We're past the midway point in the high school football regular season, which means I'm overdue to share all the stories I've done so far for Football Friday on WRAL. To watch a playlist of all them, simply click here.
Week 1 is always where you want to get out of the gate strong. Thankfully, I had some help. 1) My first game at Nash Central was a blowout, which always makes the day easier. 2) My second game included a few deep passes right to me.
Oh, and I should mention a few of us have a bit of a running bet on how many WWE references we can work in. I get that out of the way early.
A beach vacation and then bad weather kept me off the field for the next two weeks, and I certainly showed my rust on a deep TD pass in my first game between Wake Forest and Leesville Road. Normally, I edit around it to make myself not look stupid. But at this point, it's more fun to make the mistake something more fun a viewer will remember.
In my second game, I realized how long I've been out of the Triangle sports loop because I had no idea Torry Holt and Willie Parker were assistant coaches for Dewayne Washington at Heritage High now.
Make sure you watch this catch at the end of the highlights, too.
The next week was a little tricky because we thought both my games were 7pm kickoffs, but it turned out my first game at Southern Durham started closer to 7:30. That meant I could only stay so long in order to get to my second game at Durham Riverside in time to get enough meaningful highlights there.
Fortunately, the Orange High running back in that second game recognized me and knew to run right at the camera after scoring his last touchdown, which made the atmosphere seem more exciting than it actually was.
Again, my rule of thumb is at the very least, make what you're doing memorable to the viewer. We've all seen thousands of highlights of guys scoring touchdowns. While that's all good and it makes the night easier, sometimes it's the lack of highlights that make me have to get more creative. Or in the case of my first game at Durham Jordan, much more sarcastic. But hey, my lack of good highlights was memorable, wasn't it?
Remember how I said blowouts make the night easier?
It will never get any easier than last Friday. First, I had the "Football Friday Showdown", which is basically our game of the week. Clearly, it was a weaker slate of games because the game of the week between old rivals Wallace-Rose Hill and Midway was a shellacking. I could have left after the first quarter and had all the highlights I needed if I wanted to, but then I would have been sitting at the station with my story all edited while still waiting for a final score for 30 minutes. So I stayed for the first half, edited my story and was in home in Holly Springs by 10:45pm.
Jason Jennings is a freelance videographer based in Raleigh, NC. He previously spent more than a decade covering sports for television stations in Florida, North Carolina, Texas and Missouri.