This is the second part of a series of blogs on BYUtv with managing director Derek Marquis. This blog focuses on why BYU’s athletic department and BYUtv staff were so bent on doing an Independent football media day back on July 12 in the new Broadcasting Building next to the Marriott Center.
Here is the discussion.
Q Media Day is a month behind us and as we expected the BYU Broadcasting Building was center stage. Was that intentional and if so did you accomplish what you had hoped to accomplish?
A It was intentional –not just because we wanted to show off the building but because we wanted to do some things that typically arent done at conference media days. Most conferences will have the coaches and a few players in a ballroom at a hotel with all of the schools in the conference together, thus providing really limited opportunities for any one school to be center stage.
And while some conference are now starting to offer online VOD sound bites or possibly even online streaming of select addresses from their media day events, we knew with these new broadcasting studios that we could do something more than that. We also wanted to offer the excitement of the day to not only the media but to Cougar fans worldwide with the live shows we did on BYUtv, the live web chats with coaches and players and the other television, radio and digital media offerings of the day.
Q And did it work? Did it come off as you had hoped and expected?
A Just as we had hoped and better than we expected. Really. When there is that much going on, some of which tested the real capacity of our facility for the very first time, you hope for the best but expect a few hiccups.
Q What are some examples of things that tested the facility?
A Well, for one, this was the first time we have produced multiple live events on the same day from the building. We did a morning state-of-the-football program panel discussion with Coach Mendenhall, the Athletic Director, Tom Holmoe and ESPN VP of Programming, Dave Brown.
Later in the afternoon we did another live program with BYU legends, Lavell Edwards, and former players Ty Detmer, Trevor Matich and Brian Kehl. And another first for us, was that we not only did that show live but we also pulled in Steve Young live from Palo Alto for that show.
Most people dont understand what it takes to pull off a live show like this. Getting Steve into the building via a satellite link in such a way that he could hear all of the others on the panel and for them to hear him, while also transmitting that show live on nationwide television, nationwide radio on Sirius XM and worldwide on the internet as well as uplinking and simulcasting it live with ESPN as well, that was a good test for our new building.
Between those two shows we did a special edition of our True Blue with Dave McCann sports magazine show and we also did live video chats throughout the day online in both English and Spanish where fans could interact with the coaches and players, including with Coach Doman and several players that speak Spanish from their mission days. And between all of that we were doing live satellite uplinks back to Bristol, Connecticut for ESPN with Coach Mendenhall who was a guest on a couple of ESPN shows as well as several live radio shows for some of the local and national media operating during the day out of our building. And to our delight and a little to our surprise, we really didnt have any hiccups worth writing home about — or at least none that audiences probably noticed. It was a great test for us as we look forward to what is possible for football season.