On November 3, new information about winter sports was released to the public. Spectators are not allowed at high school indoor sports games. Luckily, Harwood Union High School is planning to stream hockey and basketball games online. LiveBarn and NFHS (National Federation of State High School Associations) Network are the two streaming platforms Harwood will be using.
Why two streaming networks? LiveBarn cameras were installed last year in the hockey rink, so it made sense to use them, according to Harwood athletics director Chris Langevin. “We went with NFHS Network because they were running a special offer for schools during COVID, and they also stream the championship games,” said Langevin. NFHS will be used for basketball games. There will be a camera installed in the main gym, high on a wall. The camera automatically follows “the action,” as Langevin put it, so a camera person won’t be needed.
Although people will be able to stream these games, it won’t be free. NFHS and LiveBarn require a subscription fee to watch their streams. NFHS charges $69.99 for a year, or a monthly subscription of $10.99. NFHS Networks’ yearly subscription proceeds go to the High School Support Program, giving schools and athletic programs the “financial boost they need right now,” according to their website. LiveBarn also has a fee. They have different subscription plans, ranging from $27.95 to $14.95 a month. Remember, LiveBarn will be exclusively streaming hockey games and NFHS will be exclusively streaming basketball.
These fees could add up for families with kids in basketball and hockey. A reporter asked Langevin if he had any concerns about the cost of these streaming networks. “There is always that concern, and my hope is that we can have local companies like MRVTV and WDEV still come to some games and provide the action to our communities as they are able,” said Langevin.
MRVTV streamed the Harwood soccer games this fall; however, as of now they will not be streaming Harwood’s winter sports games with regularity.
These new cameras and streaming platforms will only stream Harwood home games. However, other schools may also be using streaming platforms. Langevin said that he plans to send out streaming information for each game on their social media: Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.