College coaches only get to attend about two percent of high school and junior college games because their seasons are in full swing at the same time as the athletes they are recruiting. When William Warfield started streaming games online in 2008, he simply wanted to provide deserving student athletes with a platform to showcase their skills to college coaches.
PrepSpin.com uses Blackmagic Design’s ATEM 1 M/E Production Switcher, UltraStudio Mini Recorder capture and playback device, H.264 Pro Recorder, Intensity Pro capture and playback card, ATEM Camera Converters and numerous Mini Converters, as well as today’s top streaming services, to create professional quality online videos and broadcasts. PrepSpin.com prefers to stream games online using Volar Video’s streaming platform with Ad Trigger Pro™ and Production Truck® technology.
Available both live and on demand, PrepSpin.com’s online videos are a valuable tool for student athletes to send links of their performances to prospective schools or even distant family members and friends. And television networks and stadiums often rely on PrepSpin.com to broadcast the games live on the local stations and throughout the facilities. Averaging 200 games and 10 major events per year, this is no small feat.
“Our coverage has provided college coaches with instant access to athletes from around the country without the coaches breaking any recruiting violations,” said William Warfield, founder, owner and producer, PrepSpin.com. “The days of sending a tape or DVD are over. The power of the Internet has created a way for us to provide coaches, family and friends with a link to an online video, saving time and money.”
PrepSpin.com also services elite sporting camps, professional sporting events, coaching conferences and corporate meetings all over the U.S., but its focus has always been on student athletes. With the mission to give them more opportunity for athletic scholarships and to advance through to college athletics, PrepSpin.com has experienced amazing growth and now works with some of the top sports organizations in the U.S., including:
- Perfect Game USA, the world's largest baseball scouting service.
- iHigh.com, which provides schools, colleges and other youth related organizations with free web tools and video streaming that connect sports and activities to the premier Global Youth Network.
- National Junior College Athletic Association, the national governing body for two year college athletics, covering junior college and community colleges nationwide.
- Football University, an invitation only, one of a kind football training experience focusing on developing and enhancing the playmaking ability and skill of elite-level athletes in 6th to 11th grade. The NFL’s top coaches and players provide the training.
Creating Professional Quality Broadcasts
Regardless of the event or location, William relies on Blackmagic Design to create professional quality videos and broadcasts.
“We discovered Blackmagic Design two years ago, and it has really turned our basic productions into television like entertainment,” said William. “I’ve broadcast more than 300 events and 100 high school games using it without a single problem.”
Prior to Blackmagic Design, William used software programs for live switching, which got the job done but lacked professional quality. The software programs allowed William to switch multiple cameras, but in doing so, used a lot of CPU and couldn’t perform at the same quality level as a hardware switcher. The software programs also lacked valuable outputs.
“After researching a variety of hardware switchers, Blackmagic Design was the clear choice. There is no better value on the market than Blackmagic Design. The ATEM is not only affordable and easy to use, but it has the tools we need and more,” said William.
ATEM 1 M/E Production Switcher includes four SDI inputs, four HDMI inputs for consumer cameras or computers, analog input and SDI, HDMI and analog outputs, including down converted SDI output and USB 3.0. ATEM 1 M/E Production Switcher provides professional features, such as stinger and DVE transitions, six keyers, multi view, built in media players, in a portable and compact two RU size.
“The ATEM 1 M/E Production Switcher is loaded with inputs and outputs that allow us to provide several destinations of a source. We can provide the local cable company or television station with an SDI out using the three SDI outputs. And we can even provide the arena or the concession stand with a clean program feed, all at the same time,” explained William.
“We can also use an HDMI input from another laptop to feed our graphics using the ATEM’s six keyers, or we can use a router connected to the ATEM that allows us to send Photoshop overlays over the network,” he added.
From Small Town to Worldwide
During games and events, the ATEM 1 M/E Production Switcher is connected to an H.264 Pro Recorder and fed into a MacBook Pro via USB to record HD video into Blackmagic Design’s Media Express software. Media Express is included with all Blackmagic Design capture and playback solutions and helps users manage and organize video media. Game day action is captured via four HDMI cameras, with Mini Converters HDMI to SDI converting the feeds to run via SDI cables. During baseball games, William also uses a fifth camera located in centerfield with an ATEM Camera Converter on each end of a 1,000 ft. fiber cable.
When streaming live on the Internet, William uses the ATEM 1 M/E Production Switcher’s SDI program output into a ViewCast Niagara 4100 to deliver HD content to the web. Or, if he uses a platform that doesn’t support HD, William uses an SD NTSC output to a ViewCast Osprey 460e card on a desktop computer.
“Blackmagic Design’s products allow us to take a small town high school game and make it into a worldwide event,” said William. “Not only have the products helped the PrepSpin.com brand, but they’re part of our continued effort to promote the student athletes that give it all on the field but might not get noticed. If we can help one athlete get into college with an athletic scholarship, it’s worth it.”
PrepSpin.com’s views have exceeded 7 million on iHigh.com, and the company now broadcasts an average of 200 high school games each year. More importantly, scholarships have increased more than 40 percent according to local Kentucky athletic directors, and hundreds of student athletes are receiving a college education.
PrepSpin.com is dedicated to providing student athletes with a valuable platform to showcase their skills to college coaches through online, television quality sports broadcasts. PrepSpin.com’s on demand archives are a valuable tool for students to send links out to prospective schools, or even distant family members. College coaches only view about two percent of high school games and events because their season is in full swing at the same time as high schools. PrepSpin.com provides college coaches with the opportunity to watch videos during their free time without breaking any recruiting violations. Relive the game, relive the performance and relive that great play.