Metrovision, SES Americom, Game Creek Video Donate Services for YES Network Gridiron Classic Telecast

By Ken Kerschbaumer

When the YES Network televises the third-annual Gridiron Classic college football game between University of Albany and Jacksonville University, it won’t feature the best teams in the nation, but it will be for the best cause. With the help of donated technical support from Metrovision, SES Americom, and Game Creek Video and sponsor support from DirecTV, the YES Network effort will help raise funds for the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation.

Ed Delaney, YES Network VP of operations, whose son Eddie is a redshirt freshman defensive end for Albany and was diagnosed with diabetes at age 6 (he wears an insulin pack strapped to his thigh during games), approached Tracy Dolgin, YES president/CEO, and John Filippelli, YES president of production and programming, about the idea of broadcasting the game.

“I knew our guys would go for it if we covered the production costs,” says Delaney. After the initial pitch, the network brass was all in.

With airtime in hand, Delaney began investigating how the event could be produced most cost-effectively. Metrovision majority owner John Brown and partner Jeff LaMarita donated an SD Hybrid truck that also had an uplink.

“Once we had the truck, we were off and running,” says Delaney. SES Americom’s Bryan McGuirk, president, Media and Enterprise Services, then stepped up with satellite time. And Game Creek Video President Pat Sullivan offered support gear, such as a Sony super slo-mo system.

The game will be shot with eight Sony HDC-950 SD cameras, six hard-wired and two handheld. One of the unique aspects of the production came courtesy of CP Communications, which donated wireless equipment to mike the head coaches, Albany’s defensive coordinator, and an Albany offensive tackle. “That’s something we usually would never get approval to do,” says Delaney.

The game will also be produced by A-level production and talent. “Everyone came in and wanted to be involved,” says Delaney.

The cause, however, is what the game is about. Delaney’s at the center point of a fundraising effort that offers $5,000 sponsors a ton of exposure, including two 30-second spots during the broadcast, tickets to the game (with free food and drink), a table for 10 guests at the dinner, five hotel rooms, transportation from New York City or Stamford, CT, tailgate party, and much more.

Those interested in taking part in the festivities should contact Ed Delaney at 917-608-7762 or via e-mail at edelaney@yesnetwork.com.