Friday, February 22, 2013

Maryland 83 Duke 81

Here's the post I promised about my footage from the Duke game:

Last Saturday I went to the Maryland basketball game versus Duke. My friends and I took shifts waiting in line outside the Comcast Center from 6 a.m. to 3p.m., when students were admitted to the arena.

Regardless of where you stood in line, all the hours waiting were wasted when the doors opened. Students raced up the hill and pushed toward the gates, trying to get as close to the front as possible. I was pressed between friends and strangers in a wave of students that overwhelmed the security officers trying to contain the crowd.

When we finally made it inside, we found seats with friends who had grabbed a row earlier. We then learned the flash mob dance. Our performance during the media time out surprised fans and the video of it was widely circulated the next day.

The game, of course, was an emotional roller coaster. Maryland students are so invested in what some call a "fantasy rivalry" with Duke. Every time we stole the ball from the opponent, made a free throw, or earned any points, the student section exploded with screams and cheers. Whenever our team lost the ball or missed a shot, a collective moan or groan resounded through the arena.

It was a nail-biter at the end, but with successful free throws from Seth Allen, we made it over the threshold to topple Duke. Students were already crowding the steps so they they rush the court. We were sitting close to the floor and my friends started climbing over seats to get ever closer.

As soon as the buzzer sounded, it was a mad dash to the court. I grabbed railings and seats to keep from falling. In their effort to get on the floor themselves, students helped push me down to the court. Once on solid ground, we raced, arms in the air, cell phones in our hands, to celebrate and capture the moment.

I could describe what I saw, but I'll just let you watch and see for yourself:

Click here to see it on the Baltimore Sun's website! More clicks=better rank for my videos!

After filming the revelry for posterity, I texted my supervisor to see if he wanted the footage. I knew a photographer was there from the Sun but I doubt he jumped into the wild crowd to take pictures or video. My text didn't go through until I had left the stadium, and with his confirmation, I copied my best footage to a Drop Box folder from my cell phone.

The rest is history, I suppose. The raw video was posted online shortly after I sent it over and it has done well on the website. The video was viewed 87 times that night through the next day, making it the eighth most popular video on the website that weekend.

This experience helped me see that I can enjoy awesome experiences like rushing the court while also capturing it as a journalist. Sometimes I am so interested in recording everything that I don't truly experience it myself. Instead of shooting this footage for the Baltimore Sun, I shot it for myself using the skills I have acquired through this internship. Because of my attentiveness to a steady shot, I captured high quality video suitable for the website...which is so awesome and rewarding!

Look for my next blog with videos I worked on today!

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