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99 for 99 - #86: "Fight, Fight For Buffalo!" The Victory March Becomes UB's Fight Song

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99 for 99 takes a look at the 99 biggest moments in UB Football history in anticipation of the 99th Season of UB Football which begins on September 1st, 2012. These moments are not in any order, however the top 10 moments have been saved for last.

October 15, 1960 - Youngstown State 13, Buffalo 40. During the game "UB Victory March" is selected as official Fight Song of UB.

In 1955, the Spectrum announced a song contest to create a fight song. It was open to students, faculty and alumni, but only 10 submissions were received. As a result of the low response rate, the contest was cancelled.

A judge of the contest, Robert Mois, (who was also a founder of the UB Music department) decided to compose a song on his own. In 1956 he created the UB Victory March. The song was not well publicized and did not catch on with the students.

In 1960, a new song named "Buffalo Fight Song" was commissioned to replace the UB Victory March. On October 15th, UB hosted Youngstown. During the game, the band played 4 songs, including UB "Victory March" and "Buffalo Fight Song" and allowed the students to sing along and choose their favorite. The students selected Victory March due to the ease of singing it, and the spirit the song embodied.

When the Bulls Football program ended in 1970, the Pride of the East Band followed suit in 1972. When football returned in 1977, the band did not. It would take 27 years, for the band to return as the Thunder of the East Band in 1999. When the band returned, Victory March was played as the official fight song, but the official lyrics were lost, so they just didn't sing any lyrics.

The peculiar, music only fight song came to light nationally, when on August 8, 2000 Rick Reilly penned a column in Sports Illustrated about Matt Nelson, a fan who could sing 115 of 120 fight songs on command. Nelson could not sing Buffalo's song because the Victory March had no lyrics.

The next year, Tuba player John Zaepfel tracked down Mois, who created new lyrics for the song.

2000 Lyrics:

Fight, Fight for Buffalo, be proud to fight for your dear Blue and White
So Hit 'em high! Hit 'em low! Throw 'em high! Throw 'em low!
Fight for your dear old Bulls! Huh!
Cheer, cheer for Buffalo, our spirit will be with you 'till the end.
So play the game as best you can for the glory of our dear Buffalo!

The lyrics to the fight song were recently altered, and currently are:

Current Lyrics:

Fight, Fight for Buffalo, be proud to fight for your dear Blue and White
So, thunder through, Go Blue! Give a Cheer, never fear!
Don't stop 'till we have won!
Cheer, cheer for Buffalo, our spirit will be with you 'till the end
So show your colors proud and true for the glory of our dear Buffalo!