2012 Big 10 Football Championship

  • 2012-1129

I haven’t been posting much because most of my shoots over the last month, have been the routine football and basketball games. But this week I’m working the Big Ten Championship game at the Lucas Oil Stadium. It will be three days of long hours specially Saturday night.

Day 1: Thursday Nov 29th
Lucas Oil StadiumHad a 9am Crew Call, but as usual, I got to the stadium early. Ended up waiting about a half hour for others to arrive. Got our Credentials and Parking Passes and then we were told that we will be building out stage for Saturday’s show.

We are not shooting the game, our group will be shooting the Pre and Post Shows and the stage for these shows is right at the edge of the football field. The stage is built on tracks so that it can be pulled back for the game and pushed into positions for the show so that the Big 10 Talent can look like they’re sitting at their desk on the field.

Stage PartsThe real challenge will be getting that stage into position for the Halftime Show. We will only have about 2 or 3 minutes the push both the stage and camera platform into position, and setup the cameras, lights and talent. And do the same thing in reverse after Halftime so that the game can continue.

Pano of Lucas Oil Stadium field.We spent hours putting together that humongous, heavy metal stage and laying out the tracks that it will move on, only to have the director and his people come out and tell us, that they would like to have the whole thing moved, 5 feet to the right!

It was a very lovely day.

Day 2: Friday Nov 30th
The jib that will be used for the show Saturday evening.Our Crew Call was for 8am. We put the finishing touches to the stage and then spent some time unpacking and loading the awkward and heavy announcers desk on to the stage.

But most of the morning was taken up with finding and setting up and faxing cameras, building the Jib and running a few cables.

Finished Stage, Camera and announcers, Dave Revsine, Glen Mason, Gerry DiNardo, Howard Griffith.After lunch, we spent a fair amount of time just sittings around waiting for the announcers to show up for the afternoon feed to Chicago. During that feed the announcers, Dave Revsine, Glen Mason, Gerry DiNardo and Howard Griffith, talked about the game tomorrow between the Wisconsin Badgers and the Nebraska Cornhuskers and interviewed both Head Coaches.

Wisconsin Players getting photo with our announcers.After the interviews, some of the Wisconsin players were on the field and they came over to the desk to get pictures taken with the announcers.

We were suppose to have a full rehearsal of moving the stage into and out of it’s positions, but our Tech Manager just had us move the stage into it’s game position and lock it off. No rehearsals this time, unlike last year. So we were out of there by 5:30p instead of the scheduled 7:00p. Which is a good thing because tomorrow will be a long one.

Day 3: Saturday Dec 1st
This is what the game is all about.Crew Call wasn’t until 12 noon, but I knew coming in, that it was going to be a very long day.

The announcers did a few on-air promos, but most of our afternoon was spent waiting. Which seems to always be a large part of our jobs.

At 2p we had a box lunch out in the production truck area and then most of our camera crew group spent the rest of that waiting time up in the Press Box area, high up in the stadium.

The view from the Press BoxI must admit that the Press Box had a impressive view of the field and it ran it’s entire length.

We were expected to be back on the field around 6p and the Pre-Game show started at 6:30p then ran for an hour. When the show was over with we moved then locked the stage back into it’s game position. After that, we were free to watch the game.
Such that it was!
The Wisconsin Badgers demolished the Nebraska Cornhuskers 70-31.
It wasn’t even close!

The view from the North End Zone. The blue circle marks where our stage area was located.I spent the first half of the game up in the Press Box, the 3nd quarter sitting in the North End Zone area and the 4th quarter sitting on the game field.

After the game we ran into a little problem with rolling the stage back out. One of the wheels ran off the track, but luckily the stage was already in it’s final position and since we didn’t have to move it again, we left it as is.

Where they park all of the production trucks.The Post Game show started around Midnight and didn’t finish until after 1a Sunday morning. Once the show was over with we had to breakdown the cameras, lights and audio, and everything had to be hauled back to the production trucks.

And then, the real work started…
…that humongous, heavy metal stage and tracks had to be taken apart.

There is nothing like working late in the evening (or early in the morning) in what seems like, a completely empty Lucas Oil Stadium.

With all hands on deck, we finished about 4:00am Sunday morning.

To Tech Manager, “Are we cleared?”
Tech Manager, “Yes, you’re all cleared!”
High-fives all around, now lets get the hell out of here!

I just have to show you what I think is one of the best runs that I have ever seen. Quarterback Taylor Martinez’s ran for an impressive TD in this game, and his team still lost.

WNBA Finals 2012

  • 2012-1021

My Game CAMI shot 3 games this weekend.

On Friday I shot a High School Sectional 1st Round game, Zionsville vs Brownsburg.

The underdog Zionsville won.

Yesterday, Saturday night, I shot the Pacers last preseason game, Pacers vs. Grizzlies.

The Pacers won that too.

But tonight, after so many years of shooting, I finally shot my first Pro Championship game. Fever vs. Lynx, WNBA Game 4 of best out of 5 series with the Fever leading 2 games to 1.

A 30 second time-out.Though you could feel the tension in the air, I tried to shoot this game just like any other. But with more cameras, more people, more Indian Chiefs watching everything that we do, maintaining a calm mind set could be hard to do.

Try and forget all of that and just shoot the game. Make sure that you follow your shot list, and try not to blow it by making a mistake!

Well, I didn’t make any mistakes!
I rather enjoyed the game.
It was, Fun To Do!

The Fever have Won. The awards ceremony is over with, and it's now time for me to break this camera down and go home.Things did start to get a little tight toward the end when it became apparent that the Fever were going to win the WNBA Championship. The shot calls from the director were coming a lot faster and the tension went up 10 fold.

The feeling was…

“We only got one shot at this, so get it right!”

With all the shouting, crying, hugging, jubilation, interviews, awards ceremony and crowd shots, there was plenty to shoot. Just get a good shot, wait for the director’s call, then quickly find your next moment.

After the game was over with, I had to break my camera down to get it back to the studio, before I could leave.

The email that I got from the Director read:

Great game last night!

I didn’t get the chance to say thanks to everyone last night, with all the craziness happening,  but SUPER THANKS again for the hard work.  Everyone in the arena, fans and staff, all noticed.  We ALL got lots of praise for the show.

WE KICKED A@#! ~ Chris

It’s always good to know that you did good!

FT. Wayne Snider @ Dwenger

  • 2012-1006

You know, this was the kind of game that all sports cameraman dread having to shoot. Rainy, cold, wet and very miserable!

First of all, the game was in Ft. Wayne, so it took 2 hours to drive up there and the same to get home and it rained almost all the way up.

It continue to rain throughout the whole game. If there had been lightning with that rain, the game would have been delayed or called. No such luck!
Just a slow Drizzle rain.
And the winter like cold!

I spend a lot of my time trying to keep my equipment dry.
Which was a losing cause!
I could hear on my headset calls from other crew members who’s equipment is starting to die because of the water.
I’ve just stepped into a pool of water and sunk all the way up to my ankle.
My socks are completely soaked. Both of them!
I can feel my toes squishing in my shoes.
My fingers are freezing making it hard to work the camera.
My viewfinder keeps fogging up.
My nose is running and the snot is beginning to freeze on my upper lip.
I got a mountain of rain gear on making it hard to move.
But there’s still water running down my back, and I can’t get to it!
And on top of everything else…
…I gotta pee.

And it’s only the beginning of the third quarter!

Who cares who’s winning!
Let’s just get this game from Hell over with!

Colt’s Kickoff Luncheon

  • 2012-0829

I’ve been looking forward to this event for awhile because it’s the big luncheon that the Indianapolis Colts give their players just before the regular season starts.

They play their last preseason game tomorrow night against the Cincinnati Bengals in Lucas Oil Stadium. Then Friday is the luncheon. I also hear, that right after that lunch, they cut their Final Players!

A last meal, and then you die.

Anyhow, it’s a 3 day shoot.

Day 1 – Wed. 08.29.12
Bring in all the containers and sorting them. The luncheon will take place in the Grand Ballroom of the Westin Hotel.
About an hour was taken up just getting the equipment up to the ballroom, then sorting out the containers for stage, audio, video etc.

The video switcher will be staged out in a back hallway. This will be a 3 camera The video switcher will be setup at the end of a back hallway.shoot. One long camera in the back. A side camera about midway and a stage camera.

Everyone helped in building the main truss that will cover the entire back wall. It will hold 2 screens, back lights and curtains.

Testing the lights before raising the truss.Four more truss were hang perpendicular to the main one. They will hold more lights, speakers and projectors. Then 2 more truss farther back that will hold more stage lights.

It took about 5 hours just to get that setup, along with lights tested and focused.

Everything has been lifted up.As I was leaving, the hotel was building the stage.

Day 2 – Thur. 08.30.12
Today was a long day.

The morning was kind of slow because we had to wait for more equipment to arrive.

But once that got there, we had more cable to run, cameras to set up, another projector to hang and both projectors needed to be framed and focused.

In the hallway by the Exit doors.The biggest problem though was the switcher. Markeys had been told, by the hotel, where we could set up our switcher. In the hallway, by the Exit doors. There were a number of Markeys people who were concerned about that location, but no, the hotel confirmed it, that’s where we can set it up.

Eric spent all day connecting up, what they like to refer to as “video world”, the switcher, and wouldn’t you know it, about 4pm, down comes another hotel manager to tell us,
“You can’t put that there! That’s an Emergency Exit!”


By the time that I left at 5pm, I still don’t think that the problem had been completely resolved. Though it does look like the switcher will stay, but with a few modifications.

Day 3 – Fri. 08.31.12
A lot of morning activities. Hotel employees running around getting tables ready. A lot of Colts employees running around doing whatever they do and being very nervous about it.

Final Solution for the Video World Exit Door problem.I did notice that the Video World Exit problem had a Final Solution.

For me, it was pretty much the usual, hurry up and wait. All we had to do was the Rehearsal… that never came. We ended up shooting the event blind, using only the script.

My camera view of the stage.It started off with opening words from the Colts owner, Jim Irsay. Then the players were introduced with a lot of pomp and fog. One Colts player per table. Then they ate lunch.

But they didn’t feed the crew even though Markey’s, I think, is a sponsor of this event.

One Colts player per table.After lunch, former Colts Headcoach Tony Dungy was the Key Note Speaker. He also interview the new coach Chuck Pagano and 6 of the Colt players one of which was the new Colts Quarterback, Andrew Luck.

The event went off without a hitch. All that was left was the breakdown, which I didn’t have to do.

I was doubled-booked for today, so after the event was over with, I was on my way to a TV40 football game.

2012 AMA Pro Flat Track Race

  • 2012-0819

Winner's Stage being built.This is my third year shooting the American Motorcyclist Association Pro Flat Track Race at the fair grounds.

It would have been my 4th year, but last year’s race was cancelled because of the stage that collapsed during a outdoor concert by Sugarland.

Our Engineer Micah, in front of his production truck.A lot of cable had to be laid down in order to cover the 1 mile ‘Track of Champions’ with 5 cameras. But most of that was done by another crew Friday night/early Saturday morning.

By the time that we got there Saturday noon, we still had a lot of cabling and equipment to setup and Fax out in order to be ready for the 3 o-clock practice runs.

Professional flat track motorcycle racer Nichole Cheza signing autographs.After the practice runs, we had some time to walk over and see a little of the Indiana State Fair.

As always, I was on camera 5, at the stage. It was my job to get the start of the race. To cover the race in front of the grandstand and to shoot the winners on the stage. We also had cameras at each of the 4 turns.

Now, here's a big motorcycle race fan!The last 2 years I did this by myself, so I was always pretty much shooting for 3 hours straight. But this year, I had Casey working with me, so I was able to take some breaks.

Though I’m not a big motorcycle race fan, the race is fun to watch and also very LOUD on the ears.

Start of one of the racesThere is a certain technique in trying to shoot a motorcycle, and keep it in view as it blows by you on the straight-a-way at over a 100 mph. Fun-To-Do!

The real hard work though is when the race is all over with, and we had to roll up all of the cable that had been laid around the track. This year, it went pretty quickly. We were out of there by 1 am Sunday morning.

Some video of one of the practice runs earlier in the day.

A little bit of video from the 2009 race.

Superbowl Village Friday Feb 3nd – Overcrowding

  • 2012-0203


8p – As I stand here on the Pepsi Stage waiting to shoot my 8:30p show, all I can see from the stage is wall to wall people. This is unreal!

I’m not all that sure that there will be a show. The talent can’t get to the stage. Our cameras can’t get here. Nobody can move!

9:43p – The last Pepsi show was finally cancelled. Larry did make it to the stage with 2 cameras. What should have been a 5 minute walk took him a half hour.

Of course, with the show cancelled we had to walk both cameras back. We took a round-about route. Two blocks north, 2 blocks east, and then down to the Pacer stadium.


We had to secure the tripods at the stage because there was no way we would make it back with 2 cameras and 2 tripods with one of them on a dolly.

I was exhausted!
I watched the final show at the Verizon stage from the control room.

Verizon Stage

  • Mike Epps/Morris Day and the Time
  • En Vogue
  • Fitz & the Tantrums

Pepsi Stage

  • DJ Limelight/Blackberry Jam
  • Bashiri Asad
  • Gentleman Alphonse
  • Cancelled

This is how it looked Friday night at the Pepsi Stage.
They were packed in shoulder to shoulder with very little room to move.

All Superbowl XLVI Village Post

  1. SBV Feb 5th – Superbowl Sunday (2/5/2012)
  2. SBV Sat Feb 4th (2/4/2012)
  3. Superbowl Village Friday Feb 3nd – Overcrowding (2/3/2012)
  4. SBV Thu Feb 2nd (2/2/2012)
  5. SBV Wed Feb 1st (2/1/2012)
  6. SBV Tue Jan 31st (1/31/2012)
  7. SBV Mon Jan 30th (1/30/2012)
  8. SBV Sun Jan 29th (1/29/2012)
  9. SBV Sat Jan 28th (1/28/2012)
  10. SBV Fri Jan 27th Opening Day (1/27/2012)
  11. SBV Thu Jan 26th Setup (1/26/2012)
  12. Superbowl Begins (1/25/2012)