Ross xPression Supercharges Graphics Automation for University of Wyoming Athletics

Ross Xpression
University of Wyoming Athletics uses Ross Video xPression to produce more than 70 games a year. (Image credit: University of Wyoming)

LARAMIE, Wyo.—In a country where college sports sometimes feel like the pro leagues, our athletics teams perform at levels that always astound me. Their talent, dedication and overall engagement are in line with our university’s commitment to developing and supporting an environment that promotes growth as well as academic and athletic excellence. Our mission is also to provide an outstanding fan experience; one that encourages and engages our community. 

As a member of the Mountain West Conference, University of Wyoming is proud to be part of an institution with many achievements. One that is particularly notable is that the MW was one of the first to establish a sports television network dedicated to the intercollegiate athletic conference.  At Wyoming University, I work with a full-time staff as well as a team of freelancers, some of which are our own students. Together we manage all the video needs of our athletic department whether it be live broadcasting, video board shows, streaming or social media. 

70+ Games a Year
In fact, we broadcast more than 70 live games annually on the Mountain West Network. We also work closely with AT&T Sports Networks to air our games to 10 states and broadcast to international audiences. Some games are streamed OTT-style to platforms including YouTube.

In an effort to really enhance our productions and improve fan experience, we recently re-evaluated our video graphics requirements and decided to move to a platform that provided us with more functionality and ease of use. Based upon my prior experience with the technology, we decided on the Ross Video xPression real-time motion graphics generator. I have worked with other character and graphics generators over the years, all of which offered efficient technology and did a respectable job, yet xPression was a far more viable solution for us. 

Ross xPression has really changed the way we broadcast to—and engage with—our audience, giving us far more flexibility in the way we present graphics, athlete stats, athlete bios and headshots, score bugs and much more on the screen.

Real-Time Stats
For example, our video team can quickly tap into the XML stats file that is often created courtside. This allows our operators to pull stats in real-time, placing on-screen graphics that provide our audience with much more information about the players, the game, etc. 

Certainly, we could do this all before with our previous graphics platform, but it was a far more manual process. Everything is automated now, saving us time and removing the chance for errors. This has also helped us move from needing a fully trained technology professional to having our students run the graphics platform.

Built into our master control room, the workflow is connected to our switcher and network video interfaces and sources, with touchscreen and Ross Dashboard control. The operator and director work together to pre-plan certain custom and pre-recorded broadcast segments including graphics for pre-show athlete bios, halftime athlete profiles or end of season scenarios. 

During the live game, the graphics we push to the screen really depend on how the game is going, and this is where automation has really helped. We set operators up with prebuilt custom pages and with a few button pushes, graphics can be loaded on the fly whether it’s athlete standings, starting line-ups or stats. Something this powerful really shouldn’t be so easy to use. 

We always have some students who want to “get under the hood” of the technology. I really enjoy this aspect of my work as it provides me with a teaching role that I know will help the students when they graduate and choose to pursue a tech career. Providing students with this experience not only keeps our students engaged, it also offers on-the-job applied skills, which will help advance their career. l 

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Dennis Trapani joined Wyoming Athletics in July 2013 as Director of Video and Digital Media, and was promoted to his current role as Associate Director of Athletics in 2021.  Trapani oversees the day-to-day operations of the WYO-Vision team and leads all video and production initiatives for the university’s 17 Cowboy and Cowgirl teams.  He serves as the lead producer/director for all videoboard shows and streaming/linear broadcasts of Wyoming Football, Men’s Basketball and Women’s Basketball games.