San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec




San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

“Coach” marches Aztecs to victory

Coach+marches+Aztecs+to+victory

When you hear the band playing the fight song, you know it’s game time.  The excitement and thrill, which come from attending home games at Qualcomm Stadium and cheering on your fellow Aztec football team, originates from the spirit of students, faculty and alumni. From the stands, one can see the pride this alumnus and current faculty member has for San Diego State.

Director of Athletic Bands Bryan “Coach” Ransom knows what it means to be an Aztec. It runs through his blood. Throughout his 25-year career at SDSU, Ransom has seen the School of Music and Dance evolve and grow.  Ransom is in charge of three ensembles: the Marching Aztecs, Aztec Pep and Varsity Bands in addition to the Aztec Colorguard.

“I tell everyone that I have the best job in the world; I truly believe that,” Ransom said.  “I get to work in America’s Finest City, with amazingly talented faculty, staff and students, while representing my alma mater.”

This is an opportunity that not many college band directors are privileged to have. Ransom was fortunate to study with previous SDSU Director of Instrumental Ensemble Harold Warman and current Associate Director of Bands Charles Friedrichs, who he believes made him the director and person he is today.

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“I learned that patience, leading by example and always putting the student first are so important,” Ransom said. “I am very cognizant of the rigors of the modern college student.”

As a faculty member, Ransom ensures rehearsal and season performance schedules allow time for studies, jobs and a social life for students in the Athletic Bands. During the school year, he is busy directing band camp. During the fall, he supervises Pep Band auditions for basketball games, and in the spring, he coordinates postseason performances throughout the community. For those who want to see Ransom’s work and contributions to SDSU, attend a football or basketball game.

For new students not familiar with what occurs during Aztec games, be sure to check out the extra performances that Ransom puts together to entertain Aztec fans at the Q. If you arrive early to tailgate at the Q, it’s a must to attend Warrior Walk.

During the Warrior Walk students have the chance to see the Marching Aztecs play pep tunes and pump up the crowd before the big game kickoff.

“They should join us in our warm-up area, section M-1 to get a preview of the game music for that game as we rehearse,” Ransom said. “After each game, we perform a post-game concert, again in M-1. The band really lets loose out there, it’s a good time. You may want to bring ear plugs.”

Being the director of athletic bands comes with pressure to put on great performances during pregame and halftime shows at the Q.

“I have an obligation to deliver a quality product that represents athletics and the university, provides the requisite spirit and energy at games, and carries on the rich tradition of the Marching Aztecs,” Ransom said.

Ransom was recently honored by the SDSU Alumni Association with the 2013 Monty Award for distinguished university service.

“It is truly one of the greatest honors of my professional career. It is humbling to be honored by the university and the SDSU Alumni Association and I will cherish the award forever,” Ransom said.

New students should take advantage of the resources SDSU offers and never forget to show their Aztec pride at home games. Ransom gladly shared some words of wisdom for incoming freshman.

“Get out there and experience all that the university has to offer. Freshmen may not realize how far we have come, but this is an amazing time for SDSU athletics. Support your fellow Aztecs,” Ransom said.

The next time you’re at a football or basketball game don’t forget to say “hello” to Ransom, who is always looking for new students to join his ensembles or talk about Aztec sports with.

“I consider myself so lucky to have been here for over 25 years now, working with truly inspiring faculty, staff and students,” Ransom said.  “I don’t plan on leaving any time soon, but when I do, I would like to be remembered as someone who loved his work, inspired those around him, and always bled red and black.”

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“Coach” marches Aztecs to victory