Technology Makes It Easy for Fans to Follow the Knights

By Brian Bennett

Mobile applications and communications technology has made it even easier to Knights’ fans to stay current with their favorite Geneseo athletic teams. Followers are never more than their computer, smart phone or tablet away from instant access to the most up-to-date information.

Whether it’s schedule details, game results, news about your son or daughter, or the chance to watch the Knights in action when you can’t make it to the game, bookmarking geneseoknights.com and getting familiar with its many features is perhaps the first step.

The Department of Intercollegiate Athletics and Recreation has worked with Presto Sports to utilize its proprietary technology platform to develop our customized Geneseo Knights’ website. Various additional capabilities have been considered and chosen to provide our fans with even more options to stay connected.

So let’s take a quick look at some of the features of geneseoknights.com. The site’s homepage provides quick access to a variety of information. Along with a rotating story bar that features frequently-updated (if not daily) news, results and highlights, visitors can also find out the most recent Athletes of the Week, as well as a quick glance at upcoming games and the most recent results.

Each of Geneseo’s 20 athletic teams has a section on the website, accessed by a simple pull-down menu across the top of the page. Here you’ll find specific news about that particular team, along with rosters, game recaps, schedule information, statistics, online records and archives, along with links to other relevant sites of interest. One of the many valuable features of the website is the instant integration of statistics and results. Soon after game results are complete and uploaded to the website, team and individual player statistics are recalculated and updated across multiple pages. If you’re a “numbers geek,” you’ll find the most up-to-date figures on the Knights via the website.

That integration feature also allows for scheduling information to be changed throughout the website, so all our schedule and calendar pages will be immediately updated when game changes are made or playoff contests added.

If you’re interested in even broader access to team schedules, if you’re a user of online or mobile calendar apps try the “Add to Calendar” button at the top-right corner of each team schedule page. Developed by a third-party vendor, the feature allows you the option to have the team schedules you select to be downloaded directly into your personal on-line calendar across six different platforms—Google, iCal, Exchange, Outlook, Yahoo and Facebook. So if and when any changes or updates are made to each respective schedule, that information will automatically be shared with your calendar.

Geneseoknights.com also offers a composite schedule of all sporting events, again updated as soon as changes are made. From the “Inside Athletics” pull-down menu on the main page, visitors can access and bookmark the schedule.

A variety of other links are available on the website homepage, including access to such items as recreation programs, facility hours (such as for the Workout Center), student-athlete resources and the Geneseo Sports Hall of Fame. Another link takes you to Geneseo’s Athletic Photo Store, where action photos taken by the college’s award-winning photographer Keith Walters ’11 are available for purchase.

The main website is not the only manner in which to receive content electronically. An add-on feature purchased by the department is Presto’s “Front Row” mobile app. A free download through Apple Apps or Google play, the app brings all the capabilities—and more—of the main Geneseo website, all specifically formatted to be easily viewed on your phone or tablet. Results, schedules, photos, live stats and live video are among the items that can be accessed through the Geneseo Knights’ Front Row app, delivered at the same time as it appears on the main website.

Front Row users can also customize their settings to have notifications sent directly to their mobile device about as many Geneseo sports as they desire. Choose your favorite team(s) and receive notice about game starts, updates and results as they happen. Find out more about the Geneseo Front Row app here.

The Knights also have a presence on all the major social media channels, including Twitter (@geneseoknights), Facebook (geneseoknights) and Instagram (geneseoknights), with Twitter being the major outlet for immediate updates, such as game starts, score changes and final results.

During the vast majority of home and road contests, some form of live stats are available that allow fans to follow along with the action. But more and more, colleges, including Geneseo, are looking to enhance their offering of live video and improvements in live streaming capabilities have made this more viable.

The opening of College Stadium this year made it possible for live video of games for men’s and women’s soccer, field hockey and men’s and women’s lacrosse to be made available. This is in addition to previous coverage of women’s volleyball, men’s and women’s basketball, men’s and women’s swimming and men’s ice hockey.

With the new venue in mind, the athletic department wanted to improve its live video offerings and updated its equipment as well as its steaming platform. Through a contract with BoxCast, video can be synched with audio broadcasts, when available, and if you’ve watched online this season, an up-to-date score bug graphic is included. The standard definition broadcast is free and can be accessed through links on geneseoknights.com or the Front Row app, but viewers are given the option to purchase a high definition video feed. If you do purchase that option, a percentage of the fee does come back to support the Geneseo Athletics Department.

If you took advantage of the live video feeds of the two hockey NCAA Tournament games, you were able to watch in high definition free of charge. Because regulations do not allow for host schools to charge for an NCAA broadcast, the athletic department paid for both games’ video stream to be broadcast in high definition for free.

Live video streaming is a feature supported by many of our opposing schools and if a Geneseo road contest is being live streamed, you’ll find a link to that broadcast on both geneseoknights.com and the Front Row app. If you have means to connect the video stream to your television, you can enjoy a high-quality presentation. (One of our Ice Knight fans tweeted a photo of the NCAA Tournament game they were enjoying on their hi-definition, large-screen television during one of the contests we hosted and video streamed.)

The expansion of our live video capabilities have also allowed for the creation of additional content, such as game-highlight packages, which we began offering this year. Stop by the main website a day or two after a game to view some of the best plays from the contest.

While not as high tech as what’s been mentioned, your membership in the Roundtable Athletic Association (RAA) comes with some bonuses. This article is part of an e-newsletter that goes out monthly with articles and context exclusive to RAA members. If you’ve missed a few, or want to re-read an article, you can find past stories here, along with other pieces about Geneseo athletics from various media.

If you like coming to the games, a Roundtable membership level provides the donor with a Geneseo All-Sports Pass. In past seasons, this allowed pass holders to get in free of charge to all men’s and women’s basketball, men’s and women’s swimming and men’s ice hockey events. This year, with the stadium open, the All-Sports Pass now covers contests held in that facility (men’s and women’s soccer, field hockey, men’s and women’s lacrosse).

In addition, Roundtable All-Sports Pass members are welcome in the RAA reception rooms on game days/nights. Along with the RAA room in the lobby of Merritt Fieldhouse, two new rooms were added this season. There’s now a RAA room located opposite Schrader Gymnasium as well as a RAA room at the south end of the College Stadium pressbox. Look for the RAA sign and stop in for something to eat or drink and socialize with other Knights’ fans.

Considering the multitude of games covered by the All-Sports Pass, if you’re in frequent attendance at Knights’ sporting events, your pass will more than pay for itself. In addition, the department has in past years, honored RAA passes for home SUNYAC and NCAA events, picking up the extra ticket cost so that our most loyal fans can be in attendance at post-season events.

The department is always looking at ways to expand our content and the variety of ways to deliver it and we always welcome input from all those connected with Geneseo Knights’ athletics. Remember, if you can’t make it out to the game, there are may ways to follow along and know the results as they happen.

Brian Bennett is director of design and publications and is a member of the Athletic Communication staff.