The 2013 MEAC/SWAC Challenge was a great day for FAMU football. FAMU blew Mississippi Valley State off the field 37-10 on the gridiron and on a side note, the FAMU band returned to the stands for the first time in nearly two years with a new band director.
FAMU’s offense, led by quarterback Damien Fleming, the MEAC Co-Offensive Player of the Year, stomped all over Mississippi Valley State’s defense for a grand total of 307 total yards and four touchdowns.
Ultimately, the big story was the FAMU band, which is quarter of the size it was when it had over 400 members.
It's a new day," FAMU band announcer Joe Bullard told The Associated Press as the performance began. "Size does not matter. The sound is clear."
As the band marched into the Florida Citrus Bowl, fans stood and cheered, and some had tears in their eyes. Alumni said they celebrated the reappearance of a school symbol whose absence caused a core of its fan base to stay away on game days.
"They did have to be punished — if you want to say that," 1985 FAMU graduate Cedric Crawford said. "But it's great to have them back.
"It's almost not football season without the band — especially at FAMU," he said.