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3 Hurt in College Band Brawl

September 20, 1998

BEAUMONT, Texas (AP) _ A brawl erupted among members of the Southern University and Prairie View A&M marching bands at halftime Saturday night when one band began its performance before the other was off the field.

At least three people were taken to a hospital, including a member of the Prairie View band who reportedly was hit in the face with a musical instrument, officials said.

The game was played at a neutral field _ Lamar University’s Cardinals Stadium. Southern won 37-7, extending Prairie View’s losing streak to 80 games, a record for major college football.

The fight reportedly lasted about 20 minutes before Jefferson County sheriff’s deputies and Lamar University police finally brought things under control.

The fight began as the Southern band was marching onto the field. At the same time, Prairie View’s band was heading for the sideline.

As the bands marched past each other, fighting broke out.

Prairie View band members accused Southern band members of pushing and shoving them after breaking their formation.

Isaac Greggs, Southern’s band director, denied the allegation. He said his band was following the same routine they always execute when entering the field.

``This has never happened before,″ said Prairie View band director George Edwards. ``We’re missing uniforms and everything.″

At least four of Prairie View’s tubas, estimated at about $5,000 each, were bent during the fight. Several pieces of their uniforms and at least a saxophone were also reported missing.

Greggs said his band was also missing musical instruments.

Minutes after peace was restored, Prairie View’s band members left the game and Southern’s followed later.

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