Gameday Crew Finishes Preparations
COLUMBIA - ESPN Gameday workers started building the show's set around 11:30 Thursday morning. Crew workers say it takes around eight hours to set up the show. Many students showed up to the Franics Quadrangle to see the set being built.
Freshman Clayton Atchison said, "It's way more intense. I thought it was maybe just gonna be a couple of tables and broadcasters, but they're setting up two days in advance. There's tons of people working on it so it looks like a pretty big thing."
There are two main stages that make up the Gameday set. The first stage is where the anchors will sit to do the show. Constructed next to main stage is a stage with artificial turf on it so the crew can do demonstrations. All the set pieces were hauled into Columbia Wednesday night. It took eight trucks to bring all the pieces.
Freshman Justin Thompson was surprised by the number of workers. He said, "It's crazy here, there's a lot of people, and a lot of things going on. It's just a really crazy weekend here."
Justin's attitude towards Gameday being on campus reflects the attitude of much of the rest of campus. Almost every student walking by the set stopped to stare or take a picture.
It only takes four or five hours to build the stages. The rest of the time is spent putting up guard rails, cameras, tents, and the production truck. Almost 60 people are needed to complete the set.
Atchison was astonished, "I never thought it would take this many people to create a little show like that. But now I see how much preparation it takes and I have a lot more understanding."
Recordings for the show begin at 9:20 Friday morning. The actual Gameday show runs from 8:00-11:00 Saturday morning with the 9:00-11:00 portion running on ESPN.