Showing The American baseball tourney through a fence screams ‘bush league’

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AAC stream
The view of baseball action from the American Athletic Conference Tournament in the WGNO-TV studios

In you ever wanted to know what the American Athletic Conference thought about college baseball, then all you need to do is look through the fence.

That’s right, the fence.

When I walked into the office this week, the Tulane-East Carolina game feed (TV term) was up. I thought our video staff (who records anything I need at anytime of day) had made a huge mistake.

I would end up watching the Green Wave on a feed through a chain linked fence. There were no graphics provided, and when the camera operator zoomed out to show the whole field, the pitcher was covered by a chain link.

Frankly, I have seen better video from the Cooperstown feed that shows little leaguers playing in up-state New York each summer. This was not how I envisioned watching post-season baseball.

In the office, three monitors were showing college baseball. We were watching The American, the Southeastern Conference and the Southland Conference tournaments.

The latter two had ESPN-quality presentations for every game.

I get that The American was playing its tournaments on different fields due to incoming tropical weather concerns, but they simply have to do better.

Imagine if you are recruit, being pursued by a coach in all three leagues. The American’s ridiculously bad presentation just might send a message to a recruit, don’t you think?

For sure, this would never happen in The American for other sports. Football, men’s and women’s basketball, volleyball and many others simply would not be treated like baseball was treated this week.

If I were a coach in that league, I would be asking my athletic director and the league office, why was this allowed to happen?

American Athletic Conference commissioner Mike Aresco likes to tout his league as being “Power 6,” that is equal to the SEC, ACC, Big Ten, Pac 12, and Big 12.

But, that look, peering through a fence, was anything but big time.

If this is the option for a feed of the game, it is best not to show anything. It was like some intern just turned on a camera and plugged in,and said, “Away we go!”

Part of being a big time college conference is giving each sport a big time presentation

In the SEC, the baseball tournament is treated just a big time college football game.

When LSU pitcher Todd Peterson smacked a two run double to the left field wall on his first college at bat on Thursday, the network gave the story the treatment it deserved.

Peterson was interviewed on field immediately after the game. It was live TV the way it was meant to be handled.

Of course, the SEC has oodles of cash that make such telecasts possible. The league simply has the resources The American does not.

However, that’s no excuse for watching a post-season baseball game on a camera peering through a fence.

The lack of effort spoke volumes about how the American feels about college baseball. The coaches need to stand up, as a group, and call it what it is.

Bush league and unacceptable.

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Ed Daniels

Ed Daniels

WGNO Sports Director/106.1 FM

Ed is a New Orleans native, born at Baptist Hospital. He graduated Rummel High School, class of 1975, and subsequently graduated from Loyola University. Ed started in TV in 1977 as first sports intern at WVUE Channel 8. He became Sports Director at KPLC TV Channel 7 in Lake Charles in 1980. In 1982 he was hired as sports reporter…

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