If you've been to any college basketball game, you've no doubt heard the pep band. But likely you've never paid attention to the members of the band, unless you have a connection.
But if you've looked at KU's pep band, there is always a white hat bobbing up and down to the beat that he is pounding out.
The white KU hat belongs to senior math education major Chris Carter, the energetic, drumming leader of the band.
"I start it and the band kicks in, that way the music is a seemless flow," Carter said. "We like to think we are part of the game - we are definitely a part of the environment."
For the last three years, Carter has been front and center at Allen Fieldhouse leading the charge before the game, during timeouts and afterward, win or lose.
"Going from the second to top row, stuck in the shadows, to having, in my opinion, one of the best seats in all of Allen Fieldhouse, it's amazing," Carter said.
A native of Lawrence, Carter grew up in the shadow of the University and went to games growing up. The only thing he could see from his parent's seats was the band. In the middle of the piano lessons, he spotted the drummer and a life goal was set.
"It just fused together, that I wanted to be in the pep band," Carter said.
Carter doesn't wear earplugs, even though he said his mother wants him to. He said wearing earplugs takes away from the magical environment that is Allen Fieldhouse on gameday.
"That sound is deafening but it's awesome," Carter said. "If I wore those earplugs, I wouldn't be getting it. I respect the fieldhouse too much."
As good as Carter's been to the band and fieldhouse, the fieldhouse has been good back to him. The white hat and his energy have made him much more recognizable than your average band member.
"Brent Musberger comes up and talks to me sometimes - he's pretty cool," Carter said. "ESPN's College Gameday gave me a shout out when they came here."
When he graduates next semester, the band will go on without him but it won't be nearly as recognizable.