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  • Angie Sessa

Behind the Scenes of the Big Red Hockey Cast

The Big Red Sports Network (BRSN) is currently producing their 2nd season of the Big Red Hockey Cast (BRHC), a recorded podcast featuring game recaps, exclusive interviews, and game analyses. Every Thursday, a new episode is released, and a different player is introduced to the podcast. For this season, BRHC is exclusively covering the women’s team, a change from last season, which covered the men’s team.

I signed up for the podcasting department with the hopes of finding a community of hockey fans at Cornell. During my first BRSN meeting, I became familiar with the members who spoke about their favorite NHL teams, and I knew I would really enjoy watching and covering Cornell hockey with them. This department is close-knit, especially among the newer members. Many of us watch the games together, and we often discuss our courses, work, and thoughts about professional hockey games with each other. This department can get very fired up when it comes to defending our favorite teams or debating the very prevalent argument as to whether we consider Ohio a part of the Midwest (it is!). The passion from each of our members makes working with the group such an amazing experience. A favorite memory of mine with this department was the BRSN ice skating social we attended together. It was a ton of fun skating on the same rink where we watch the Big Red play each weekend. Hosting an episode can be very intimidating, though the support of the group makes it a lot of fun to be behind a microphone and in front of a camera. Almost every week our editors need to remove some of the laughter that can't be held in during recording, and of course, with each episode comes a few retakes and blooper footage - making great content for our social media pages.

From researching games and interviewees to setting up the visual and audio equipment each recording session, the creation of each episode of the podcast is a complex, meticulous process. Each week, BRSN’s podcasting department works tirelessly and efficiently to produce and release an episode. The process begins with the podcasting team getting together at Lynah Rink or tuning into ESPN+ to cheer on the team and take notes on the game. Game and player “researchers” from the podcasting department will create a shared document listing the notable plays and statistics of the game, as well as the playing history and personal characteristics of each week’s guest. From there, questions are created for our two segments. First is the “Sin Bin,” where players are asked about their experiences with the team and hockey itself. The next segment, the “Slapshot Round,” is a more fun and lighthearted part of the podcast, where the player answers as many rapid-fire questions as possible. Hosts will spend time rehearsing together over video calls prior to the recording day, taking place right before the team’s practice each Monday at Lynah rink.

The department gathers at 4:00 PM to meet our guest, and producers begin to set up the microphone and camera equipment. First, the episode hosts conduct their interview with the featured guest of the week, then the game recap and conclusion is recorded. The game recap provides an analysis of the team’s performance and result, and the conclusion sets the stage for what the next week’s opponent for the team looks like.

Production itself is a completely different task. It requires a careful process, using softwares such as Audacity for audio and Davinci Resolve for video. Separate equipment is used for both the video and audio recordings, so the camera and microphone footage must be synced. Overlays are added to give the video a red border with more details about the episode and the podcast, and a named feature to the guest we have on the episode.

After production is complete, the episodes are released to Spotify and Apple Podcasts the Thursday following the recording. The group decides on the most entertaining clips of the episode and shares them to the social media department to be posted on the BRSN Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok accounts. Finally, our guest will record a short video introducing themselves and promoting viewers to come listen to their featured episode.


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