SAGU to Stream All Home Football Games Live
WAXAHACHIE, Texas --This semester, SAGU will begin broadcasting select athletic home games, live over the internet, free of cost.
The web-based broadcasts will be filmed in high-definition. SAGU is the only institution in the Central States Football League to produce their games this season, and the only ones in the Red River Athletic Conference to produce them in Hi-Def.
The project is a collaboration among SAGU's Media Services, Marketing, and Information Technology offices.
John Cookman, the Director of Media Services, says the product's distinguishing mark will be the TV broadcast quality. "Fans should notice the difference," he said in late August.
Cookman also pointed out the crew working to produce this project is comprised of about 80% students. "This will be ;an academically directed endeavor."
"This helps put us on a national and global playing field," he continued. "It will help show who we are. In opening the door, I believe the broadcasts will generate growth, academically, and increase the number of media degrees being sought. At SAGU, we love sports and communications, and are advancing in collegiate media technology."
Another distinguishing feature is the availability of streaming to iPhone, iPad, and wi-fi enabled iPods. The features are directly tied to a new iPhone-enabled website that is accessible by simply visiting the SAGU homepage on one of those devices. Look for the SAGUtv button.
A link for Android devices is also available from the player on the athletic website. However, Android streaming is dependent upon the speed and specifications of the owned Android device. A number of SAGU visitors have also tuned in via their Windows mobile devices.
The live stream will be available here for standard computer devices.
SAGU Sports Live debuts this Saturday, September 4, with the broadcast of the football home opener against Austin College at 7:00 PM (CST). The pre-game show starts at 6:45 PM.
The second broadcast will be a historic occasion. SAGU will battle with North Dakota's Trinity Bible College in the first-ever football game between Assemblies of God institutions. That game is set for September 18 with a noon (CST) kickoff. Other home games slated on the SAGU Sports Network include dates on October 26 (Northwestern Oklahoma State University), November 6 (Haskell Indian Nations) and November 13 (Texas College). The Lions 2010 Homecoming game is on November 6. The last three football game broadcasts are set to begin at 1:45 PM for the pre-game show, followed by a 2 PM kickoff.
For fans who miss the live broadcast, they will be available through video on demand for a limited time following the event.
SAGU will also produce 10 home basketball doubleheaders, featuring the men's and women's teams. A schedule will be posted on the university athetic website. Both teams have qualified for the NAIA 32-team national tournament in recent years, including the Lady Lions in the spring of this season.
"We are very excited about bringing these games as a service to family, friends and fans of the university," stated Dr. Kermit Bridges, the president at Southwestern. "It reflects very well of the quality and growth we're experiencing." He may be interviewed, live, at halftime of the September 4th game.
"It is my hope these broadcasts will assist in recruitment for athletes and by exposing prospects to our programs," Dr. Bridges added.
Veteran Head Coach of the football Lions, Jesse Godding, added: "The capacity to have our games available to parents, alumni, and potential recruits provides enhanced visibility and strengthens our program quality. We are grateful to the administration and media services for allocating the resources necessary to make this venture possible."
It was Coach Godding, himself, who initiated things. "When I joined the staff at Southwestern two years ago," Cookman explained, "the coach approached me and asked if I knew anything about streaming video on the internet, because I have this idea about putting our games on-line. And here we are today!"
While Cookman is the producer, students will coordinate much of everything else. Landon Perry is the director and Tim Roberts mans one of several cameras. A team of students make up a staff of sideline reporters, journalists and researchers, headed by Danielle Chambers and Krystle Sonmore.
"It is an exciting time to be a part of the Media Services department," Perry said after filming a promo last week. "As a communication arts student here, I have many opportunities to get up-to-date and relevant on-the-job training through video shoots, chapel broadcasts and now, sports broadcasts. What other A/G (Assembly of God) college can you get such training?"
"Our sports streaming is going to set SAGU on the map as a professional, high end broadcast training school. I am excited that I can be one of the team members that are making this happen," he continued.
"My hopes are that our viewing audience is entertained, that prospective students are influenced to enroll at SAGU, and that our broadcast students gain the needed experience to go into the professional world equipped for any job," Perry concluded.
Roberts says, "SAGU Sports Live gives students a chance at real world, live sports broadcasting," he said. "It will showcase our growing media program to the world, and I hope people will tune in and see a broadcast not unlike one you would catch on TV on Saturday afternoon."
While the first season targets football and basketball, discussions to expand to other athletic programs are already underway.