ESPN Intern Gets Cockpit View of On-Air Control Room

Published: Jun 19, 2014
Steve Soliani ’15 is an intern with ESPN’s Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World Resort.
Steve Soliani ’15 is an intern with ESPN’s Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World Resort.

Being in the ESPN control room during a live game is nothing short of thrilling for Steve Soliani ’15. There is a wall of screens showing just about every angle of the field, producers shouting out commands of where to cut the live feed to, countdowns to the end of the commercial breaks, and Soliani, keeping statistics of the game at hand.

“It’s so hectic,” said Soliani, a sport management major with a minor in business administration. “And I love it.”

Soliani is an intern with ESPN’s Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World Resort, 230 acres of professionally run, state-of-the-art facilities that hosts many youth sports as well as the Atlanta Braves Spring Training games and the Drew Brees Passing Academy.

He attends summer classes on UT’s campus for half of the week and heads to Orlando for the second half. He has worked in a variety of aspects of the complex’s production center from camera operations to helping facilitate live broadcasts of the Orlando City Soccer Club.

“A lot goes into the hour of broadcast you watch on TV,” Soliani said. “I wanted to see the side of it that most people don’t get the chance to.”

Soliani grew up in Harwinton, CT, about a 15-minute drive from ESPN’s headquarters. His dream job would be to work in one of the company’s mobile trucks live broadcasting Monday Night Football or the X-Games, providing game statistics for the television hosts to discuss on air.

At UT, Soliani serves as the head manager of the men’s basketball team, travelling with them during the season. His passion for sports can be traced to his grandfather who used to take Soliani to Yankees games where they’d both keep score for fun.

“I love the variety and the uncertainty of sports,” he said.

Being away from family this summer and being in class or interning full time comes with its challenges, but Soliani wouldn’t have it any other way.

“I just couldn’t pass up the opportunity,” he said.

 

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