Stadium Hops Aboard the REMI Train for 2021-22 College Hoops Season
OTT service will split production 50-50 between onsite and REMI production
With early-season college-hoops tournaments off and running, Stadium has already live-streamed dozens of college basketball games across the country, with hundreds more on deck. After a 2020-21 season fraught with pandemic-related challenges, the OTT service is striving for a sense of normalcy this season and plans to produce about half its games onsite and half using the REMI production model. This marks the first time Stadium will be remotely producing a large number of games.
“We are very proud of what our ops team has accomplished,” says Joe Riley, executive producer/SVP, production, Stadium. “It was a difficult year plus, but we got through it. We took great pride in producing our games as we have always done: all personnel onsite. This will be the first year that we are using the at-home/REMI model, [with] about half REMI and half onsite.”
Stadium has once again enlisted Rush Media and LTN to produce and backhaul its live college-basketball-game coverage. The REMI model will be used for West Coast Conference and Mountain West Conference games; a truck and crew onsite will handle coverage of the Conference USA, Patriot League, and Southern Conference.
For the REMI shows, announcers, producer, audio personnel, and lead replay operator will be the only crew members onsite. There will be a vehicle onsite featuring a replicated monitor wall, with staff at home controlling all its equipment remotely.
Riley adds that, thus far, Stadium’s college-basketball productions have largely been a return to pre-COVID conditions. Although the production teams have more on-floor access to players and coaches this season, Stadium continues to ensure that crews abide by all necessary safety protocols.
“We made it through the pandemic,” he says, “and, so far, the games are returning to normal. [Last year], Rush Media and LTN did a great job of making sure all crew members were tested on a regular basis. Everyone made sure to take all the necessary precautions — getting vaccinated, tested, masks — to make sure that all crew members felt safe while onsite.
“While we have gained more access to players and coaches,” he continues, “we are making sure to follow federal and university guidelines when it comes preproduction meetings, postgame interviews, etc.”
Stadium considers all its games “A games,” using the same equipment complement no matter the teams or conference. For basketball, the setup includes four cameras, two replay servers, a full audio complement, graphics operator, graphics AP, and a Bally Bar scorebug operator.
One new production element this year will be Stadium’s use of QR codes to allow fans to interact directly with the broadcast. During broadcasts, they can use the codes to vote for Best Fan Base, Fan of the Game, and Player of the Game.
With plenty of high-profile games on its slate of games this season, Riley says Stadium is primed for an exciting run through the rest of 2021 and into 2022.
“We have some great teams/matchups on our schedule,” he notes. “UAB, Louisiana Tech, WKU, San Diego St., Colorado State, Nevada, BYU, and USF [are] all predicted to finish top three in [their] respective conferences.”