September 19, 2015
ESPN's "SportsCenter on the Road" will visit Saint John's University's Clemens Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 26, for a live show airing from 6-8 a.m. CDT, in advance of the Johnnies' 1 p.m. game against St. Thomas.
Anchors Matt Barrie and Sara Walsh will host the telecast, which will include highlights and analysis of Friday night's sports and a look ahead to the weekend's key matchups. The show will also have interviews and segments regarding Saint John's, its football program and student-athletes.
The event is free and open to the public Saturday morning, rain or shine. One-way bus service will begin operating at 5 a.m. from CSB Gorecki taking fans to SJU. The inter-campus Link will start at 8 am.
The Clemens Stadium gates will open at 5 a.m.
Following completion of the broadcast, the stadium will be emptied. The stadium's ticket booths will open at 8 a.m. and the gates will reopen at their normal starting time of 10 a.m. for the football game.
There are two other chances to interact with the ESPN crew and staff.
The ESPN bus will arrive on campus at approximately 3 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 24. Fans are encouraged to provide a welcoming presence to the crew at the four-way stop sign near Warner Palaestra. Tweets will be sent to announce the exact arrival time.
Then, on Friday, Sept. 25, ESPN will produce a live segment from Clemens Stadium during the 5 p.m. "SportsCenter." The live segment is expected to air at approximately 5:30 p.m.
That all leads up to the "SportsCenter on the Road" broadcast at 6 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 26.
"To host ESPN's SportsCenter on the Road is an incredible opportunity for all of Saint John's to become better known on the national stage," SJU president Michael Hemesath said. "We look forward to showing our guests from ESPN the finest in Benedictine hospitality and their viewers across the country to the finest in NCAA Division III athletics."
Fans are encouraged to wear CSB/SJU attire to the broadcast. The Clemens Stadium concession stands, as well as the SJU Bookstore stadium shop, will be open throughout the broadcast. All on-campus parking lots will be open to the public. Once the inner campus lots are full, access will be limited and vehicles will be directed to outer campus parking lots. Guests/fans will then be shuttled to the inner campus (similar to home football games).
"Our football program is excited to have ESPN's SportsCenter on the Road on our campus next Saturday," SJU head football coach Gary Fasching said. "We are proud of our university, our campus and the great tradition of our football program. This event will give the country a chance to see what is so special about Saint John's."
ESPN is expected to arrive in Collegeville Thursday night, Sept. 24, and construct its set throughout the day Friday, Sept. 25. The SportsCenter on the Road bus is a mobile production facility that carries the equipment needed for doing a SportsCenter broadcast at a remote location. It also contains production facilities for an on-site producer, director and sound engineer, and equipment for feeding signals to ESPN headquarters in Bristol, Connecticut, via satellite.
The Collegeville appearance is part of the SportsCenter on the Road series, which takes the program out of the studio to events and fans. The show visited Notre Dame (Sept. 5) and Michigan (Sept. 12) earlier this season, and will broadcast from Boston College (Sept. 18) and Ralph Wilson Stadium (Sunday) prior to the NFL game between the Buffalo Bills and New England Patriots. It has also originated in the last year from the NBA Finals, NFL Draft, Super Bowl and the College Football Playoff.
SportsCenter debuted on ESPN's launch day (Sept. 7, 1979), and is the network's first and flagship show. Viewership averages up to 115 million viewers a month.