Bodycams, live drone shots and more real-time stats: A roundup of the production innovation at the Men’s Final Four basketball tournament

University of Akron basketball player Enrique Freeman is outfitted with MindFly’s body-camera system prior to CBS Sports Network’s live broadcast of the NABC College All-Star Game in Glendale, AZ, on Friday.

The best men’s college basketball teams in the US battled it out in Phoenix at the 2024 Men’s Final Four over the weekend, culminating in the NCAA championship game on Monday (8 April). The tournament is billed by the NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association) as one of the most anticipated and watched US sporting events, and it’s also an opportunity for production teams to try out some new tech. SVG’s US editorial team was at State Farm Stadium in Arizona to find out about the latest tools deployed to cover the contest. Reporting by Brandon Costa and Kristian Hernández.

Live From NCAA Men’s Final Four: CBS Sports Debuts Live Camera Worn by Players at NABC College All-Star Game

CBS Sports took a swing at delivering a live view of a player via a body-camera system during Friday night’s NABC College All-Star Game on Friday night, an event hosted as part of NCAA Men’s Basketball Final Four festivities. Read more here

Live From NCAA Men’s Final Four: TNT Sports, CBS Sports Capitalize on Greater Freedom to Fly Live Drone Inside, Bring Back SkyCam to Supplement Massive Production

A live drone from CNN AIR will fly during game coverage at the NCAA Men’s Basketball Final Four.

After first introducing limited use of a live drove inside the stadium bowl at last year’s Final Four, broadcasters were granted greater freedom to fly and take live shots from inside the stadium during game action for the huge production, which featured more than 75 cameras inside State Farm Stadium.

“I think there’s a great opportunity to showcase the drone and show the value that it can bring to the production,” said Chris Brown, VP, Technology and Operations at TNT Sports. I think we’ve made some good [progress] with the NCAA and with [State Farm Stadium] so we are definitely looking to lean more heavily into it, both on the studio and the game side. I think it’s going to create some unique looks and a different way to present the game.” In addition to the drone, SkyCam also returned to the camera lineup. Read more here

Live From NCAA Men’s Final Four: Van Wagner Feeds Shot Chart Data Into Gameday Presentation at State Farm Stadium

Fans piled into the seats of State Farm Stadium for three games between Saturday and Monday, and to entertain those crowds, Van Wagner was at the controls of the in-venue production.

One addition to their gameday execution: a new shot chart that relies on Genius Sports’ real-time data and statistics will be displayed during timeouts and other stoppages in play. Read more here


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