It may be the 20th season of NBC broadcasting Notre Dame football, but there are plenty of firsts coming this season, as NBC rolls out some cutting edge features for fans.
It was announced today that NBC will debut ActionCam, and overhead cable-camera system that’ll provide viewers with never-before-seen angles. It’s the same camera angle that was successfully tested during the Blue and Gold game this spring.
Also, in addition to digital and mobile features like applications for the iPhone and iPad, NBC Sports has reached an international agreement with Eurosport to broadcast games in Europe and Asia. While that’ll help Notre Dame fans all around the globe see the Irish play, NBCSports.com will also be live-streaming a simulcast of the network broadcast as well as one additional online-only bonus camera throughout the game.
From the official press release:
For the first time, the entire Notre Dame-NBC Sports schedule will be streamed live on NBCSports.com. “Notre Dame Extra” will feature a simulcast of the broadcast feed plus one additional online-only bonus camera throughout the game.
“Notre Dame Extra will employ a full HD-quality player using Microsoft Silverlight and Smooth Streaming that will help set new benchmarks for live streaming video cross-platform. The video player will include full DVR functionality allowing the user to pause and scroll back-and-forth — even review replays in “slo-mo” — all while watching live video.
Extra will also feature live coverage of the Notre Dame and visiting teams’ bands at halftime, in-game highlights, as well as a live, online-only postgame that will include head coach Brian Kelly’s press conference.
Here’s a basic translation: Best deal ever.
For those of you that will be working, or say… sitting in the press box, following the game online, with full DVR functionality will be incredible. It’ll also make for a less frenetic pace to the game day live-blog, so I can actually give you guys some decent analysis instead of screaming to figure out where the ball is spotted.
Hopefully those of you that depend on the internet for a live-feed of the game will set up a small window on their screen to follow the liveblog as well, because rest assured fans, I’ll still be pounding the keys during games, giving you every bit of insight I can give.
Notre Dame’s recruiting class grew on Monday. And in adding 6-foot-3 Memphis cornerback Donte Vaughn, it grew considerably.
The Irish added another jumbo-sized skill player in Vaughn, beating out a slew of SEC offers for the intriguing cover man. Vaughn picked Notre Dame over offers from Auburn, LSU, Miami, Ole Miss, Mississippi State, Tennessee and Texas A&M among others.
He made the announcement on Monday, his 18th birthday:
It remains to be seen if Vaughn can run like a true cornerback. But his length certainly gives him a skill-set that doesn’t currently exist on the Notre Dame roster.
Interestingly enough, Vaughn’s commitment comes a cycle after Brian VanGorder made news by going after out-of-profile coverman Shaun Crawford, immediately offering the 5-foot-9 cornerback after taking over for Bob Diaco, who passed because of Crawford’s size. An ACL injury cut short Crawford’s freshman season before it got started, but not before Crawford already proved he’ll be a valuable piece of the Irish secondary for years to come.
Vaughn is another freaky athlete in a class that already features British Columbia’s Chase Claypool. With a safety depth chart that’s likely turning over quite a bit in the next two seasons, Vaughn can clearly shift over if that’s needed, though Notre Dame adding length like Vaughn clearly points to some of the shifting trends after Richard Sherman went from an average wide receiver to one of the best cornerbacks in football, and Vaughn will be asked to play on the outside.
Vaughn is the 15th member of Notre Dame’s 2016 signing class. He is the fifth defensive back, joining safeties D.J. Morgan, Jalen Elliott and Spencer Perry along with cornerback Julian Love. The Irish project to take one more.
With Notre Dame expecting another huge recruiting weekend with USC coming to town, it’ll be very interesting to see how the Irish staff close out this recruiting class.
When Notre Dame takes on rival USC on Saturday, they’ll be facing a Trojans team without a head coach. USC athletic director Pat Haden announced today that effective immediately, head coach Steve Sarkisian will be taking an indefinite leave of absence. Offensive coordinator Clay Helton will be interim head coach.
While the details are still coming into focus, multiple reports point to another incident with alcohol. Haden himself said that he made the decision after speaking with Sarkisian.
“I called Steve and talked to him. It was very clear to me that he is not healthy. I asked him to take an indefinite leave of absence,” Haden said, according to multiple Los Angeles media reports.
Sarkisian’s decision-making and alcohol use came into the spotlight this August when the head coach made inappropriate statements at a large booster event. Sarkisian addressed the media after the incident, acknowledged mixing medication with alcohol, and vowed to seek help and not to make the same mistake again.
Today’s incident appears to be a relapse, and one that requires immediate attention. Helton ran the team’s practice today and steps back into an interim head coaching role, a job he handled after the Trojans fired Lane Kiffin and Ed Orgeron left after not being awarded the permanent job.
“Fortunately or unfortunately, I have been in this situation before,” Helton said. “Once again, I’m very fortunate to have a group of first-class kids that are extremely talented and want to do something special here.”
This is the second major sports persona to leave his season to seek treatment in recent weeks. New York Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia left the team to seek treatment for alcohol issues. The Trojans are coming off an upset loss to Washington on Thursday night, losing 17-12 as a 17-point favorite.