Producing Live Sports


Sports production is an exciting and fast paced segment of live event production. There are many aspects of live event production in sports that go unnoticed by the fans. The common fan notices the field full of players, fast-paced action, timeouts, and commercial breaks. Behind the scenes of every sporting event is a team working to keep up with game developments in real time. Throw in exciting plays, fan interactions, and unexpected developments in the weather and live event production in sports becomes an extremely dynamic and chaotic environment.

Brian Clapp of interviewed Dennis Kirkpatrick, a veteran sports producer, to get the inside scoop of what a day in the life of sports production looks like. We’ve summarized the article below.


Even though you can’t account for every detail of a game day production, preparation is key in order to prevent gameday mishaps. If you are fully prepared for all known elements, during game time you can focus on any sudden changes. Coordinate with the client to build out the show. Become familiar with the venue, any in game elements and, of course, the teams. Handle as many fine details as possible before the day of the show.

Game Day

Be sure to get there early; this earns you respect from the crew and allows you time to meet with technical managers, directors and any talent you’ll be working with. Be sure to check on your crew, equipment and that all tape elements/graphics are ready to go.

The production meeting takes place a few hours prior to game time. In it, the producer runs through the gamescript for the upcoming games, discussing any specific details or unique scenarios with the appropriate department leads. From Audio Engineers and PA Announcers to Video board operators and Video Directors. All production crew is involved.

Warm up and Show Time

Review transitions between commercials, promos and other elements. Make sure your crew is in place and begin pre-production. Sync your clock with production truck and check in with the studio. Rehearse the opening and record it if possible. A production crew strives to have every conceivable variable accounted for and will often times, have these elements built out and a part of every game script, even if they are rare.

Once the game starts, following the script/spotting chart and staying in sync with the play by play announcer will make the production a success!

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