Before Tuesday’s well-executed court-storming after Robert Morris’s NIT upset win over Kentucky on ESPN, cameras caught the sign above during one of the returns from commercial break. Which got us thinking – is there a strategy that works best for ensuring YOUR sign will make it on air during a game. Producer Eric Mosley shares some insight:
“There really isn’t a standard formula or practice in regards to which signs we use on the air. Our director usually pans the crowd before the game and we see what signs are creative, funny and most importantly, appropriate to use when cutting around during the game. They will also identify any signs that are inappropriate and which ones we should avoid using if they are insulting or profane. Sometimes we will use [the shots] in edited packages if they seem to fit the mood or theme we are trying to portray.”
Welcome to another edition of the Fan Central Mailbag. Remember, if you have an ESPN-related question, follow us @ESPN_FanCentral and use #FanCentralMB to tweet your questions. You can also e-mail them to FanCentral@ESPN.com.
Before we dive into your latest batch of questions, here’s a quick schedule update. Baseball Tonight (@ESPN_BBTN) debuts this Monday at 2:30 p.m. ET on ESPN2. This season’s Baseball Tonight Goodyear Express Tour starts Monday at the World Champion San Francisco Giants’ spring training site in Scottsdale, Ariz. Baseball Tonight will begin at 3 p.m. the rest of next week. Here’s the full spring training tour schedule.
Now, onto your questions . . .
There was a story on SportsCenter about an email [Baltimore] Ravens coach John Harbaugh received from someone named Mike, who is physically challenged. The story talked about how the team was inspired by the email. Is that story available for me to watch again? — Merle
This is a great story that everyone should watch at least once. A quick summary: 21-year-old Ravens fan Matthew Jeffers, who has Skeletal Dysplasia, sent Harbaugh an inspirational email titled A Reason to Win following the eventual Super Bowl Champion Ravens’ third consecutive loss heading into Week 16 of the season.
When will the NCAA men’s basketball Bubble Watch be available? — Justincontinue reading…
Today’s 24-hour marathon of college basketball culminates with the State Farm Champions Classic, the prime time doubleheader showcasing four of the all-time winningest men’s college basketball programs.
The matchups at Atlanta’s Georgia Dome, site of this year’s Final Four, will pit No. 14 Michigan State vs. No. 7 Kansas (7 p.m. ET) and No. 8 Duke vs. No. 3 Kentucky (9 p.m.). Both games will also be available on ESPN 3D and WatchESPN.
ESPN launched the Champions Classic in 2011 at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Kentucky defeated Kansas (75-65) in what became a preview of the National Championship game and Duke beat Michigan State (74-69). The third installment of the event is already slated for 2013 at the United Center in Chicago: Michigan State vs. Kentucky and Kansas vs. Duke.
“Having Michigan St., Kansas, Kentucky and Duke in one place, playing head-to-head to start the season is a dream doubleheader for ESPN,” said Senior Coordinating Producer Jay Levy.
“It is one that the fans enjoyed last year in New York City, one that they’ll enjoy this year in Atlanta and again next year in Chicago.”
Looking beyond the matchups, director Doug Holmes is a little more technical in his approach.
He talks about the differences in covering games from a dome this year compared to the 2011 event which originated from one of the world’s most famous arenas. continue reading…
This women’s college basketball season is shaping up to be one of historic proportions.
Combine a solid ESPN schedule across platforms and add in near-unprecedented excitement about the return of the top three players in the country. The result is a fever pitch for the women’s game.
That trio — Elena Delle Donne (Delaware), Skylar Diggins (Notre Dame) and Brittney Griner (Baylor) — took time to visit ESPN last month, where the ladies went through the famed “Car Wash.” Interviews were conducted with Mike & Mike in the Morning, First Take, Dan Lebatard is Highly Questionable, UNITE, ESPN.com and ESPN Radio, plus espnWchronicled the day with behind-the-scenes video.
Griner is coming off an NCAA National Championship with Baylor and is the 2012 Wade Trophy recipient; Diggins is Notre Dame’s star and her Twitter account (@SkyDigg4) has the most followers of any collegiate athlete (265K); and Delle Donne was the nation’s leading scorer last season as a junior (28.1 ppg).
In anticipation of tonight’s tip-off (featuring Griner’s No. 1 Baylor team vs. No. 6 Kentucky, 6 p.m. ET on ESPN2), the trio of players offer their impressions of visiting ESPN.
What was the best part of returning to ESPN – since you left your internship? Diggins: Coming back to Bristol and seeing so many people who helped teach me so much over the summer was incredibly rewarding. It reminded me of just how valuable and unique my espnW internship was, and I’ll always be grateful to everyone at ESPN and espnW for what I learned during my time there.
How would you summarize your day at ESPN? Griner: There were so many favorite parts about the trip to ESPN but highlights included getting to see all of the behind-the-scenes action; sitting in the makeup chair being pampered; meeting Elena and her mom and just getting to know both players (Elena and Skylar) on an off-the-floor basis.
How does your visit to ESPN help grow the sport of women’s basketball? Delle Donne: It’s amazing and I am glad to be a part of the first women’s basketball ‘Car Wash’ at ESPN. I think it’s great and it shows women’s basketball is really on the rise. ESPN is trying to publicize the sport and get it out there — to have people aware that women’s basketball is big.
“Jake,” directed by Jonathan Hock, debuts on Grantland today as the website continues its “30 for 30″ short film series. Author Alfred Slote is pictured above.
Click HERE to listen or visit iTunes to download the podcast and be sure to SUBSCRIBE to the Front & Center podcast. Also, make sure to check out the all new ESPN Radio app, now available for the iPad.
Jonathan Hock has won eight Emmys and widespread acclaim as one of the premiere sports documentarians of his generation. It would be unfair to ask him what his favorite project has been.
But if you listen to his voice in the above podcast when he discusses the reverence he has for author Alfred Slote, you will get the sneaking suspicion that the short film, Jake, which debuted today on Grantland, is right near the top of his list.
Special illustrations were created for Hock’s film as the book did not include drawings when it was published in 1971.
Through ESPN’s 30 for 30 film series, Hock, 48, has become known for incredible filmmaking and unmatched storytelling. Whether it was with Unguarded or The Best that Never Was or any of Hock’s other riveting documentaries, the Long Island native consistently delivers some of the most compelling content in the genre.
ESPN’s new series All-Access Kentucky will premiere tonight at 7 ET, offering an inside look at the lives of the University of Kentucky Wildcats as they prepare for the upcoming NCAA men’s basketball season.
The show follows the day-to-day activities of Coach John Calipari and the Cats as they attempt to repeat as Division I national champions — minus last season’s starters.
All-Access Kentucky goes behind the scenes at pre-dawn workouts as new recruits work to learn the Kentucky system and get to know each other, the coaching staff and the returning players. ESPN’s cameras follow Coach Cal from his kitchen to the court, from the airport to the office.
Episode 1 focuses on freshman Nerlens Noel, the top 2012 recruit in the nation according to ESPN. The 6-foot, 10-inch center is trying to get acclimated to the team while fans draw comparisons to last year’s Wildcats center, No. 1 overall 2012 NBA draft pick Anthony Davis.
ESPN’s VP of Original Programming and Production Jamie Horowitz has been on-site at the University of Kentucky and recently spoke to Front Row about the series. continue reading…
ESPN game announcers Dave O'Brien (l) and Doris Burke have covered both men's and women's college basketball this season.
DENVER — The 2011-12 NCAA men’s and women’s basketball seasons are just two games away from wrapping up for the year.
Veteran ESPN announcers Dave O’Brien and Doris Burke have seen a lot of basketball this season, traveling the country calling both men’s and women’s contests.
At the conclusion of the NCAA women’s national semifinal games in Denver Sunday night, O’Brien and Burke offered their opinions on which teams would come out on top.
The duo will have the call of the women’s national title game Tuesday at 8:30 p.m. on ESPN and ESPN3 when undefeated Baylor will play 2011 national runner-up Notre Dame.
In addition, ESPN will feature additional content for both the men’s game — being played tonight in New Orleans as Kentucky meets Kansas — and women’s title games across its platforms, including SportsCenter, espnW, ESPN.com, ESPNEWS, WatchESPN and ESPN International.