Behind the Scenes of CSPN

Behind+the+Scenes+of+CSPN

Caden Fernandez

Most students and faculty at Chaminade know of CSPN, the club that runs the streaming, photography, and news for Chaminade sports. Interviews and short podcasts with students or faculty are also organized by CSPN. CSPN always has a table at the annual Open House, and many members of the Chaminade family have probably watched a sports game online when they could not attend in person, especially during the school year following of the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, many people outside of CSPN itself are unaware of how the sports games reach the viewers at home through streaming and social media. Before the Homecoming Football Game last month, I was able go behind-the-scenes with CSPN and get a closer look at the full broadcasting process during a Chaminade sports game.

I arrived at Chaminade at 5:20, forty minutes before kickoff, and walked down Cemetery Lane to the football field and up into the bleachers. I first met with my cousin Gus Stromberg 26’, one of the sports photographers, and we talked for a little while about his role and his Instagram page where he posts the photos from many Chaminade games. A few moments later, Mr. Bell arrived and led me up the bleachers and into the press box.

We stepped inside and walked into the center of the box. For those who do not know, the press box is made up of five small segments. There are two small closed-off rooms on the ends for the football coaches of both teams, and there are three smaller open segments for CSPN, the announcers, and the scoreboard operators. Mr. Bell led me over to the CSPN section, where he set a laptop down on a desk full of cords and other electronic devices. As Mr. Bell opened his laptop, I began to ask him about how they turned the camera footage of the game into an active livestream.

CSPN mainly utilizes a program called Production Truck to control the footage from the game, and it helps create a full link between the cameras, the CSPN computers, and the streaming services. The main camera on the outside of the press box is connected via cord to a USB docking station, which is connected to the CSPN computer where the footage is compiled. From the computer, the Production Truck software allows for the changing of camera angles, graphics, the changing of the score, and other livestream features. Simple phone cameras can also be linked to Production Truck and accessed by CSPN through the NDI HX Camera app for more coverage of the game. Production Truck then uploads the footage from the game to their own servers, where it can be drawn by MSHSAA TV or YouTube to share the content with viewers on their phones, tablets, or computers. After the games are completed, the livestream is saved as a video that can be rewatched at any time.

Along with Mr. Bell, Dr. Knickman and Mr. Tull are a part of the CSPN staff. Some students often volunteer to help and can even do commentary on the live games. Some of the other people in the press box are Mr. Grumich, who controls the PA system, and Coach Derkits and Mr. Massa, who controlled the scoreboard for the game.

Learning about CSPN and experiencing its process for covering a sports game was very interesting and informative, especially having used multiple CSPN livestreams before. The work done by CSPN and its members to produce a quality livestream for fans, players, and coaches should not be understated, and CSPN is a huge privilege that allows fans to watch Chaminade sports from almost anywhere.

Pictures by Caden Fernandez 25’ and Gus Stromberg 26’

Follow CSPN on *CSPN’s social media accounts

Follow Gus on Instagram at @gusstromberg and @gusstrompics