HBCU Bands

Band Leaders Promise Epic Band Battle at Bayou Classic

The Undefeated heads to New Orleans for the Bayou Classic and talk with the band directors on what to expect from the Band of the Bands

They were in New Orleans for the 43rd edition of the Bayou Classic, of course, with Grambling State and Southern both coming in with 21 victories in the all-time series and sporting 8-0 records against Southwestern Athletic Conference competition this year.

If the Nov. 25 Battle of the Bands between the two in-state rivals at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome was any indication – some might say the winner won by unanimous decision – the band matchup on Nov. 26 was the only game in town to see.

We chatted with the school’s band leaders to get a pregame take. They hardly showed what their game plans were; band leaders are like football coaches in that way. But this much is true: GSU’s Larry Pannell and Southern’s Nathan B. Haymer knew that if their troupes didn’t bring it – and bring it good – folk were going to talk about it for 12 agonizing months until the next Bayou Classic.

So, bring the beat!