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Rutgers Marching Band Director Todd Nichols Discusses Debut

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NCAA Football: Maryland at Rutgers Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

New director Todd Nichols has been nice enough to speak with us since his arrival about his vision for Rutgers Marching Band. He spoke at length with us last winter when he was hired and last week again before his debut. Today, he gives us feedback on his first Rutgers football game experience, as well as what fans can expect for this weekend’s game.

OTB: How did you think the band was received?

TN: “The reaction was far beyond what I could have ever hoped for! It was incredibly positive and our alumni and fans showered the band with tons of support. We could hear cheers from the stands during pre-game. Even some OOOH’s and AHHHH’S! There was a definite electricity in the air the whole day. Tons of fans followed the band through the entire festivities outside the stadium, all the way to post-game. We have received incredibly positive feedback and kind remarks from our debut. Social media has been on fire this week! THANK YOU RU ALUMNI AND FANS!!!!!”

OTB: Did the fans seem to "buy in" to the band's music?

TN: “I think so. You'll never ever please 100% of the people 100% of the time but I think we got pretty close last Friday night. Many people have commented favorably on the sound of the band and our music selection. They are excited to see what we have in store for the remainder of the season for sure. The student section was excited at many times as well!”

OTB: What us the theme for this week's halftime? Any special features to highlight?

TN: “To be honest, for this week, we will reprise the “War Before the Shore” show for one more time. We have spent the bulk of time this week making some adjustments to our pre-game show to really have it sparkle. We have made some music adjustments in pre-game as well. Not to worry though.... while we have been polishing pre-game, we have also been keeping “War Before the Shore” fresh AND we have started working on our second halftime show entitled “We Salute You!”. This will be both an emotional and super FUN halftime show that we will present on 9/16 vs. Morgan State as part of our Military Appreciation Day. You are definitely going to want to be in the seats to see what we have in store....but I'll save that for next week.”

“For now, the band is polishing routines, working on our sound and marching technique, and finalizing our in stand playbook, which is quite up tempo and challenging. These students are working their tails off to provide an electric energy come game day this Saturday. Please come and support these fine men and women and be in the stands for pre-game through post-game this Saturday!”

Thanks again to Todd for speaking with us and we look forward to another great performance at Saturday’s game!