I wish I could say I was there, but I stayed away from the Big Game November 20, 1982.

With less than 30 seconds of play remaining in the 85th annual rite of rivalry between Stanford and Cal Berkeley, Stanford set up for an easy field goal to pull ahead, 20-19. A 15-yard penalty against Stanford gave Berkeley a long shot chance, kicking off from the 25 yard line. Spirits ran high as the ball got loose, then was picked up and passed from player to player as Berkeley ran the ball down the field.

Victory for the Cardinal looked inevitable, as members of the Leland Stanford Junior University Marching Band surged onto the field. Berkeley tight end Kevin Moen got the pigskin and wove through the band, bowling over trombonist Gary Tyrrell to carry the ball into the end zone and score a win for Berkeley, 20-26.

Yup, the Band is responsible for one of Stanford's more embarassing losses to Berkeley and essentially ruining John Elway's senior season as Stanford's star quarterback.

Other Band exploits include:

  • Mooning TV cameras, resulting in a permanent ban from network television.
  • Rushing to one side of an airplane in flight, resulting in a ban from a certain airline.
  • Stealing signage and using it to decorate the Band Shack.
  • Stealing wheelchairs from airports.

Sources for details: The Play: Joe Starkey's Call of the 1982 Cal/Stanford Big Game (http://www.cs.rice.edu/~dwallach/the_play.html)
Daily Illini.com (http://www.dailyillini.com/aug01/aug28/sports/stories/sports_story02.shtml)