Apr 1, 2013, 12:05 PM EDT
Deciding how to handle a traumatic event on live television is one of the most difficult and sensitive decisions in all of broadcast production. There is no handbook on how to handle the immediate aftermath of a traumatic event on live television.
On Sunday, CBS did a masterful job navigating the through the aftermath of Kevin Ware’s horrific leg injury during the first half of the Midwest regional final between No. 1-seed Louisville and No. 2-seed Duke. It takes a tremendous amount of poise and judgment to handle a delicate situation like this, and ultimately, the network did the right thing.
Seth Davis touches on it in the video above, but a few things need to be reemphasized.
The network did show two immediate replays of the injury, but only for the sake of getting a grasp of what actually happened. The injury took place towards the end of a play, and occurred in the upper-third portion of the screen. Once the production crew realized the severity of the injury, no further replays were used. The production crew probably had better angles on the injury, but choosing to refrain from using them was the correct move. It is up to the production crew to serve as a filter for the public, and they properly filtered out as much as possible without jeopardizing their journalistic integrity. With the advancements in internet technology, those interested in viewing the injury are able to do so on the internet, where it is up to the user to decide whether or not they want to view the video.
The networks’ decision to stay with the action in lieu of cutting to a commercial break was also the right thing to do. While the event was traumatic and graphic in nature, CBS maintained journalistic integrity by remaining on camera while allowing the aftermath to unfold. CBS is a broadcast news company, and they stayed with the game in order for the event to play out. Clark Kellogg and Jim Nantz showed great poise and respect during the broadcast, and allowed the visuals to tell the story.
The reactions of the Louisville and Duke players is what made the immediate aftermath seem so raw, so uncut. We’ve seen horrific injuries before, but never have the reactions of the players and opponents been so real, so uncontrollable. Several Louisville players began vomiting on the bench. The faces of Chane Behanen and Russ Smith were covered in tears. The image of Rick Pitino wiping the tears off his face trying to regain composure before entering the huddle is one of the most raw and real images we have seen all season.
What took place on Sunday is one of the most gruesome and traumatic sports injuries we’ve seen in a long time. The network allowed the events to take place without compromising the integrity of the players or the game, yet controlled the image as to not disturb the viewing audience.
You can contact Troy Machir on Twitter @TroyMachir
Sep 20, 2014, 11:29 PM EDT
Three Mountain West programs and one Big Ten program among the schools on the Las Vegas native’s list.
Sep 20, 2014, 7:50 PM EDT
The elite PG from New Jersey had his first in-person meeting with Kentucky head coach John Calipari on Thursday.
Sep 20, 2014, 6:18 PM EDT
The South Charleston HS floor general was one of the state’s best players last season, and he could prep for a year before joining the WVU program.
Sep 20, 2014, 5:03 PM EDT
The son of a former national champion has made a name for himself by scoring 28 points per game as a junior.
Sep 20, 2014, 3:35 PM EDT
Mount St. Mary’s rewarded head coach Jamion Christian with an extension.
Sep 20, 2014, 2:00 PM EDT
Gonzaga has one of its deepest teams of all time and the Bulldogs are challenging themselves with a difficult non-conference schedule.
Sep 20, 2014, 12:45 PM EDT
Bradley forward Auston Barnes has been charged with misdemeanor domestic battery following an August arrest.
Sep 20, 2014, 11:30 AM EDT
Pitt and head coach Jamie Dixon no longer hold a commitment from a former 2016 recruit.
Sep 20, 2014, 10:15 AM EDT
A three-star forward has four schools that are heavily involved.
Sep 20, 2014, 9:00 AM EDT
Matt McQuaid can really light it up from the perimeter.
Sep 19, 2014, 11:50 PM EDT
Stephen Zimmerman is ranked the No. 10 overall recruit by Rivals.
Sep 19, 2014, 11:00 PM EDT
Kentucky fans camped out on Monday in order to officially camp out for tickets on Wednesday morning.
Sep 19, 2014, 9:45 PM EDT
The Rhode Island forward is eligible after missing the 2013-2014 season.
Sep 19, 2014, 9:00 PM EDT
The 6-foot-8 forward has two years of eligibility remaining.
Sep 19, 2014, 8:15 PM EDT
He was arrested on Feb. 14.
Sep 19, 2014, 7:00 PM EDT
The Yellow Jackets have added two new assistant to the coaching staff this offseason.
Sep 19, 2014, 5:25 PM EDT
The Orange holds the first of two exhibition games on Nov. 2.
Sep 19, 2014, 4:08 PM EDT
The Roselle Catholic (New Jersey) product picked the Gamecocks over Seton Hall and Rhode Island.
Sep 19, 2014, 2:46 PM EDT
Interestingly enough, UAB visits Chattanooga December 22.
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