About Mountain West
Mountain West is a US regional sports network that provides coverage of college sports events across the Mountain West Conference for Soccer, Volleyball, Basketball, Football, Track, Swimming, Baseball, Softball, Gymnastics, and more. Mountain West’s network primarily broadcasts digital streams that are picked up by local Over-The-Air TV stations to sports fans across the region. This includes live broadcasts, replays of games, interviews with players and coaches, and analysis and commentary from experts.
We had the chance to work with Brian Tripp, the Associate Commissioner for Broadcast Production for the Mountain West Conference, who manages the look and quality of the conference’s broadcasts.
How is Mountain West Creating Their Productions?
Each school has different budgets and philosophies on how to handle broadcasts so it can be all over the map for how each production is set up.
“I’m dealing with 12 different schools, with different budgets and different philosophies on how to handle broadcasts. Some of my schools have large control rooms with expensive switchers and some schools are asked to broadcast with a single computer and everything in between. Most of these schools go well above and beyond these basics, but minimum standards are multi-camera shots (depending on the sport), at least one announcer, and live graphics,” explains Brian.
Across their 12 campuses these setups can include NewTek switchers of varying sizes, Grass Valley switchers, or VMix. Most of the schools use NewTek’s 3-play replay machines, while cameras are largely up to the individual school.
How is Mountain West Using Titler Live?
Mountain West uses Titler Live Sport and Titler Live Broadcast to feed data into their system to produce live scores, clocks, and stat updates for athletes. To do this, they have a scorebug on the screen, which is being fed through XML or Scorebridge, allowing for player data to be fed into lower 3rds or scorebug popups to enhance their productions.
“Many of our schools move fly packs or small switchers from venue to venue daily so being able to use Titler Live off a laptop computer is convenient, yet the product looks so good on air, you would never know it’s coming from a small computer. With Titler live, there is no added work for those schools and in most cases the workflow is easier, and the on-air product looks much better.” says Brian.
Prior to using NewBlue’s Titler Live, many of the Mountain West schools used to do simple PNG graphics with text over the top with either wipe or dissolve on and off the screen.
How Does Titler Live’s Features Enhance Their Productions?
Not all schools in the conference can budget for the most expensive systems to run their graphics and Titler Live has provided the Mountain West Conference with an affordable solution.
Brian continues by saying, “I have schools that have never had any animation graphics on their broadcasts because they could not afford the more expensive systems, like XPression. Being able to link to live data feeds for just about any sport has made things so much simpler for many of my institutional producers. The ability to manually input information quickly and easily is a huge help.”
This fall, Mountain West rolled out a new graphics package. Brian mentions that when “working with NewBlue, we were able to get all our animation elements and graphic looks configured in a matter of days not weeks.” from his standpoint “the ease of use combined with NewBlue’s customer service has made our broadcasts shine this year.”