In addition to the players, graduate assistant Kelly May said the band has a staff of about 15, including Wilcox, assistant director John Hendricks, coordinators for the color guard, percussionists and twirlers, "and of course the equipment manager, who is responsible for getting everything where it needs to go."
That is no small task, since its roster is about five times the size of a college football team and has much more equipment in the form of instruments and uniforms.
The band has a number of members that graduated from high schools around the Eastern Panhandle, including assistant director Hendricks. The Shepherdstown native is a graduate of Jefferson High School. He played trombone and was a drum major for the Mountaineer band and has been the assistant director for five years.
The band gave some eardrum-rattling renditions of the university's fight song and other tunes, but was surprisingly subtle when it came to performing the school's alma mater and Aaron Copland's "Fanfare for the Common Man."
Some future members of the band were likely on the field, as well, with marching bands from Musselman, Berkeley Springs, Hedgesville and Martinsburg High warming up the audience for the Pride of West Virginia.
The big band bash was the culmination of West Virginia University Days in the Panhandle, which included several other performances by other bands and choirs from the university. There were also college awareness programs, lectures by university faculty and other events aimed at recruiting Eastern Panhandle high school students into joining the ranks of the Mountaineers.