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Point Park students at the Cleveland Cavaliers game. Photo | Josh Croup

Alumnus Fred McLeod (COMM '74) - play-by-play announcer for the Cleveland Cavaliers - invited Point Park University students to Quicken Loans Arena for a behind-the-scenes tour before the Feb. 15 game against the Indiana Pacers.

Mark Mazzagatti, group event specialist for the Cavaliers, gave 12 students in Point Park's Pittsburgh Center for Sports Media and Marketing a firsthand look at in-game entertainment production equipment, the Cavaliers' front office and private suites, as well as introduced them to staff members preparing for the game.

"It was such a cool experience to see how a control room operates for a basketball game," said Blaine King, a senior broadcast reporting major from Upper Darby High School in Philadelphia, Pa. "We've seen how a control room operates in a hockey format, so it was cool to see how they compare."

After the tour, the students met one-on-one with McLeod.

"Even though it's a lot of work, I immerse myself in the work," said McLeod. "It's fun and I never have a bad day at work. No one's going to outwork me."

Before he left, McLeod had one request for the group.

"Can you root for Cleveland just once?," asked McLeod. "Just for one night, be a Cavaliers fan."

The students cheered on the Cavaliers from the stands, taking in the video production board that they learned about during their tour.

"It was a great trip overall that taught me a lot about the sports industry," said Paul Daniels, a senior broadcast production major from St. Thomas More School in Oakdale, Conn. "It really opened my eyes to what goes on behind the scenes towards the production itself, which is what we see as fans. It was truly an amazing experience."

Last fall, McLeod returned to his alma mater to talk about his career in the University's Center for Media Innovation.

"It was an awesome opportunity to see and hear Fred again, but this time in his own environment," said Kelsey Veydt, M.A./M.B.A. student and the center's graduate assistant. "Being able to learn from an alumnus working in the business is such a unique experience that we are all so thankful for."

Article and photo by Josh Croup, junior broadcast reporting major


More About: School of Communication, sports, arts and entertainment management, alumni, Center for Media Innovation, Center for Sports Media and Marketing, broadcast reporting