Take me out to the ballgame
As the runner rounded third, Elon Student TV cameras zoomed in for the close play at home while our
broadcast students set the scene in staccato fashion.
Under a canopy of spring sunshine, our students made history by completing their first-ever
baseball broadcast. Six students manned four camera locations, and another four students - led by
producer Mike Livigne - worked out of our Elon Television production truck. ESTV Sports Director Ian
Smith and Jeff Procter stood at a broadcast table on the first-base side providing play-by-play and
Our broadcast students did well. So did the baseball team. Elon defeated Duke in a doubleheader,
6-4 and 3-1.
Upstairs in the press box, WSOE-FM student announcers Phil Elkins and Mike Jensen brought the game
to a radio audience. On campus, the Pendulum student newspaper would report the baseball triumphs
in word and image.
Just like the teamwork needed on the field to turn a double play, it takes a lot of teamwork to
pull together a sports broadcast.
Jay McMerty, coordinator of Elon Student TV, believes in hands-on experience.
"There's nothing quite like producing a three-hour sports broadcast from creation to completion,"
McMerty said. "Everything is done by students - from rolling out cable to directing the broadcast.
We are proud that Elon Student TV has expanded to include baseball."
A week later, under another brilliant sky, I felt the pull back to the ballpark and enjoyed
watching Elon pound Princeton, 12-4. Then, when the next weekend came, my son and I cheered the
Phoenix to 6-3 and 1-0 doubleheader wins over last season's regular-season conference champion
Winthrop. A few days later, the Phoenix (20-5 at the time of this writing) won two home games from
another Ivy League team, Brown.
During one of the games, the public-address announcer posed a "Jeopardy"-like answer for which
anyone in the crowd could supply the correct question. I won a large single-topping pizza from
Domino's for knowing that Bobby and Barry Bonds were the father-son duo who hit the most home runs
in the major leagues.
So my teenage son and I got a pizza by spending a beautiful Saturday at the ballpark. Meanwhile,
our Communications students at the ballpark are getting valuable experience in television, radio,
photography and sports writing.
Paul Parsons, Dean