LOCKN’ Festival is going down August 23 – 26, 208 at Infinity Downs & Oak Ridge Farm in Arrington, VA. With headlining performances from Dead & Company (4 sets), Widespread Panic, Tedeschi Trucks Band (2 sets), and Umphrey’s McGee (3 sets), jam band fans from all over are planning to make their way to one of the most exciting music festivals of the summer. Known for their unique tribute sets and out-of-left-field collaborations, LOCKN’ is a place of magic. Now that the official lineup has been unveiled, festival organizers will be revealing special twists over the next couple of months until we land on show day.As such, LOCKN’ Festival has announced that saxophonist Branford Marsalis will sit in with Dead & Company and drummer Jason Bonham will sit in with Umphrey’s McGee for a Led Zeppelin set.This will be the first-ever collaboration between Dead & Company and Marsalis, though the saxophonist has played with the original Grateful Dead five times, along with their various side-projects.As Relix notes,Marsalas first performed with the [Grateful Dead] on 3/29/1990 at Nassau Coliseum. Originally, Marsalis was supposed sit-in for one song, but he meshed with the band so well that he played the entire second set. After that fateful night, Marsalis played with the original band on New Years 1990 as well as 9/10/91, 12/10/93 and 12/16/94. Later in life, he also sat in with The Dead in 2009 and Furthur in 2013.“I still remember fondly my time playing with the Dead in 1990,” Marsalis told Rolling Stone, “and this latest iteration of the Dead aesthetic is filled with great musicians. I look forward to making music with them.”“As I’ve always said, if we’re not having fun, we’re not doing our job,” Bob Weir added. “With Branford, at LOCKN’, I’ll expect we’ll be working overtime.”Watch Branford Marsalis discuss his experience playing with the Grateful Dead in a 1996 TV interview below via YouTube user Josh Daniel:Additionally, Umphrey’s McGee will welcome drummer Jason Bonham during one of their three sets at LOCKN’. Umphrey’s McGee has a long history of playing Led Zeppelin tunes, covering over 15 total tunes several times since 1998, including “Bron-Yr-Aur” (x13), “Fool In The Rain”(x84), “Immigrant Song” (x30), “Kashmir” (x19), “Moby Dick”(x25), “That’s The Way” (x18), “The Song Remains The Same” (x80), and more, according to allthings.umphreys.com, so the collaboration comes as no surprise.According to Relix,Jason Bonham will also break new ground at LOCKN’ 2018, performing with Umphrey’s McGee for the first time. Through his career, Bonham has collaborated with Slash, David Gilmour, Jeff Beck and more. He also played in place of his father—the legendary John Bonham—at the historic Led Zeppelin reunion in December 2007.“[Led Zeppelin is] one of our biggest influences,” guitarist Brendan Bayliss told Rolling Stone. “We technically have three drummers in the band, and I guarantee you that all three would say John Bonham taught them more about rock & roll than any other drummer. Getting the opportunity to play with Jason is another example of Pete [Shapiro] asking, ‘How can we make this place go off?’”As you can see in last week’s teaser video below, guitarist Jake Cinninger is perfecting a few choice covers of the classic English rock band. Get psyched:Two weekends ago, Umphrey’s McGee incorporated “Fool In The Rain” into their rain-soaked closing set at SweetWater 420 Fest in Atlanta, GA, foreshadowing the exciting announcement. Watch a clip of the performance below, courtesy of YouTube user CornBinladen:Umphrey’s McGee – “Fool In The Rain” [Led Zeppelin cover]Catch Branford Marsalis with Dead & Company and Jason Bonham with Umphrey’s McGee only at LOCKN! You can grab your weekend pass now via the LOCKN’ website.
Student Senate discussed pep rally improvement and student employment reform at Wednesday’s meeting, planning to make strides in these areas before the current student government’s term ends April 1. Student body vice president Andrew Bell said the current student government officers will have their closing meeting soon with Game Day Operations in order to finalize next year’s pep rallies. “We’re giving them our final thoughts on pep rallies so they can make improvements for next year,” he said. Pasquerilla East senator Julie Doherty said there was an excessive amount of waiting at the 2010 rallies. “They lasted too long and took up too much time,” Doherty said. “It’s not as fun when you’re just waiting there for a while.” Off-Campus Concerns Chair Emily LeStrange said the changes at Irish Green this year were definitely a positive step. “It’s a lot more student-friendly in terms of players getting involved,” she said. “It’s more open to communicating with students.” LeStrange said the unlimited capacity and the stage are both important features of the location. But some senators said the lack of thunderous noise at Irish Green posed a problem. “At Irish Green the stage isn’t facing [DeBartolo Performing Arts Center], it faces the street so the sound doesn’t reverberate,” Siegfried senator Kevin McDermott said. Yiting Zheng, McGlinn senator, said the indoor pep rallies solved this problem by packing many people inside and creating a higher noise level. Ideas to bring older students to next year’s rallies included guest speakers, more variety and free food and T-shirts. Student body president Catherine Soler also discussed her plan to restructure student employment, especially the Notre Dame Job Board. The job board, which can be found through a link under the Student Academic tab on insideND, lists categories of both on-campus jobs, such as in athletics and food services, and jobs in the broader Notre Dame community, such as child care and clerical positions. Soler said the current board is rarely updated and hard to navigate. The Student Employment Office, a division of the Office of Financial Aid, manages the board but does not actively seek out student employment opportunities to post, she said. “The current process is each department is sent a newsletter and if they have a job, they can contact the Student Employment Office which then puts it on job board,” Soler said. Once a position is filled, it is again the job of the department to inform the Student Employment Office to remove the position from the board. Soler said the departments do not regularly follow-up with this task, which makes the board rarely up-to-date. Some senators suggested moving the link to a more visible place. Zheng said allowing students to upload their resumes directly to the site would improve contact between applicants and potential employers. With more than 40 percent of students employed on campus, Soler said, the job board should become a more effective tool.
The announcement of the Big Ten Conference to keep all fall sports competitions strictly conference-only made waves throughout the college sports realm. For the University of Wisconsin football team, everything changes.Ideally, discussions in late July about 2020 Badger football usually concern expectations and the make-up of the team — how the team will move on from and replace key playmakers like Jonathan Taylor and Quintez Cephus at the skill positions on offense, whether senior Jack Coan will fend off rising prospect Graham Mertz at quarterback, if the offensive line will live up to annual high expectations or whether the young defense will build on their dominance from a year ago.Unfortunately, all these fun discussions fade into the shadow of how the season will operate under a pandemic. So, let’s break down this limited Wisconsin football schedule.UW Athletics: Big Ten announces fall athletics will be conference-only amidst COVID-19 pandemicThe Big Ten released a statement July 9 stating that the conference will adjust their fall sports schedule to “conference Read…First off, Wisconsin loses the opportunity to play one FCS opponent in Southern Illinois at home on Sept. 12 and two FBS opponents in Appalachian State at home on Sept. 19 and the highly anticipated Notre Dame game at Lambeau Field on Oct. 3 in Green Bay.With a bye week scheduled for week seven — Oct. 17 — Wisconsin is now limited to three games in the first seven weeks of the season. These first three opponents are Indiana at home Sept. 4, at Michigan Sept. 26 and Minnesota at home Oct. 10. Michigan and Minnesota are almost sure-fire top 25 teams while a surging Indiana program should prove a tough opening matchup.Many fans have had a difficult time understanding why the Notre Dame game needed cancellation instead of relocating. If Notre Dame is in South Bend, Indiana, it seems far more plausible to compete against them on either team’s home turf as opposed to flying out to play conference foe Maryland on Oct. 24. But this is where the Big Ten’s decision to keep everything in-house comes in to play. Despite Maryland and Rutgers’ physical separation from the rest of the conference, under the umbrella of the Big Ten, all 14 of its schools can operate in uniform under the same protocols and procedures in dealing with COVID-19.The same cannot be said for Notre Dame, who has remained an independent in football for years, but may join its basketball program in becoming a member of the ACC in 2020. Whether Notre Dame chooses to remain independent or join the ACC, Wisconsin and the Big Ten cannot be sure they will handle their team with the same safety measures through this pandemic.Additionally, Notre Dame and Wisconsin remain hopeful their 2021 contest at Soldier Field will happen and that they can reschedule their contest at Lambeau for a future date. Still, we wonder why Notre Dame and the Big Ten can’t work something out for at least 2020. It makes a lot more sense geographically for Notre Dame to join the Big Ten rather than the ACC.Aside from this marquee matchup against Notre Dame at Lambeau, Wisconsin was also scheduled to have another exciting neutral site game against Northwestern at historic Wrigley Field in Chicago. The landmark venue would have likely been host to an electric atmosphere full of both Northwestern and Wisconsin fans. Now, it will be played at Northwestern’s Ryan Field.Report shows UW Athletics economic impact down compared to 2011While the University of Wisconsin’s overall athletic performance has stayed roughly the same, if not better than it was in Read…In all, the loss of two home games and two neutral site games leaves Wisconsin with nine total contests against Big Ten foes with four games at home in Camp Randall Stadium and five games on the road.Home field advantage tends to be a very real thing in college sports, however, there could be little to no effect where these games are played in 2020 with little to no fans expected at all sporting events.The stadium factor at both Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor and Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City make away games at Michigan and Iowa much more difficult than they already are, but with a lack of fans this season, the playing field might be leveled. Camp Randall has always proved a hostile environment to visiting opponents and without the stadium rocking this year, the Badgers will likely lose at least some of their home-field advantage.Just as 2020 has been impossible to predict, so too is the reality of this football season. But if it does happen, it’s even harder to predict who emerges as the top dogs in the Big Ten. The Big Ten has proven year in, year out that it is one of the toughest conferences to successfully navigate. In a season without non-conference games, it will be even more difficult to come by wins.Before the pandemic, on paper, the Big Ten West division was shaping up to be well-rounded and deep with the Badgers at the forefront, while the Big Ten East improves in depth behind legit championship contenders like Ohio State and Penn State.With a full Big Ten West slate and Michigan, Indiana and Maryland coming from the Big Ten East, no win is guaranteed for the 2020 Badger football team.If the season does happen, there is no reason to set Wisconsin’s expectations any lower as they should still be expected to come out of the West, though in a narrow margin. If they play all nine games, 7-2 seems a reasonable prediction for their final record. Any record prediction should be taken with a grain of salt, however.Regardless of Wisconsin’s final record this year, expect new and advanced statistics and analytics to measure the strength of the conference, i.e. pitting the SEC against the Big Ten to decide the nation’s best teams. Perhaps we could see an expanded playoff at the end of this season to provide a more accurate measure of dictating college football’s best.Men’s Basketball: Looking back on Wisconsin’s roller-coaster seasonThe University of Wisconsin men’s basketball team’s 2019-20 season was a rollercoaster in the truest sense of the word. While Read…Shortly after the Big Ten announced its decision for fall sports, Wisconsin Athletic Director Barry Alvarez wrote a letter to Badger stakeholders. Wisconsin football then tweeted the letter. The main takeaways include the importance of being flexible this fall. As administrators, as players or as fans, it’s important to understand that some things this upcoming season may change in a moment’s notice.One thing that remains flexible is the schedule. With so many dates during the season now open, the schedule can shift to allow for fewer gaps between games and a reordering of matchups across the season.With so much uncertainty this upcoming season, we don’t know if any fans will get to experience tailgates, the atmosphere in Camp Randall, or a full gameday at the bars. We don’t even know if our beloved Badgers will be able to play the sport that allows us the opportunity to participate in such activities.One thing is certain: If college football is played this season, it will look a whole lot different.