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Schutt Vision helmet cam gives coaches, fans all they want

Article Source - First Down Line Part 2

Editor’s note: This story is the second in a three-part series regarding Sports Video Innovations (SVI) and Schutt Vision, the new high-tech helmet camera being used by major college football programs across the country, the Arena Football League and more.

SVI CEO and co-founder JR Liverman spent an hour-long hangout (Google+) with FirstDown|Line sharing insight, background and perspective on his piece of sports technology taking football by storm.

By Brett A. Sommers
FirstDown|Line

The Schutt Vision helmet camera is providing coaches and fans alike a completely new football experience — the opportunity to see the live-action view point of the athlete.

The different possibilities and uses continue to grow for Schutt Vision, even more so than Sports Video Innovations CEO and co-founder and the inventor of Schutt Vision JR Liverman ever dreamed possible.

“There are so many things we found out it is capable of doing that we didn’t necessarily realize in the beginning that we have learned as we have gone on this journey, such as the social media aspect — the value of the content to universities, coaches and teams,” Liverman said.

Before the camera could begin to provide the new insights being captured now by NCAA, AFL and NFL football teams across the country, it had to go through it’s own series of tests within the Schutt Sports labs.

Schutt Vision Inventor
SVI Founder JR Liverman and Arena Football League Commissioner Jerry B. Kurz

Beginning in August 2013, one of the most important tests Schutt Vision was put through was the lateral impact test, described by Liverman as direct contact between the camera and a rod propelled by compressed air.

Liverman described youth and high school football contact as being around seven meters per second of force during the average collision. Collegiate and some professional level hits 8-9 m/s and the rest of professional hits around nine.

In typical use, an occasional hit above 10.5 m/s can cause something to break — something as simple as a plastic piece on the helmet.

Schutt Vision was subjected to increasingly heavy blows as high as 11.2 m/s — the equivalent of hitting a brick wall at 23 mph — and never broke or quite recording.

“You don’t go in to things expecting not to find a failure point,” Liverman said. “That was quite surprising to the folks at Schutt.”

Since the camera was cleared for use and teams began to shell out $1,200-1,500 per Schutt Vision-equipped helmet, nearly everyone interested in football has been able to find benefits suited just for them.

“I think we went into (the project) always thinking the fan experience was the one that might take a while to be realized, even thought there would be some excitement, but that the coaching would kind of win without saying,” Liverman said. “I think it is more opposite now. I think although coaches embrace the technology and what it can provide them, a lot of them are just scratching the surface.”

“I think although coaches embrace the technology and what it can provide them, a lot of them are just scratching the surface.” ~ JR Liverman

For instance, among coaches, the most obvious and sought after use for Schutt Vision was to see what the quarterback sees. After all, the signal caller in today’s game is the most important position on the field.

It has since been quickly realized, QB isn’t the only position which can reap the benefits.

“We have a lot of teams just using the helmet on quarterbacks,” Liverman said. “That is great and if they are able to find value in that, that is fantastic, but then other schools are using it (on other positions).

“Slowly but surely, position coaches are saying if the quarterback coach, offensive coordinator and head coach are seeing so much value from this live footage of the quarterback, what about my linebacker, what about my safety and cornerback. We have even had some teams put it on lineman. Slowly more and more value is being placed on what it can do from a coaching standpoint in live full-speed action.”

That is exactly what the University of Miami Hurricanes did this spring with linebacker Denzel Perryman.

In the university’s spring game, Perryman donned the Schutt Vision helmet and provided some fantastic video for his coaches and fans alike.

“The University of Miami, who has probably done as good a job as any institution out there where they have really taken the video and put it out there to their fans,” Liverman said.

“The Denzel Perryman video was a huge internet success for them and obviously for exposure for us when he wore it in the spring game. You hear the same thing from the Arena League Football fans and the broadcasters. It’s just got a lot of different uses because of the type of content it is able to capture.

“No one has ever been able to in live contact be able to capture what it is a football player sees on the field in a game or practice. That is content that is extremely valuable and wanted by the fans.”

“No one has ever been able to in live contact be able to capture what it is a football player sees on the field in a game or practice. That is content that is extremely valuable and wanted by the fans.” ~ JR Liverman

Check back next week for Part 3 of this series about Schutt Vision.

http://www.firstdownline.com/514/#.U8A8FFa7xuY

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