Cougars caught on camera
Mount Royal games will now be broadcast on the web
Campus sports fans wishing to get some Cougar action at home — whether it be in their favourite armchair or bed — need look no further than their computer screens as Cougars athletics is now broadcast online.
Mount Royal and Cougars’ Athletics announced a partnership with Stretch Internet in mid-September. Stretch provides service to more than 50 NCAA Division-I schools in the United States including Yale and Florida State.
The company will now add Cougars men’s and women’s basketball, hockey, soccer and volleyball to its repertoire.
“It’s going to provide a great opportunity for our friends and partners to be able to tune into our live game action,” said Kyle Henry, Cougars’ sports information co-ordinator. “We have a lot of players who are not from Calgary so it will give their friends and family the chance to tune in as well as expand our brand across the country.”
With MRU announcing this past year that Cougar Athletics will be jumping into the Canada West next fall, live streaming increases Cougars’ exposure to fans who potentially couldn’t make games.
Henry said Canada West signed a three-year deal with Stretch Internet, and by joining now, they’ll have some experience with the software before the big jump.
“It’s going to be the central hub for Canada West games for the next couple of years,” he said. “We thought it would be a great opportunity to join it before we move to Canada West and allow us to work with the software we will be using and work out a couple of kinks before we make the move.”
Stretch Internet has the ability to broadcast to any device running an Apple operating system, which includes the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. Additionally, Stretch Internet operates on Flash 10.1, an application found on most Android-powered mobile devices.
It means Cougars fans can now watch their teams compete from anywhere, without sacrificing the quality of the live stream.
“It’s such a digital age, so being able to provide people with game action in many different mediums is a great thing,” he said. “Obviously, we would still want people to come to the games since it’s impossible to replicate the experience of being in the stands.
“If you can’t make it, we will try to bring that experience to you.”
In addition to the online streamings, Stretch also includes a live scoreboard and statistics. All broadcasts will be archived and available on demand after the live broadcast and select games will feature live blog and chat capabilities.
The webcasts are some of the many changes Cougars’ Athletics will make as they attempt to elevate their profile as a bonafide athletics program worthy of a spot in the CWUAA.