Some call them “mean mugs” others call it a “grit face” but no matter what the name is where you’re from the time-honored tradition of HBCU band members screwing up their faces as they take that walk from the field to the stands before kickoff is one of the more humorous inner layers of the game day culture at HBCU. Over the weekend The Thorobred Marching Band of Kentucky State went viral for a legendary cadence of grit faces.
Originally posted by a TikTok account named hbcualum, the video starts with a Kentucky State symbolist leading a chant with an epic mean mug. She’s then followed by a series of increasingly meaner mugs as her bandmates march past the camera one by one.
With the ESPN’s Band of The Year HBCU Band championship being less than 80 days away, could this viral moment catapult The Thorobred Marching Band of Kentucky State into the rankings before the next round of voting?
Hopefully, y’all enjoy some of these responses as much as we did.
ABOUT ESPN BAND RANKINGS
Performances are judged on an individual basis, with judges giving scores for specific areas only. Bands are encouraged to submit a performance to be judged monthly. The committee is co-chaired by Jackson State Director of Bands Emeritus, Professor Dowell Taylor, and Dr. Julian E. White, FAMU Director of Bands Emeritus.
The next update will come in late October as the top 15 will be reduced to the top 10 overall in each division. The November ranking will list the top five in each division. The final ranking will award the top two teams in each division a shot at the ESPN BoTYtitle, which will be determined Dec. 15 in the Mercedes-Benz Dome in Atlanta, GA with the show starting at 6 PM EST. It will be simulcast on ESPN3 and ESPN Plus.