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Future Vols had the opportunity to experience what it’s like to be part of the Pride of the Southland marching band at football’s Orange and White Game earlier this month.

Nearly 400 high schoolers from across Tennessee and the southeastern United States were invited to Neyland Stadium to meet UT band members and perform “Rocky Top” at the game.

Madeline Sims, a freshman at Bearden High School who plans to attend UT, said she loved being part of the Pride for a Day experience.

“I play the piccolo, and I’m so excited to be surrounded by so many people who are passionate about band,” she said.

Rob Clark was in the Pride from 1987 to 1995 and now serves on the band’s alumni council.

For high school students who aspire to attend UT and be part of the band, the Pride for the Day experience is both eye-opening and morale boosting, he said.

“The transition from high school to college is a huge one,” Clark said. “The doubts are strong, but for them to have that opportunity and see they can play at the college level is important.”

More information about Pride of the Southland is available on the UT Bands website.


Brian Canever (865-974-0937,

Courtney Cox (