The Rose Bowl halftime show traditionally includes performances by the bands of the two participating schools. The 2018 Rose Bowl halftime show will feature performances by the Pride of Oklahoma and the Georgia Redcoat Band.

The greatest halftime hoax of Rose Bowl history came during the intermission of the 1961 game between the University of Minnesota Golden Gophers and University of Washington Huskies. Long unhappy at their exclusion from the annual contest, a group of students from nearby Caltech tampered with the audience's instructions for the halftime flip-cards. What was supposed to depict a husky was changed to a beaver, and then the 2,200 fans held up cards to spell "CALTECH" in the bleachers. The events unfolded on national television, much to the chagrin of the Washington band, which stopped playing.