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BOA releases updated rulebook

Ties for overall champion titles will no longer be broken, according to the latest iteration of the Bands of America Adjudication Handbook released May 15. Modifications also include changes to the adjudication sheets and the criteria judges use to determine scores.

Avon (IN) performs at the 2016 Grand National Championships Nov. 12,
2016. The band tied Carmel for the highest score, but Carmel won the
tiebreaker and was named national champion. Under new rules that will
take effect this season, both schools would be named national champions.
Beginning this fall, any tie for first place overall will result in two (or more) regional, super regional, or national champions. Ties for class champion titles and overall placements will still be broken using the higher general effect score.

This change comes after Carmel won the 2016 national champion title over Avon because of a tiebreaker. Under this new system, both bands would be named national champions.

Additionally, some changes have been made to how the individual performance judges, those located on field level, will adjudicate their respective captions.

Visual performance individual judges will now assess the challenges and skills of a group in addition to accuracy and definition. This changes the verbiage to reward bands who challenge themselves visually with a variety of skills instead of those who perfect a limited skill set. That variety of skills includes form, body, and equipment challenges, such as advanced rifle or sabre skills; tempo and pulse, such as fast tempi or mixed meters; and handling multiple responsibilities simultaneously.

Music performance individual judges will assess the same skills as in prior years: tone quality, intonation, accuracy, and technique, but will no longer give separate subcaption scores for brass, percussion, and woodwinds.

Several other minor procedural changes were made to the handbook:

— Fall Housing Bureau rule added. Bands competing at super regionals and Grand Nationals have previously been required to make hotel reservations through this housing bureau. This rule has now been added to the adjudication handbook, and bands that violate this rule will not be permitted to perform. A detailed explanation of the importance of the housing bureau can be found on the Music For All website.

— Slight changes made to enrollment maximums. Maximum enrollment at regional events is now "up to 34 bands at select regionals," down one from 35 bands in the 2016 adjudication handbook. Super regional enrollment remains at a maximum of 64 bands for two-day super regionals and 34 bands for one-day super regionals. Grand National enrollment remains at a 100-band maximum.

— Additional credentials available for purchase. Bands are now able to purchase up to 10 additional credentials for directors, staff, and anyone else who will accompany the band through event flow. These 10 additional credentials can include up to four additional director name badges, which grant an individual access to event flow areas and general admission seating for the entire event. This brings the total number of credentials a band may use to 41, up from 36 in 2016.

— Grand Nationals random draw will take place at check-in. Previously the performance time draw takes place during the directors meeting immediately following the prelims awards ceremony. Shifting the pre-draw to check-in will allow directors to better plan for their semifinals performance time.

2017 Fall Schedule

Music for All announced its 2017 Bands of America fall championships schedule with only a few minor changes from the 2016 season.

Flower Mound (TX) performs at the Plano Regional on Oct. 1,
2016, at John Clark Stadium. // Photo by Jeremiah Wooten
While the total number of events remains the same, one notable absence is a Pacific Northwest regional. MFA has not had much success hosting a regional marching event in that area the past few years, and it appears they've decided to focus on other areas of the country, at least in the short term.

After a few years of low enrollment at Monroeville, MFA has decided to move that first-weekend regional across the border to Canton, Ohio, home of reigning Drum Corps International World Champion Bluecoats.

In Texas, a regional was added in Midland, bringing the total number of Texas regionals to five plus San Antonio. While it's not El Paso, the Midland Regional could draw a few groups from New Mexico who wouldn't otherwise make the drive to a BOA event.

Southeastern regionals remain at the same locations, except for the super regional, which has historically been held at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta. The Dome is scheduled to be demolished this year, and a new professional stadium, Mercedes-Benz Stadium, is under construction. It's unclear if the price and availability of the new stadium would be appropriate for a BOA event.

The Indianapolis Super Regional moves up two weekends, sharing the weekend of the St. Louis Super Regional. Indy Super typically has higher enrollment when it is held prior to the end of the Indiana state competition, so a fuller enrollment than last season can be expected.

Overall, no huge changes from 2016 to 2017, but still an exciting slate of events that will be here much faster than you think.

The following schedule contains a few regional-level competitions that are not affiliated with MFA or BOA, in addition to the BOA fall championship events. Some of these other competitions feature as many nationally-renowned participants and adjudicators as most BOA regionals. As other circuits and bands announce their notable 2017 competitions, they will be added to the schedule below.

Fall 2017 Schedule
*Italics indicate a regional-quality competition that is not affiliated with Music for All or Bands of America but consistently features nationally-renowned participants and adjudicators.

Sept. 16, 2017
Canton, Ohio — Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium
Powder Springs, Georgia — McEachern High School

Sept. 23, 2017
Austin, Texas — Kelly Reeves Athletic Complex
Clarksville, Tennessee — Austin Peay State University
Toledo, Ohio — University of Toledo

Sept. 30, 2017
*[Blue Springs, Missouri], Golden Regiment Invtl. — Blue Springs High School
McAllen, Texas — McAllen Veterans Memorial Stadium
*Owasso, [Oklahoma], Marching Invtl. — Owasso High School
Southlake, Texas — Dragon Stadium

Oct. 7, 2017
Conroe, Texas — Woodforest Bank Stadium
Dayton, Ohio — Welcome Stadium
Jacksonville, Alabama — Jacksonville State University
Newark, Delaware — The University of Delaware

Oct. 14, 2017
*[Austin, Texas], Texas Marching Classic — Kelly Reeves Athletic Complex
Midland, Texas — Grande Communications Stadium
*[Minneapolis, Minnesota], Youth in Music Championships — U.S. Bank Stadium
*[Tulsa, Oklahoma], Renegade Review — Union High School
Winston-Salem, North Carolina — Wake Forest University

Oct. 20–21, 2017
Indianapolis Super Regional — Lucas Oil Stadium
St. Louis Super Regional — The Dome at America's Center

Oct. 28, 2017
Atlanta Super Regional — Mercedes-Benz Stadium
San Jose, California — San Jose State University (tentative)
Southern California — Site TBD

Nov. 3–4, 2017
San Antonio Super Regional — Alamodome

Nov. 4, 2017
St. George, Utah — Desert Hills High School (tentative)

Nov. 9–11, 2017
Grand National Championships — Lucas Oil Stadium

Top 30 Rankings — Nov. 15, 2016 (Week 10)

This is a set of rankings from an older poll. We keep all our polls online for archival purposes. You might want to view the current Top 30 rankings or read how we determine rankings.

This year's Grand National Championships included a couple of significant firsts.

Carmel (IN) performs in Grand National Semifinals on Nov. 12, 2016,
at Lucas Oil Stadium. Later that evening, Carmel was named Grand
National champion for the 2016 season. // Photo by Jeremiah Wooten
For the first time ever, there was a tie for 12th place in semifinals, which means 13 bands were invited to perform in finals.

For the first time ever, there was a tie for first place in finals, which was broken by the GE score, in accordance with the BOA adjudication handbook.

For the third time ever, Carmel was named Grand National champion. They are now one of five schools to have won Grand Nationals three times, and one of only eight schools to have won more than once.

There are very few schools that are able to retain the level of excellence in competition that Carmel has for such a long period of time. And there's no reason to think they won't continue to be in the running for the national champion title for many more years to come.

Most of this week's adjustments reflect placements from the weekend's Grand Nationals, but most people will notice that Carmel is not in the No. 1 position. Unfortunately Flower Mound and Broken Arrow did not compete at Grand Nationals this year, but we're excited to see both of these groups return to Indianapolis next year.

The previous week's rankings are in parenthesis. Read about how we determine rankings.

Next 10, in alphabetical order: Ayala (CA), Bellevue West (NE), Cedar Ridge (TX), Center Grove (IN), Cypress Falls (TX), James F. Byrnes (SC), Keller (TX), Lawrence Township (IN), O'Fallon Township (IL), and Plymouth-Canton (MI).

2017 Grand National Championships

Enrolled Bands (99):
Ada H.S., OH
Adair County H.S., KY
Archbishop Alter H.S., OH
Ardrey Kell H.S., NC
Avon H.S., IN
Bassett H.S., VA
Bayard Rustin H.S., PA
Beechwood H.S., KY
Bellbrook H.S., OH
Bishop Fenwick H.S., OH
Blue Springs H.S., MO
Brentwood H.S., TN
Broken Arrow H.S., OK
Butler H.S., OH
Cabell Midland H.S., WV
Campbell County H.S., KY
Carlisle H.S., OH
Carmel H.S., IN
Carroll H.S., OH
Cary H.S., NC
Castle H.S., IN
Centennial H.S., TN
Center Grove H.S., IN
Centerville H.S., OH
Central Hardin H.S., KY
Colerain H.S., OH
Columbus North H.S., IN
Davenport Central H.S., IA
DeSoto Central H.S., MS
Dobyns-Bennett H.S., TN
East Central H.S., IN
East Clinton H.S., OH
Fairborn H.S., OH
Farragut H.S., TN
Father Ryan H.S., TN
Fishers H.S., IN
Flanagan H.S., FL
Flower Mound H.S., TX
Fort Mill H.S., SC
Franklin H.S., TN
Fred J. Page H.S., TN
Greendale H.S., WI
Hamilton H.S., OH
Highlands H.S., KY
Homestead H.S., IN
Indian Hill H.S., OH
James F. Byrnes H.S., SC
Jenison H.S., MI
La Salle H.S., OH
Lake Central H.S., IN
Lake Hamilton H.S., AR
Lake Park H.S., IL
Lakeland H.S., MI
Lakota West H.S., OH
Lawrence Township H.S., IN
Lebanon H.S., OH
Legend H.S., CO
Licking Valley H.S., OH
Logan Elm H.S., OH
Marcus H.S., TX
Marian Catholic H.S., IL
Marion Local H.S., OH
Martinsville H.S., IN
Maui H.S., HI
Meade County H.S., KY
Metamora Township H.S., IL
Miamisburg H.S., OH
Milford H.S., OH
Mililani H.S., HI
Milton-Union H.S., OH
Monrovia H.S., IN
Mount Pleasant H.S., MI
North Hardin H.S., KY
Northeastern H.S., OH
Norton H.S., OH
O'Fallon Township H.S., IL
Ooltewah H.S., TN
Owasso H.S., OK
Panther Creek H.S., NC
Piqua H.S., OH
Plymouth-Canton E.P., MI
Prosper H.S., TX
Round Rock H.S., TX
Russell County H.S., KY
Saint James School, AL
Stebbins H.S., OH
Sycamore H.S., OH
The Woodlands H.S., TX
Tippecanoe H.S., OH
Troy Athens H.S., MI
Union City H.S., TN
Union H.S., OK
Walled Lake Central H.S., MI
Walton H.S., GA
Warren Local H.S., OH
William Henry Harrison H.S., OH
William Mason H.S., OH
Wilmington H.S., OH
Winston Churchill H.S., TX

Returning 2016 Finalists (7):
1. Carmel H.S., IN

Previous Champions:
2016: Carmel H.S., IN
2015: Broken Arrow H.S., OK
2014: Tarpon Springs H.S., FL
2013: The Woodlands H.S., TX
2012: Carmel H.S., IN
2011: Broken Arrow H.S., OK

States Represented (23):
Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin.
The 2017 Grand National Championships will be held Nov. 9–11 at Lucas Oil Stadium. In 2016, Carmel was named Grand National Champion. Despite tying Avon in overall score, Carmel won because the group earned a higher general effect total score.

2017 St. George Regional

Enrolled Bands (26):
American Fork H.S., UT
Arbor View H.S., NV
Bingham H.S., UT
Chaffey H.S., CA
Clovis H.S., NM
Clovis West H.S., CA
Covina H.S., CA
Davis H.S., UT
Etiwanda H.S., CA
Fairview H.S., CO
Foothill H.S., NV
Green Canyon H.S., UT
Juan Diego Catholic H.S., UT
La Cueva H.S., NM
Lehi H.S., UT
Los Osos H.S., CA
Loveland H.S., CO
Montezuma-Cortez H.S., CO
Mountain Crest H.S., UT
Ridgeline H.S., UT
Sierra Vista H.S., NV
Sky View H.S., UT
Skyridge H.S., UT
Springville H.S., UT
Timpview H.S., UT
Westlake H.S., UT

Returning 2016 Finalists (5):
1. American Fork H.S., UT
3. Foothill H.S., NV
4. Sky View H.S., UT
5. Westlake H.S., UT
6. Davis H.S., UT

Previous Champions:
2016: American Fork H.S., UT
2015: American Fork H.S., UT
2014: American Fork H.S., UT
2013: American Fork H.S., UT
2012: American Fork H.S., UT
2011: Upland H.S., CA

States Represented (5):
California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, and Utah.
The 2017 St. George, Utah, Regional will be held Oct 28 at a location to be announced. In 2016, American Fork won its fifth consecutive regional championship.

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