COVID-19 has changed the way the world functions for nearly the last year. Few industries have been impacted as heavily as sports.
The Salisbury men’s and women’s basketball teams were given the green light to return to play in a condensed season this year. In order to host competitions this winter, the basketball teams are playing in an empty Maggs Gymnasium.
The Sea Gull Sports Network, first launched in 2011, provides a medium for fans to watch not only the Sea Gulls men’s and women’s basketball teams, but all of the varsity sports at home events.
Will DeBoer is the Executive Producer of SGSN and the Assistant Sports Information Director. DeBoer’s main responsibilities for SGSN include overseeing and training the staff, scheduling, working on the graphics, creating highlight videos and behind the scenes operations for the livestreams.
Before coming to Salisbury this year, DeBoer worked as the radio broadcaster for the Delmarva Shorebirds for the past four years. He also covered the Division I University of Maryland-Eastern Shore Basketball teams.
DeBoer hopes he will be able to pass along his years of knowledge and experience in broadcasting to the current SGSN crew.
“I see myself as the sort of person who can help anyone who is interested in pursuing sports broadcast or broadcast production,” DeBoer said.
DeBoer stressed the importance of making the viewing experience the best possible for the viewers since that is the only way fans can watch the games for now.
DeBoer said he hopes to add to the legacy the Sea Gull Sports Network has produced.
“My goal is to continue SGSN’s reputation as the top streaming networks in not just Division III, but all of college sports,” DeBoer said. “We have a really good program here and quite a few alumni before I arrived here who are working in sports media or just media in general, they got there start working here at SGSN.”
Cyrill Parham, the current Sports Information Director at Salisbury, currently oversees SGSN. With DeBoer taking over the reins, Cyrill is hopeful that the viewers will appreciate DeBoer’s contributions towards the platform.
“[Will] has a very strong broadcasting background, so he has done a great job with making SGSN his own,” Parham said. “We’re trying to do some different things this semester and hopefully while we’re doing these new things, especially with no crowds, people will enjoy what we have to offer.”
Parham explained that the SGSN has adapted to the changes necessary to cover events this season and taken precautions to ensure their staff’s safety, including wearing masks, social distancing, and taking bi-weekly COVID-19 tests.
“We want to make sure everybody is healthy, everybody is going to be as safe as possible,” Parham said. “[We want] to make sure that nobody catches COVID-19… we’re trying to keep people as safe and as cognizant of the current environment we’re in as possible.”
Parham said it can take about five workers to run broadcasts for sports that play outside of Sea Gull Stadium, such as basketball, volleyball, soccer or baseball. In contrast, the games held in Sea Gull Stadium, like football, lacrosse and field hockey, requires 10 to 12 workers to run the broadcast.
Malcolm Gibson is a broadcaster for the SGSN and the current color commentator for the men’s and women’s basketball teams. Gibson has also covered lacrosse and softball for SGSN.
“The biggest thing that I like about it is [that] they treat us like professionals,” Gibson said. “We have a responsibility to go out there and put on a good product every time we’re out there.”
To access the SGSN wesbite, visit https://team1sports.com/suseagulls/.
By BRANDON STARK
Photo courtesy of SU Sports Information.