ESPN at the CFP Championship: A Look Back at the ‘Mammoth’ Production
It’s the first truly big day on the sports-production calendar, the College Football Playoff National Championship Game, and ESPN again treated it like the crown jewel it is, with a production stunning in both scope and scale.
Here’s a quick look at some of the highlights of SVG’s coverage from the 2017 College Football Playoff National Championship Game in Tampa, Fl.
There were 111 cameras inside the stadium supporting ESPN’s efforts in producing the main game telecast, the 13 additional MegaCast options, and three studio sets around the building. Ninety-five of those cameras were pointed at the game between Alabama and Clemson, with nine super-slow-motion cameras and five 4K-capable cameras accompanying.
In its fourth year, ESPN’s MegaCast has never shied away from rolling the dice and offering new and innovative ways of presenting one of sport’s biggest events. For this year’s CFP National Championship Game, there were as many as 14 ways across ESPN’s various linear and digital channels to consume Monday’s rematch between Alabama and Clemson.
ESPN tried something unusual at Monday’s game, placing a 4K-capable super-slow-motion camera on SkyCam. The network debuted the new Sony HDC-P43, a POV-style camera featuring a three–⅔-in. 4K imaging device and B4 lens mount by affixing it to SkyCam.
To supplement the cabling capabilities of Raymond James Stadium and its surrounding areas, ESPN worked closely with the Tampa Sports Authority to help augment the cable offerings in and around the building, running more than 15 miles of its own fiber to make possible the game production and supplemental studio programming in and around the building.
ESPN’s social-media team fed game and behind-the-scenes content to all of the major social-media platforms but took a special approach to SnapChat with a preproduced show unique to the popular platform.
On the field, ESPN deployed eight parabolic microphones, as well as a new microphone/mount combination that the network first tried out at the 2016 Indianapolis 500.