Crawford marches with the Buckeyes

Published 12:00 am Thursday, November 29, 2007

As the fall quarter at Ohio State University wraps up, so does this year’s marching band season.

One Franklin Furnace young man has followed a family tradition to become a part of the prestigious “Pride of the Buckeyes.”

Justin Crawford began playing trumpet in grade school. “I always looked up to my cousins Corby and Matthew,” said Justin. “I started when Corby was in the band.”

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Corby and Matthew Leach were both members of OSUMB during their college days.

Crawford spent seven years as a band member at Green High School in Franklin Furnace. He was field commander for two years.

Crawford’s family is very supportive of his marching band career.

“We’re very proud of Justin’s accomplishments,” said Kathy Crawford, Justin’s Mother. “It took a lot of discipline, dedication & hard work to make the band while managing a heavy class schedule at OSU.”

OSUMB has an elite reputation and becoming a member is not an easy process.

“You go to summer sessions two hours for two days a week, plus working on music on your own time,” said Crawford. “After summer is over you have try-out week. There’s music playing, then marching, then playing and marching.

So really there are three auditions.”

There are 225 spots in the marching band and more than 450 people were auditioning with Crawford.

“It’s really unbelievable,” he said. “When you dedicate your entire summer to that, and you see the caliber of people you are going up against, then to hear your name and know that you made the band is an amazing feeling.”

Music is a passion for Crawford, but not his main focus at OSU. As a business administration major in the Fisher College of Business, schoolwork and music require a delicate balance.

“Marching band is something I really like to do on the side, something I do to get away from stress and school,” he said. “But what I’m supposed to do, and what I really want to do is be a leader in business.”

The band at OSU is a lot of work and requires dedication and discipline.

The group holds two-hour rehearsals six days a week to prepare for each game day show.

“We do a different show every game,” Crawford said.

“Sometimes we have a couple weeks to learn it, but usually we only have one week to learn the show.”

Even with the hours spent on the practice field and memorizing music on his own time, Crawford says the good friends and great times make it worth it.

“A lot of times in the week you get discouraged because it is so hard and so stressful,” he said. “But on game day when you’re on the field and you’re in front of 105 thousand people who are on their feet…that rush makes it worth it.”