the rain falling and the mostly-empty stands. When the “take cover” instruction came down, they shut off the scoreboards and most (not nearly all) of the field lights to “encourage” people to take cover rather than think they could see fun shows on the wonderful new SoonerVision HD, but those came back on after a few minutes.

Unlike the shorter but colder deluge during 2002’s UTEP game, this time The Pride took cover in their pregame waiting tunnels, making things more bearable for all concerned. (Though we did feel sorry for the new Boomer and Sooner ponies pulling the Sooner Schooner—not only was it their first home game, but they literally got ridden hard during all the first half’s scoring and put away wet during the delay. We’re sure they’re sturdy ponies, though, or they wouldn’t get to pull the Schooner. And their handlers take good care of them. But think nice things for them this week.)

The storm hit just moments after The Pride of Oklahoma finished its first halftime show of the 2008 season—pop hits First Time (Lifehouse) and Ocean Avenue (Yellowcard). They got into the stands and then, almost immediately, got back out of them. The day went from hot and muggy to soaking in a very short time, so the new members of the 2008 Pride have quite a first-game experience to remember!

The challenges continue as the Pride works on this week’s show through threats of rain. The game vs. the Cincinatti Bearcats kicks off at 2:37 PM CDT with coverage on ABC in HD, but coverage will vary by region. Click here for coverage maps later this week to see if the game will be on in your area. For reasons unknown to us, ABC and ESPN have chosen to cover both the other 2:30 PM CDT games in HD, but not OU vs. Cincinatti.

The gameday schedule for Saturday is posted on our Events calendar, and we hope you’ll get to show up in Norman on Saturday afternoon to support the Sooners and see The Pride of Oklahoma!