SE: K-State VB NCAA Tournament Site Matches to be Carried on ESPN3

For the first time since 2007, K-State’s volleyball team will host the first two rounds of the NCAA Tournament. For those unable to attend, viewing the Wildcats’ postseason run is still an option. K-StateHD.TV will be producing a national broadcast of the event, with all three matches at Bramlage Coliseum to be carried exclusively on ESPN3. 

K-State’s first round match against Lipscomb on Friday at 7:30 p.m., along with the battle between Ohio State and Missouri State at 5 p.m., will be available to watch on ESPN3, WatchESPN and the ESPN app. Free live audio for K-State’s matches at Bramlage Coliseum can still be found at kstatesports.com

“We are honored to once again partner with ESPN to provide production for these NCAA Tournament matches on ESPN3,” said Brian Smoller, K-State Athletics’ Director of Video Services. “It is another tribute to our outstanding K-StateHD.TV crew, largely comprised of students, our full-time K-State Athletics video staff, and wonderful partnership with the Division of Communications and JMC staff from on-campus. 

“K-Staters should be very proud of the work these individuals have put in to make K-StateHD.TV a recognized source of TV production at the highest levels.”

The broadcasts’ connections to K-State also includes the on-air talent in Mitch Fortner (play-by-play), who is the voice of the K-State soccer team, and Liz Wegner-Bush (color), the first K-State volleyball player to be named an All-American twice (2000-01). 

For K-StateHD.TV, established in 2011, producing the NCAA Tournament matches for ESPN3 is another indicator of its strong reputation within the broadcast industry. Last year, K-StateHD.TV produced 57 games for TV distribution, a number the Wildcats’ digital network expects to surpass during this school year. 

On top of ESPN3, K-StateHD.TV has produced broadcasts for FS1, Fox College Sports, Fox Sports Kansas City and Cox Communications. 

“This is our 14th year of partnership overall with K-State, and sixth since the inception of K-StateHD.TV. It’s been a great fit for FOX Sports Kansas City and other FOX platforms, providing sought-after content and production that meets the high standards we set for our networks," said FOX Sports Kansas City and FOX Sports Midwest programming director Rick Powers.

As K-StateHD.TV has evolved, so has its reach. Now, it regularly turns game productions into highlight packages, content for profile videos and GIF files for K-State’s array of social media platforms. 

What started with bringing Wildcat events to the home has expanded to smart phones and tablets, a sign of K-StateHD.TV’s ability to keep pace with technology. 

“This was about exposure and the betterment of our student-athletes,” said Andy Liebsch, K-StateHD.TV’s assistant director of video services. “Every year we do a little more. It just keeps growing and growing.”

The benefits of K-StateHD.TV do not stop at increasing exposure for student-athletes and their athletic programs, however. 

The 40-50 students who work with K-StateHD.TV also gain a vast knowledge of broadcasting, unmatched experience in the field and the ability to work with industry standard equipment. Some students are even allowed the opportunity to travel with K-State teams while all are given the chance to learn any aspect of the profession and help produce content for national broadcasts. 

“One of the original tenets of K-StateHD.TV was to create an opportunity for our students to gain professional-level experience in the world of sports media,” said Jeff Morris, Vice President for Communications and Marketing. “The chance to work within one of the nation’s top-run athletic programs and get national broadcast level-experience is a tremendous advantage for our students.”

Cody Isern, who interned with ESPN Los Angeles over the summer, and Dakota German, who worked his way from a student role into a full-time position, are just two examples of how working with K-StateHD.TV can springboard students into greater future opportunities. 

“Honestly, I feel like working with K-StateHD.TV the last three years, it’s set me up for what I want to do with my future career,” Isern said. “I feel like I’ll be prepared when I graduate. I’ll have a good background knowledge through kind of everything: collegiate athletics, video programs and technology used.”

“K-State HD.TV is really great for students that want to learn,” added German, “because if you have the passion for it and you have the drive to go out and learn new things, K-StateHD.TV can provide all of that for you.”

Volleyball Tickets on Sale for NCAA Tournament; K-State Students Free 

Affordable ticket options are available to see the Kansas State volleyball team in the NCAA Tournament held at Bramlage Coliseum beginning Friday, Dec. 2.

All-session tickets with a reserved chair back will be $15. General admission bench all-session tickets are $10 for adults and $8 for youth. K-State students can attend the matches for free with a student ID.

Parking will be free for all fans at Bramlage Coliseum and doors will open at 4 p.m., with Friday’s first match pitting Ohio State and Missouri State at 5 p.m. K-State will then square off with Lipscomb at 7:30 p.m. The winners of the two matches will face each other on Saturday, Dec. 3 at 7 p.m.

Tickets are available at the K-State ticket office inside Bramlage Coliseum, by calling 1-800-221-CATS or online at www.k-statesports.com.
 
NCAA First and Second Round ScheduleFirst Round – Friday, Dec. 2
5 p.m. – Ohio State vs. Missouri State
7:30 p.m.* – K-State vs. Lipscomb
*or 30 minutes following the conclusion of the 5 p.m. match

Second Round – Saturday, Dec. 3
7 p.m. – First Round Winners