With the Super Bowl now less than three weeks away (since we’re the Super Bowl station it’s our obligation to remind you as often as humanly possible) those of us covering the event are anxiously, and yes, excitedly wondering what our assignments will be.
Yes we work in the media. And yes that affords us access to newsmaking events, people, and places that often make friends and family envious.
However, major events–covered by worldwide media– are sometimes a different animal.
When I covered the Olympics for Channel 13 (both in Salt Lake city and Torino, Italy) the question most often asked of me: “Did you get to see the events?” Or rather , “It must have been great to see the events in person!”.
I saw no events in Salt Lake city–except on the television in my modest hotel room. I did catch an ice skating event in Torino–but only because I bought tickets. There are so many media outlets covering the events; and not everyone can get equal access. Besides, we’re too busy working to really “enjoy” what we’re covering ( the way a spectator would enjoy it).
I assumed the Super Bowl would be a similar case. Afterall, there are more than 5000 credentials approved by the NFL–90 of those go to WTHR staff.
Based on newsroom intel, however, I”m finding our access will indeed be pretty impressive.
Reporter Rich Van Wyk, (who covered Super Bowl XLV in Dallas as well as the Colts appearance in Miami) , offered that access to the stadium–will be limited even to media covering the event. The NFL controls the access during this time. Reporters will receive 2 credentials–1 for the week leading up to the game; 1 for game day itself (although not necessarily for the stadium). (see below)
Most credentials will offer access to the NFL Experience, training facilities, players, and media center.
As for the Super Bowl parties–those –he says–are “hit or miss”. Rich says if it’s an NFL-sanctioned party then the credentials will get you in. Private parties–may or may not allow access; and it would likely be limited at best.
That being said, as the NBC “Super Bowl station”–we will have access to coverage no other station will.
The “Jimmy Fallon Show”, which is broadcasting four shows from the Hilbert Circle Theater, is granting WTHR “behind the scenes” access . We’ll see rehearsals for the show, and speak with Jimmy and his guests.
Bob Kostas —the Today Show–and Brian Williams–are all bringing their shows to Indy. As part of the NBC family, we expect to get some time with them.
I know plenty more opportunities will surface.
We’ll find out soon enough what our individual assignments will be.
As a station, I”m happy to know, even for the biggest sporting event in this city’s history, we’ll have the kind of access that will not only ensure we enjoy every moment–but more importantly, you do too.