Once a week, SEC Digital Media Director Eric SanInocencio will share insights on the inner-workings of the conference office.
Birmingham, Ala. -- People ask me all the time, "What exactly is it that you do"? Often times I have to pause, think for a few seconds, and blurt out my usual answer of "It is kind of hard to explain".
Editing and managing www.secsports.com
entails lots of moving parts, and forces you to learn the skill of multi-tasking rather quickly. One minute you are posting a Player of the Week story, the next you are answering a question on twitter from a passionate fan. That and many other avenues of sports information fall under the umbrella of "all in day's work" here at the office.
As I mentioned in the previous blog, football season is always a different animal. Saturday goes from a normal day of rest to a 24-hour span filled with intensity and excitement.
So, you want to know exactly what I do? Well, here's a diary of last Saturday's full slate of SEC action. (All Times Central)
- Turn on my laptop and punch the clock (not literally, just sounds fun to say). Saturdays don't require us (the SECSports.com web team) to be at the office, so I setup my weekend cubicle right in the middle of the living room. By this time, I know the schedule of the day's football games, so I review the list, and get ready for what is usually a 12-hour day.
- The first football game kicks off. Sometimes it can be more than one, but for this week Ryan Mallett and Arkansas are taking the field to battle against Mark Richt's Georgia Bulldogs. We are officially underway.
- This is a good time to head over to SEC Gameday Central
, to make sure the live stats feeds are working, and check that the default video (the one in the player at the top of the page) has an exciting preview or highlight to get the day going. Vanderbilt and Ole Miss just got started too, so the split-screen feature on my TV gets some good use.
- You didn't think this was going to all be about football, did you? Saturdays are prime for Cross Country races, and since they tend to start pretty early (9 or 10 am), we start to get a steady flow of recaps from all the action at this time. I take a few seconds creating a story to house all of the reports, and just like that the "Saturday Recaps" post on the website is born. Stories will continue to trickle during the duration of the day, so I will continue to keep an eye on my email inbox for the latest news.
- Vanderbilt head coach Robbie Caldwell just picked up his first win as Commodore coach
, defeating Ole Miss 28-14 in the first final. Once the final seconds click off, I head over to one of the many open tabs on my computer. The one I click now is for text alerts (which you can sign up for here
) to get the word out to our fanbase that a game has finished. I shoot out a quick message, then run back to my TV to catch the end of the Arkansas-Georgia game.
- Just when it looked like we were headed to overtime in Athens, Ryan Mallett leads the Hogs to a win on the final drive. Again, I send out a text alert, and keep an eye on photos and stories from both early games. We use the Associated Press to get our content, so when they have something, so does www.secsports.com.
- The CBS matchup between Florida and Tennessee is moments away. We have our first story of the day posted as well, with the recap of the Razorbacks win over Georgia live on the site
. This is where our strong social media presence comes in, and we can get the word out of an SEC game's result to over 100,000 people in a matter of seconds. I post a link to the story on the SEC's official Facebook page
, and then send out a tweet of the result to our many followers
- After a small "lunch" break, the work continues. Vanderbilt's key victory story just went up, and we are starting to get the first batch of highlight videos sent to us. XOS Digital is the SEC's production company and host of the website, and I coordinate with them on delivery of video to the various pages that host highlights. That makes it sound like I am somehow vital to process, which is completely not true. The XOS staff does a great job of cutting the highlights and adding commentary for use on the site. Once the highlight is "tagged" on the site, we post a "highlights" link to the story we already feature, and add the video for fans to view at Gameday Central. So, in the span of one hour after a game, you can watch the highlights on your computer at home. Not too bad huh?
- This particular week's schedule of football games left a lull time in the middle, so at this point we are just watching and maintaining the look of the website. Each story we add to the site gets pushed to the Facebook and Twitter sites. By now, the two early games have highlight packages complete and posted, and we sit tight and watch some SEC football in the meantime. Tough life huh?
- Now the fun really starts. Florida has defeated Tennessee, and we have the final wave of four football games minutes from beginning. Cross country is wrapped up at this point, and a quick text alert later to notify of the Gator win and we are ready for the home stretch. Call this the halfway point.
- Florida's story is now public fodder on the website
, and we have a highlight to go with it. Most 7 pm games are at halftime, so at this point I'm am trying to line up my schedule for the rest of the night. What went from a one-by-one posting system will now become a massive race to see who finishes these late games first. Stay tuned.
- Its common to answer a few SEC related Twitter and Facebook questions asked of us around now (@SECSportsUpdate and @SEC_Chuck are your best bets for football info). Everyone wants instant analysis. It can be amazing to see the passion SEC fans have for their teams and the league as a whole. This becomes evident where even hardcore Alabama fans (really, read the Facebook messages) are rooting for Auburn to defeat Clemson. The passion is strong, but the unity is unmatched. SEC fans root for the SEC to win above all else. Great stuff.
- We just hit the 10-hour mark of our workday, and for the first time all day you can feel a bit overwhelmed. Four games are either close to ending or have heard the final whistle, so all the above mentioned tasks get condensed. Text alerts first, stories next, then Facebook and Twitter. At this point, video should be all that's left. With four games happening at once, production is overworked too. Have to battle through and finish the day strong.
- Well, that is officially a wrap for the workday. Every game highlight is posted both on the game story and football section of the site, and on Gameday Central
Gameday Central was added to the new relaunch to give SEC fans one place for all of their football info, and even though I'm biased (I admit it) I can't be happier with how it turned out. Think about it, there were some football games that perhaps weren't available for you to see on TV today. Well, from this one page
, not only do you know the final score and can read the story, but the highlight is one click away. Again, that's pretty cool.
I close the laptop, head to my room and try to get some sleep. I'll need it, because I have to work on Sunday too.
So, who's ready to sign up and work for SECSports.com?