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Wisconsin band featured in Hazed movie accused of more hazing stunts

Story update

Interview with Moderator Hank Nuwer on prior hazing scandal with Wisconsin band.
The band has been suspended and will miss the Ohio State game.

Excerpt:

That means the band will not perform at tonight’s Big Ten football game between the 18th-ranked Badgers and the No. 14 Ohio State Buckeyes at Camp Randall Stadium, and it marks the first time the marching band has been suspended from a game show in at least 40 years, band director Mike Leckrone said.

“I thought the only thing I could do to send the message was to suspend,” Leckrone said.

Speaking at a news conference at the UW Welcome Center, Leckrone said he thought only a small percentage of the 300 band members were involved in any hazing, but that the members had a “shared responsibility” to behave appropriately.

“You don’t have any idea how hard it was,” he said. “It was like I can remember my father saying, ‘This is going to hurt me more than it’s going to hurt you.’ ”

Leckrone did not describe the allegations in detail but said they involved alcohol consumption and “inappropriate sexual behavior.”

He said he learned of the allegations from a tip but would not say if it came from a student.

Dean of Students Lori Berquam, whose office will investigate the allegations, said the band will remain suspended during the investigation, but she declined to say how long that might take.

In October 2006, the university put the band on probation for seminude dancing, sexualized banter and hazing that occurred during a road trip to the University of Michigan.

By Hank Nuwer

Journalist Hank Nuwer is the Alaska author of Hazing: Destroying Young Lives; Broken Pledges: The Deadly Rite of Hazing, High School Hazing, Wrongs of Passage and The Hazing Reader. In April of 2024, the Alaska Press Club awarded him first place in the Best Columnist division and Best Humorist, second place.

He has written articles or columns on hazing for the Sunday Times of India, Toronto Globe & Mail, Harper's Magazine, Orlando Sentinel, The Chronicle of Higher Education and the New York Times Sunday Magazine. His current book is Hazing: Destroying Young Lives from Indiana University Press. He is married to Malgorzata Wroblewska Nuwer of Warsaw, Poland and Fairbanks, Alaska. Nuwer is a former columnist for the Greenville (Ohio)Early Bird and former managing editor of the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner in Alaska.
Nuwer was named the Ohio Society of Professional Journalists columnist of the year in 2021 for his “After Darke” column in the Early Bird. He also won third place for the column in 2022 from the Indiana chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. He and his wife Gosia, recently of Union City, Ind., have owned 20 acres in Alaska for many years. “The move is a sort-of coming home for us,” said Nuwer. As a journalist, he’s written about the Alaskan Iditarod sled-dog race and other Alaska topics. Read his musings in his blog at Real Alaska Daily--http://realalaskadaily.com and in his weekly column "Far from Randolph" in the Winchester Star-Gazette of Randolph County, Indiana.

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