Baylor, Texas Tech bands compete to register bone marrow donors

The Golden Wave Band, comprised of 340 members, supports The Baylor Bears at the home game against Lamar University on September 12, 2015. Their exceptionally composed performances amaze Baylor fans, and heighten the hype throughout football games.

The Baylor Golden Wave Band has paired with the Texas Tech Goin’ Band from Raiderland in a cross-campus effort to help blood cancer victims.

As part of it, the Baylor Golden Wave Band and philanthropic group Be The Match will host a campus wide bone marrow registry drive on Thursday and Friday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the lobby of Baylor’s SUB.

Both bands started a Facebook campaign for the cause, making it a challenge to see which band’s page can get more likes in order to raise awareness for blood cancers and Be The Match, a nonprofit organization dedicated to creating a national registry of potential marrow donors for people diagnosed with blood cancers.

“We need help,” said Dr. Isaiah Odajima, associate director of bands at Baylor. “Because Tech is kicking our butts right now in likes.”

Odajima said that over the summer, at the annual Athletic Band Symposium for the College Band Directors National Association, he and the director of Tech’s marching band decided to work together in the name of service and do something that would benefit both bands’ students and an organization that might need their help.

“We’re just trying to raise awareness,” Odajima said. “[We] wanted to do it in the name of … good spirit, good friendship between the bands, but there’s a little competitive aspect to it as well.”

However, no matter how many likes either Facebook page gets, both bands will still share halftime at Saturday’s game.

Odajima said they will both be performing shorter versions of their own halftime shows in order to have time for a joint performance supporting their cause. They will take the field together to spell out “Be The Match” while a video plays to promote the organization.

At the beginning of their preseason, the Golden Wave Band held their own drive to recruit band members who would be willing to be bone marrow donors. They had over 100 donors register.

“We hope as many people come out as possible,” said Amy Schatz, president of Baylor’s student chapter of Be The Match. “The more people that sign up, the higher chance lives are saved.”

There will also be an opportunity for Baylor fans to register as potential bone marrow donors at this weekend’s football game versus Texas Tech at AT&T Stadium in Arlington.

“College students and people all around the world have the ability to save someone’s life all by themselves,” Schatz said.