Lights, cameras, action! Sounds like a movie shoot on location. The location was Mountaineer Field in Morgantown, WV. The action was the ESPN Thursday night television production crew setting up for the prime time football match-up between University of South Florida and WVU.
The West Liberty Media Arts students were able to get in on a little of the action! Chuck Scatterday, professor in the Media Arts Program and 17-year veteran of ESPN, escorted his students on a field trip to Mountaineer Stadium for a look inside a live sports network production set-up.
The all-access, behind-the-scenes, two-hour tour left the 15 students hungry for more “sports TV productions” at West Liberty University. Daniel Benson, Justin Long and others asked, “can’t we just get one of these trucks to do WLU games?” Alexa Perko, Logan Smith and Zach Cochran loved the high angle for cameras, and Louis Griffith was especially fond of the 100-foot towers for the sky cam. Danielle Zacheri, Brittni Lindgren and Amber Williams took note of the massive scale of content that ESPN produces for just one game. The tape room time with Aladdin the ISO producer and the B-unit (a truck devoted specifically to graphics) was exciting and informative. Brandon Humphreys, a student from Dr. Matthew Harder’s class also participated in the trip. Brandon was ready to sign on to work with the audio crew for the game! Todd Ullom, Tony Viola, Elizabeth Pemberton and Alex King all commented on how it was interesting to see all of the pieces come together during the pre-production.
Exposing WLU students to real-life experiences such as a live sports broadcast set-up enables them to more thoroughly understand the intricacies involved in live television and then work to apply what they’ve observed and learned to productions on WLTV. A big thank you to all on the crew of ESPN’s Thursday Night Game of the Week for spending valuable time with the students.