College Traditions: “Country Roads” Sung in Unison in Morgantown
“Country Roads” has become the unofficial song of West Virginia University and, as of March 8, 2014, one of the official songs of the State of West Virginia. In 1980 John Denver performed his hit song “Take Me Home, Country Roads” at the dedication of Mountaineer Field, and it has since become tradition for fans to remain in the stands following every Mountaineer victory and sing the song with the players. Although the tradition originated during football games, it is now recognized throughout the University, with the song being performed at various athletic events and ceremonies. Sports Illustrated named the singing of “Country Roads” as one of the must-see college traditions.
The Pride of West Virginia is the official marching band of the University. The band’s football pre-game show includes traditions such as the Drumline’s “Tunnel” and “Boogie” cadences, the 220‑beat per minute run-on cadence to start the performance, marching the “WV” logo down field to the University fight song, “Fight Mountaineers”, expanding circles during Simple Gifts, and the formation of the state’s outline during “Hail, West Virginia”.