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About ReturnOfTheSonOfSUAPYG

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  1. "Clash of Corps" was a total embarrassment to the activity, and should serve as a warning to any corps admin who's hubris ever gets to the level of BD's/The Cadets' admins. Just awful, cheesy, unfocused crap at every stage. Just because Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson's brother/cousin/whatever is involved, it doesn't mean it's worth getting into. - It showed too little of the actual shows and pretty much zero instruction - It showed too much of the wrong behind-the-scenes stuff (members having a rough experience, the infamous dorm-room scene, etc). To me , a documentary that should serve as any blueprint to this sort of thing is "Madison On Tour." It was released in 2000 and got played on PBS before finals that year. Unfortunately, it's pretty hard to find. It showed off stuff from multiple seasons (93-94, mostly). It captured the RIGHT moments to show to a wider audience: - Actual instruction i.e. Jeff Moore and the battery doing a HS clinic - Actual show footage from the Scouts and other corps - Scott Stewart explaining his philosophy on the activity - And yes: some fun, random tour highlights (completely PG)
  2. I wonder if there's a way for them to vote on a proposal that tables/freezes all field instrumentation discussion for a certain period of time? If so, someone should make it happen.
  3. Even as someone who likes some of the current "everything but the kitchen sink" trends of the activity, I'm glad it failed. It would have been yet another arms race stacked on top of five other arms races. Like A&E, it would have been another 5-10 years of designers throwing crap at the wall to see what sticks.
  4. Some more background: * UMN-Crookston is one of the smallest schools in the UMN system. It's in a remote part of the state and never had much of a football program to begin with. This move makes perfect sense. * St. Cloud State (part of the Minnesota State system) is in a different situation: it's one of several Div II schools in the state that have Div I NCAA hockey programs (the others are MSU-Mankato, Bemidji State, and UMN-Duluth ... the latter of which has won the NCAA Hockey championship the past two years). Juggling non-revenue division II sports with Title IX obligations AND trying to maintain a competitive Div I hockey program can be difficult ... especially if you're SCSU's admin/athletic deparment -- who seem to shoot themselves in the foot quite a bit. The fact that they're dissolving their football team after opening a stadium in 2004 speaks volumes. Between this, the perception of SCSU as a "party school," and the city of St. Cloud making national news for the wrong reasons (overt hostility to immigrant communities), the school is trending down. * Meanwhile, the football team of MSU-Mankato (another MN State system school, similar enrollment size to SCSU) is playing in the NCAA Div II title game this weekend. They've managed to do this while also fostering a growing Div I men's hockey program (currently ranked #2 nationally as of this week). It's a school that -- at one point -- was in a very similar position as St. Cloud State. But over the past 15 years, the combination of effective admin leadership, deep pocketed donors, effective AD leadership, good coaches, reinvestment into campus facilities, and growing enrollment have led to a better athletic landscape. (I'm not saying things have been perfect and that MSU is going DI/FCS anytime soon ... i.e. some of the athletic costs have been passed on via student fees.) GETTING TO THE POINT - Because of this upward trend -- and the fact that the MSU Athletic Department actually saw net value in having a student marching band -- the "Maverick Marching Machine" was brought back after a long hiatus. The nearest drum corps -- the Govenaires -- has benefited from this environment. TL;DR - Based on my experience in this state, collegiate football (for all its BS) helps the activity more than it hurts it.
  5. U of St. Thomas was essentially "forced" out of the MN division III conference (MIAC). Too much of a competitive advantage (larger enrollment and athletic budget, as well as a football coach who didn't care about running up scores): The move to Div. I will be neat -- only other Div 1 school in the state is University of Minnesota -- but it's going to take a long time to pan out. Their total athletics budget is $5 million. Marquette's basketball budget is $12 million.
  6. I'll always -- in my biased opinion -- vouch for Minneapolis over Indy in terms of fan experience. There's just more to do in the Twin Cities' neighborhoods/districts during August. Parking is so-so, but there are so many more ways to get around (I've never had issues on the light rail, and you can come from the airport, MOA, or St. Paul pretty easily without worrying about parking). I'll give Indy some credit, their stadium has two key advantages: 1) proximity to convention center space and 2) the outdoor warmup site at military park. Getting bussed from warmups seems pretty lame, but it works, and the park is a nice, large, flat area. These are two fairly big flaws with Downtown Minneapolis. The Minneapolis Convention Center is a 20 minute walk from the stadium. The Armory (old arena-turned-concert-venue across from the stadium) could hypothetically be utilized, but it's a privately owned space that books some pretty big shows on weekends ... so probably not happening. As for outdoor warmup space: there isn't much at the moment ... especially under the state of perpetual construction in Downtown Mpls. A few groups could maybe utilize the commons space in front of the stadium (maybe battery or guard only), but it would likely be another bussing situation for the rest. Loring Park comes to mind ... other side of downtown and about a 30 minute walk from the stadium. If there's serious talk about giving MN another chance at a large show/Regional, it's worth taking another look at US Bank Stadium. The DCI MN show at TCF had diminishing returns, but getting it indoors at a state-of-the-art facility would help. The Youth In Music band championships, coming up this Saturday, always seem to go well. Or just have it at New Orleans. That would be a hoot.
  7. Never too late, I would say. Yamaha has the most ergonomic marching tubas, and a lot of corps use them. Try reaching out to a Yamaha corps and see if they have any old ones for sale.
  8. Japanese members in DCI has been going on for almost 30 years. The ones I marched with were easily some of the best performers/people I've ever met. ROI? In terms of attracting donors, it doesn't hurt to have "international cultural experience" included in the program. I agree with staying local -- something a lot of corps struggle/refuse to do -- but if an international pipeline is there, you'd be stupid not to use it.
  9. Well this is something ...
  10. Bluecoats -- as a whole -- did a great job of characterization from beginning to end ... from early season to finals. Unfortunately, they either peaked too early or just simply had a bad semis run and not-good-enough finals run.
  11. I'm sure your career/life is an amazing thrill-ride that's worthy of public dissection.
  12. The organization itself is still solid and puts out a competitive WGI guard and drumline. The summer group is just a giant question mark, however.