The Stanford band, the loveable or hateable (depending on your viewpoint) group known for outrageous shows, won’t be in a stadium or a football field near you until next summer.
In a letter to the band, Vice Provost for Student Affairs Greg Boardman cited alcohol as the main reason the band will be put on the shelf. The school’s Organization Conduct Board conducted the investigation:
The OCB panel reviewed the files for four separate investigations into allegations of violations of university alcohol policies, the Fundamental Standard, and the alcohol suspension and travel ban imposed in the May 2015 outcome letter to the Band by the Dean of Residential Education and the Title IX Coordinator.
The five-member panel found unanimously that the Band violated the alcohol suspension at Tree Rollout, violated university alcohol policies and the alcohol suspension at a gathering at Treehouse, and violated the travel ban by using Band funds to travel to a rented cabin at Lake Tahoe. The following excerpt from the Hearing Report describes the panel’s conclusions.
While the OCB moved to suspend the band for the better part of two academic years until 2018, Boardman only moved to suspend through the spring of 2017. It’s a way to bridge the gap between some sort of suspension and crippling the band’s efforts to come back.
Band members are obviously upset about the news:
“Band is devastated,” said Stanford Tree Sam Weyen ’18. “I’ve cried with maybe 20 separate people tonight. Understand that we didn’t lose a social activity, we lost our home. We lost our hope. Let’s not even talk about the egregious timing with finals knocking at the door. I for one have never felt so empty inside, as the Stanford band was my safe space, my smultronstalle, my everything. I’m left hapless wondering if Stanford actually gives a shit about me.”
Boardman said he wanted to preserve the band’s “irreverence and exuberance,” something he referred to as an essential aspect of what the group does. The band is tied to one of college football’s greatest plays when “the band is out on the field” got etched into the sport’s lore in 1982.
In 1990, the band poked fun at the struggling logging industry in the Pacific Northwest.
It played outside of the OJ Simpson trial in 1994 and weaponized USC’s fight song against the Trojans in a 2007 upset that was one of the biggest wins in school history.
Recently, the band getting under people’s skins is nearly an annual right of New Year’s Day, as integral to the proceedings as the Rose Parade and your raging hangover.
At the Rose Bowl in January, the band pissed off Iowa fans with this halftime performance.
A similar tone of pearl clutching was taken after the 2014 Rose Bowl ...
Stanford's marching band was the most unprofessional performance I've ever seen.— DCI (@guardie_bandie) January 2, 2014
Stanford's band made the strongest argument yet for banning recreational marijuana in CA. Tribute to Snapchat? Embarrassing.— Bryan Wood (@bryanwx) January 2, 2014
The Stanford band: supporting rich pompous assholes since 2014!— Kyle Conrad (@kyle_conrad) January 2, 2014
... and in 2013 as well.
Guy in the Stanford band has a "legalize pot" shirt on. What an embarassment. Stark contrast to the classy WI Band #RoseBowl2013— Eric Weishaar (@BreckLandscape) January 1, 2013
Whats goin on with the Stanford band. The bad news bears of bands? Not very classy. Lotta hippies is pasadena today id guess... #WISvsSTAN— Drew Neitzel (@drewneitzel) January 1, 2013
But there won’t be any performances for a few months as the band reorganizes its leadership to prevent future violations. If it can’t get proper leadership in place, the suspension will be extended and we’ll have to wait even longer to see the band make people mad again.