Purdue's band to be without World's Largest Drum vs. Notre Dame, first time since 1979

Purdue Friday stated that the World's Largest Drum was officially too large for Notre Dame Stadium.
Purdue's All-American Band will perform its first halftime show without its huge bass drum since 1979.

Aaron Yoder, a spokesperson for the university's orchestras and bands, stated that the University of Notre Dame has informed our Band that they will not be allowed to transport the World's Largest Drum into their tunnel. "Notre Dame Athletics has limited the use of their main tunnel to their football team and their band. This is the only entrance that is large enough to accommodate the Drum. According to our sources, visiting bands and teams must use a smaller tunnel. Our Drum measures approximately 10 feet high on its carriage, and weighs 565 pounds. It doesn't fit in the other tunnel.

Purdue used the main tunnel for drum transport in past matchups against the Fighting Irish. However, Notre Dame Stadium was renovated in 2017, which included a visitor tunnel. In 2012, the Boilermakers played their last South Bend match.

Although the exact dimensions of the World's Largest Drum are still unknown, a spokesperson for Purdue's bands or orchestras said that it is approximately 10 feet tall on its carriage. It also weighs 565 pounds. Photo by Michael Allio/Icon Sportswire

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the World's Largest Drum. It was built for the first time in 1921. It was last seen in the band's possession in 1979 when it disappeared from storage. Later, it was found behind an air conditioner and accessible only via ladder. This led to speculations that it had been stolen.

Purdue says that in the early days of train travel, Paul Spotts Emrick (band director) had the drum made and worked with the New York Central Railway on finding train cars that could accommodate it. It is now carried in the back of a pickup truck.

According to university history, "The exact dimensions of Purdue’s drum were kept secret in order to preserve the mystery surrounding it."

Texas has "Big Bertha", a similar-sized bass drum (8 feet tall). It was created for the University of Chicago around the same period. Purdue and Texas have a long-standing rivalry over who has the largest drum in the world. Missouri's "Big Mo", which was introduced in 2011, stands 9 feet tall.