EBN soars through live broadcasts

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EBN anchors James Grant and Robbie Smith lead play calling and color commentary for the varsity football game versus Angleton September 25 on Hotze Field at Granger Stadium. The Eagles defeated the stout public school opponent handily with a final score of 31-14. (Photo credit Nick Silva)

Change can be good or bad, but for the Eagle Broadcast Network the live football game broadcasts this year are bringing excitement and thrills to people who tune in to see the Eagles on the gridiron.

The new features and innovative technology that come with these live broadcasts are allowing the EBN crew to show off their filming and commentating brilliance to viewers watching the games online.

This fall, EBN has introduced live student-run play-by-play during their live broadcasts of home football games. Student commentators Robby Smith and James Grant have showcased their inner Mike Tirico under the lights. They keep viewers informed and entertained while the Eagles battle their opponents on the field.

St. Thomas technology teacher and EBN moderator, Lance Dundee ’90, weighed in on the first broadcast and play-by-play of the 2015 football season. “I thought that it was great overall, despite the fact that some things need to be fixed such as the student play-by-play commentators talking over each other and not establishing clear roles as play-by-play and color guys,” Dundee said.

Junior Dominic Vela mans one of the steady-cam rigs. Photo by Mike Nebel.
Junior Dominic Vela mans one of the steady-cam rigs. Photo by Mike Nebel.

Dundee sees promise despite these weaknesses and believes that the EBN broadcasting crew will improve over the course of the next few broadcasts. “There are some things that we could have done better, but that just comes with experience, and going forward you just got to get experience,” Dundee said.

Dundee also points out the new addition of a sideline reporter for 2015. Having a sideline reporter for upcoming home football games will give the audience at home the chance to hear from various members of the St. Thomas communities and it will give the broadcast a more dynamic effect. “We will have a sideline reporter in the future who will hopefully be able to interview coaches, the athletic director, cheerleaders, teachers, and alumni,” Dundee said.

Some members of the EBN football broadcast team put their two cents in with regards to the first broadcast with live play-by-play. Junior Dominic Vela enjoyed working the first broadcast with play-by-play and has gotten a lot out of working football games for EBN.

“I think it has gone pretty well, and over time as we have gotten to know each other a little bit better, we have started to work better together, I have had a lot of fun experiences, like getting to know these guys better and working with them and the technology, while learning the craft.”

-Dominic Vela, Junior

Senior Adrian Fonseca offered some insight into his role and experience as a member of the EBN football broadcast team. “I do videography and help film the football games, and I think that it is a lot of fun, and I really enjoy the fact that we are able to do that,” Fonseca said.

For the videography and filming, Fonseca sees this as his future career, and he is ready to pursue it starting now with helping to film the football games.

“It [filming] is definitely something that I am very interested in and I hope to pursue that later on in my life. I think that it will be very awesome if we are able to film more games than just football and do events other than sports in the future.”

-Adrian Fonseca, Senior

Senior Thomas Quintero, another member of the EBN team, offered his thoughts on his role as camera man. “I like to press buttons and point cameras at things, so pointing my camera at things like football players is a lot of fun,” Quintero said.

Overall, the Eagle Broadcast Network is on a roll, in the studio and on the sidelines, and they look to build on their progress and experience while they dazzle audiences at home with spectacular filming and riveting commentary of home football games.

Watch James and Robbie in action as they commentate the “St. Thomas Eagles vs Concordia Lutheran Crusaders” game which took place Oct. 29:


James Grant is a senior at St. Thomas.