Students go behind the scenes at Root Sports

Written By Josh Croup

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A small group of Point Park students had the opportunity to watch the live production of a Pittsburgh Penguins hockey broadcast from the studio and control room of Root Sports.

Students representing the School of Communications, the Pittsburgh Center for Sports Media and Marketing and the sports, arts and entertainment management program visited Root Sports’ North Shore studios Tuesday night.

The group went backstage at Root Sports and had the chance to see what it takes to produce and broadcast a Pittsburgh Penguins pregame and game telecast.

The students also met Point Park alumni who currently work at Root Sports including Marketing Coordinator Stephanie Spezialetti, Broadcast Associate Brian Lacek and Graphic Coordinator Craig Hall.

After touring the facility and learning about the history of the television network, students met Root Sports Anchor Rob King.

Senior broadcast reporting major Kyle Anthony said the highlight of his evening was the group question and answer session with King.

“I’m going to take away something that Rob King said about how doing play-by-play and color helped him in everything,” Anthony said. “I’m going to use that since I’ve done play-by-play and color in the past and apply that to my work ethic.”

The group watched the pregame and first intermission report from the control room and watched the first period from a conference room with a member of the Root Sports production staff.

Zach Aaron is preparing to graduate and get into the broadcasting industry. The Root Sports experience gave him an inside look at his field.
“It was great,” Aaron said. “I got to learn a lot of the behind the scenes aspects that go into a live production. It’s exactly the field that I want to get into so to be able to shadow the people that are doing exactly what I want to do is awesome.”

During the first intermission report, the group went in the studio to see King one more time and also met hockey analyst and former Pittsburgh Penguin Jay Caufield.

The night ended with a group picture with the on-air talent.

Anthony said he is doing similar jobs at U-View, Point Park’s television station, as the professionals at Root Sports.

 “I really enjoyed the experience,” Anthony said. “I think it gives us an in-depth look at the jobs that we might want to have and how different places do it on a different level from what we are at right now They do a lot of the same stuff we do, just on a greater scale. It shows myself and other people that came that we can work at that level.” 

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