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Goal-line cameras among WDAY-TV's enhancements for Bison football TV broadcasts this season

WDAY-TV adds more viewing angles for fans and Missouri Valley Football Conference video replay officials

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WDAY-TV operations manager Stacey Anderson, right, said more cameras have been added for North Dakota State football broadcasts this fall, including two goal-line cameras.
Mike Kapel / WDAY
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FARGO — WDAY-TV will provide fans and replay officials more viewing angles on its North Dakota State football broadcasts this fall.

WDAY, which is the exclusive television home for NDSU athletics, is adding three more cameras for football games this season, including two stationary down-the-line cameras on the goal lines for both end zones.

“We’ve added some goal-line cameras on the north and south goal lines to help us in getting the viewers another look at goal-line stuff as well the Missouri Valley with replay calls,” said Stacey Anderson, the operations manager at WDAY. “For fans to see and make their decisions of whether the ball is in the end zone or to help the officials.”

Anderson said WDAY supplies the replays for Missouri Valley Football Conference officials for all home games, including nonconference contests. The Bison season opener is slated for 2:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 3, against Drake at Gate City Bank Field at the Fargodome.

“We have the ability to enhance the view by zooming in digitally,” Anderson said of the goal-line cameras.

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Anderson cited a touchdown play in the NDSU-Albany game to start last season as an example of where a down-the-line camera could have been helpful.

Albany wide receiver Roy Alexander caught a quick pass and raced through the Bison defense for a 67-yard touchdown in the closing seconds of the first half. As Alexander crossed the goal line, NDSU cornerback Courtney Eubanks punched the ball loose. The play was reviewed, but not overturned. A goal-line camera could have provided a clearer view of whether the ball was punched out before Alexander crossed the goal line, or if the ball had broken the plane by the time Eubanks knocked the ball free.

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Albany’s Roy Alexander tumbles after North Dakota State's Courtney Eubanks knocks the ball from his grasp as Alexander crossed the goal line Saturday, Sept. 4, 2021, at Gate City Bank Field at the Fargodome.
Michael Vosburg / Forum Photo Editor

“I think for the average fan, the ability to see more angles is always a plus,” Anderson said. “I think NDSU fans are pretty knowledgeable football fans and people have a certain amount of expectation of what a game should look like on TV, and we’re trying to bring that and we’re always looking at ways to make things better.”

Anderson said the three additional cameras are part of an 11-camera setup at home games at Gate City Bank Field at the Fargodome. In addition to the cameras on the goal lines, Anderson said there is going to be a camera on a platform in the southeast corner of the Fargodome for enhanced viewing on that part of the field.

“It will be a little slightly higher than the field, so you are going to have things coming right at you with clearer sight lines,” Anderson said. “It’s going to get you tighter shots of players. A different angle of a replay, rather than something that’s right along the line of scrimmage. It’s something that’s coming to you or going away from you.”

Anderson said game broadcasts are slated to start 15 minutes before kickoff, which is five minutes earlier than last fall. That will allow WDAY to show NDSU’s tunnel walk for home games.

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“It’s to bring a little more atmosphere at home to the fans that are watching across the state,” Anderson said. “The feel and energy that comes from the Fargodome with the videos and then the tunnel walk. We decided to bring that to viewers, too.”

In addition, Anderson said in-game graphics have been updated for a fresher look. The digital first-down line will also remain a part of the broadcast.

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WDAY’s Dom Izzo is again doing play-by-play with former NDSU All-American Kyle Emanuel handling analysis for a second consecutive season. Logan Campbell is the sideline reporter.

WDAY-TV won't be able to broadcast NDSU's Sept. 17 game at Arizona and the Nov. 5 game at Western Illinois due to exclusive contracts.

The “Bison Game Day” pregame show is from 10-11 a.m. Saturdays on WDAY-TV and InForum.com with Izzo, Emanuel, Campbell and The Forum’s Jeff Kolpack. Anderson said WDAY is going to do more with tailgating on the pregame show to give viewers additional game-day flavor. Anderson said including elements like the tunnel walk and more tailgating coverage was in response to fan feedback.

“We’re going to build on what we’ve already done and add a few more things here and there for more robust coverage of the game,” Anderson said. “We’re always trying to make things look a little bit better.”

Peterson covers college athletics for The Forum, including Concordia College and Minnesota State Moorhead. He also covers the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks independent baseball team and helps out with North Dakota State football coverage. Peterson has been working at the newspaper since 1996.
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