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university of michigan

Ohio State's marching band throwing the Michigan flag into the "trash."

What do you get when you mix a 127-year college football rivalry with highly competitive and talented musicians? The Best Damn Band in the Land, that's what.

Ohio State's marching band, which unjokingly refers to itself The Best Damn Band in the Land—or TBDBITL for short—even has the acronym for the nickname included in its website URL.

The rivalry between The Ohio State University and University of Michigan football teams is legendary, and so is the back-and-forth between their marching bands. Ohio State just keeps upping its delightfully petty game of trolling Michigan in its pregame and halftime shows, much to the delight of Ohio State fans.

In one performance, the Ohio State marching band members form two ships, one bearing the Michigan flag and one bearing Ohio State, and the Ohio State ship "sinks" the Michigan one. In another, the create a car race between the two teams with Ohio State hitting the "finish line" first. In another, the band storms a Michigan castle and replaces its banners with Ohio State flags.

Michigan's flag has been thrown away, donkey kicked, smashed with sledge hammers, stomped on, sliced with scissors and more as the TBDBITL members pull off impressive feats of choreography, all while playing their instruments.

Even if you don't give a rip about college football or either of these teams, you gotta admit this is unbelievably cool:

Marching bands don't often get the respect they deserve, especially in the shadow of the big football programs they support. But what these folks do is not easy. They work hard—in fact, one study found that “the physical challenges and demands of participating in competitive marching band is similar to athletes who compete in sports."

Add in the skill of playing a musical instrument and the coordination it takes to do both in a highly choreographed performance, and phew. Seriously, give these kids some accolades.

And in case you were wondering, yes, Michigan's marching band does similar trash-walking in their performances, such as this 2021 game in which they made Ohio State lose a game of beer pong:

People can root for whatever team they want, but I think we should all root for the marching bands, whatever side they're on. They certainly deserve it.