How Michigan football, Jim Harbaugh use video technology to gain ‘competitive advantage’
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Since Harbaugh’s arrival in Ann Arbor prior to the 2015 season, the program started integrating products from 8K Solutions, a technology provider that works with nearly a dozen college football teams and roughly a quarter of NFL franchises, including the Baltimore Ravens, Buffalo Bills, Philadelphia Eagles and San Francisco 49ers — the team he once coached.
8K Solutions’ MastRcam Mobile — which Michigan currently uses — essentially acts as a scissor lift replacement for graduate assistants and video coordinators, like the Wolverines’ Phil Bromley. The 55-foot high unit allows Michigan to capture footage from two separate cameras perched high atop a mobile cart, which can easily be moved around practice fields. Coaches and player can replay practice highlights in one-on-one meetings and film sessions.
While the MastRcam unit can work alone, it can also be paired with Lyvve Coach, a new technology from 8K Solutions that provides instant replays during practice and one that Michigan started implementing this year, according to 8K vice president of sales and marketing Bob White.
When reached for comment, Bromley declined to give specifics on the Lyvve Coach product, if Michigan has used it, currently using it or will use it in the future, citing the technology as a “competitive advantage,” even if it’s by the narrowest of margins.
With the product integration, each practice play is automatically created and then continuously looped on a 12 foot by seven foot rotating LED screen until the beginning of the next play. According to 8K Solutions, position coaches and video staffers can pause, rewind or review each play as they dive deeper into the analysis and breakdown footage even further. The interactive nature of Lyvve Coach allows it to accept feeds from other devices as well.
The instant feedback saves time on the practice field and allows coaches to highlight specific plays while they’re still top-of-mind with the players versus waiting until film study.