SAIT Trojans collegiate sports teams to hit the airwaves on Shaw TV Calgary

CALGARY (December 12, 2011)-- Who's red and white and watched all over? Well, starting in January . . . the SAIT Trojans.

As part of its ongoing commitment to community content, Shaw TV Calgary will be broadcasting five Trojans sports events on television -- that's Channel 10 for Shaw cable subscribers -- between mid-January and early February.

Shaw TV's coverage of SAIT Trojans athletics will utilize the talents of SAIT Polytechnic's Radio, Television and Broadcast News (RTBN) students, who have been involved in full-fledged TV productions of SAIT hockey, basketball, and volleyball games under the Trojans Productions banner since October 2010.

With student crews providing slow-motion replays, graphics, animation, and multiple camera angles, Trojans Productions -- a collaboration between the SAIT Trojans athletics department and SAIT's School of Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) -- is on the cutting edge of campus sports TV production, with no peer on the Canadian post-secondary scene.

"Obviously, this is a great partnership for the Trojans," says SAIT Trojans athletics manager Mark Pretzlaff. "We look at this as another opportunity to expand the brand and provide greater exposure for SAIT, the Trojans, and our student athletes.

"Saying that, not only does this relationship benefit the Trojans -- but we look for it to further promote SAIT's RTBN program and students. You never know -- maybe this will lead to a job or two for some of our students," adds Pretzlaff.

"Overall, we are very pleased to work with Shaw, and we hope that this can lead to bigger and better things."

This five-game pilot project will begin with the Trojan men's hockey team's Friday, Jan. 13 home game at SAIT Arena versus the Briercrest College Clippers, to be broadcast "live-to-tape" by Shaw TV Calgary on Saturday, Jan. 14 from 2 to 4 p.m. and again on Sunday, Jan. 15 from 7 to 9 a.m.

Shaw TV Calgary is expected to broadcast more Trojans action down the road, based on the success of the pilot program -- possibly even live games, thanks to the capabilities of the Trojans Productions venture.

"Shaw TV is thrilled to showcase not only the skills of post-secondary athletes, but also the skills that broadcasters of the future are learning during their two-year (RTBN) program at SAIT," says Joe Wilcox, Southern Alberta regional manager of community programming for Shaw Cablesystems GP. "Shaw's community programming is about giving access to the local airwaves, and this is but one example."

Trojans Productions crews include 10 to 15 members in total, including a director, audio operator, switcher, replay operator, three to four camera operators, play-by-play announcers, and colour commentators.

"Up until now, Trojans Productions broadcasts have been shown on our giant LED display monitors in the SAIT Arena and the Campus Centre gym, as well as webcasts," says Billie Rae Busby, the SAIT Trojans' marketing and communications co-ordinator. "Our partnership with Shaw represents a great chance to promote the Trojans to a larger, more diverse audience."

The Trojans Productions suite in the Campus Centre uses twin Newtek Tricaster systems, which have the capabilities of a mobile broadcasting truck's control room in a box the size of a microwave oven. "This latest Tricaster technology gives students access to similar tools and procedures they'll experience when they enter the professional broadcast world of sports coverage," notes Wilcox.

Shaw TV Calgary's initial coverage schedule of SAIT Trojans athletics, on cable Channel 10, is as follows:
 Jan. 13 men's hockey vs. Briercrest College to be broadcast Jan. 14 (2 to 4 p.m.) and Jan. 15 (7 to 9 a.m.);
 Jan. 20 women's or men's basketball vs. Red Deer College to be broadcast Jan. 21 (2 to 4 p.m.) and Jan. 22 (7 to 9 a.m.);
 Jan. 27 women's or men's basketball vs. Mount Royal University to be broadcast Jan. 28 (2 to 4 p.m.) and Jan. 29 (7 to 9 a.m.);
 Feb. 3 women's or men's volleyball vs. Lethbridge College to be broadcast Feb. 4 (2 to 4 p.m.) and Feb. 5 (7 to 9 a.m.);
 Feb. 10 women's hockey vs. NAIT to be broadcast Feb. 11 (2 to 4 p.m.) and Feb. 12 (7 to 9 a.m.).

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