Several students were called back to campus early this year. In July, producers from the CBS television network contacted Rutgers University Marching Scarlet Knights director and Mason Gross School of the Arts faculty member Timothy Smith to see if some student musicians would be available to film a short spot for the opening of the weekly CBS Sports College Football Saturday program.
After a successful Super Bowl TV spot with Jay-Z and the Rutgers Symphony Orchestra in 2010, CBS knew they had a pool of reliable student performers close to New York City. The film crew got to work on a sunny July Friday, filming at the newly christened High Point Solutions Stadium on the Busch Campus in Piscataway. Students acted as tailgaters from Alabama, Florida and Boise State and donned Rutgers, Georgia, Texas Christian and Arkansas band uniforms, rushing out of the tunnel onto the football field.
Senior Music Education major TJ Brungard was one of the participants.
“It's really cool how many performances we get outside of football games, such as this shoot, the Heisman Trophy Awards Dinner, the Giants games and the Knicks game, just to name a few things,” he says. “I know that many of these things are once-in-a-lifetime opportunities.”
Cars were decked out in a variety of team colors, and there were actual hamburgers and hot dogs steaming on the grill. More than a dozen people on the CBS film crew hurried to set up each shot as the sun came out from behind passing clouds. These eight hours of filming will yield just a few brief minutes of video that will be seen each week across the nation in promos, teasers and the show opening.
“It is so fun for the kids in the band," says Smith, the band director. "And then it turns into something bigger for the university community.”
View an album of the CBS Sports-RU shoot on our Facebook page. Click on "photos" and look for the album titled "Marching band gets its close-up on CBS!"