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Oct. 28, 2006

A look at the people behind the scenes who are pertinent to Virginia football’s success

by Cathy Bongiovi
Assistant Director, UVa Athletics Media Relations

Title: Director of Football Video Operations
Years at UVa: Fifth Season
Education: Syracuse (B.A. in television, radio & film production `94)
Family: wife Lisa, daughters Gracyn (6) and Reeve (10 months), son Nathan (3 1/2)

Responsibilities: We film all the practices and games for the coaching staff. We help with the breakdown of the games and preparation of opponent film. We also put together motivational tapes for the team.

Why do you film practice: So the coaches can evaluate what we’re doing on the field, and prepare each week for the upcoming opponent.

Favorite part of the job: The comradery and the goal of trying to get a win each Saturday and contributing to that win.

Least favorite part of the job: The least favorite part is being apart from my family.

What did you do prior to coming to UVa: I’ve been involved with video for teams for 12 seasons. I’ve worked for Southern Cal, the XFL, the Jacksonville Jaguars, and ESPN.

How has your job changed through the years: It’s changed from a world of tape-based video to everything being digital and instantaneous for the coaching staff to study.

Favorite UVa highlight: Probably the comeback in 2002 when we were down 21-0 to Carolina and came back to win, and seeing Heath and Brick get drafted in the first round to the NFL.

Favorite gameday tradition: Just getting to the game early, getting up to my spot (atop the pressbox), and listening to the national anthem and singing along.

You’re named the head coach for one season. What’s the first thing you’d do: I’d run a gadget (trick) play in every game.

What’s one thing you’d like to do with the team: Win a national championship.

Favorite play: A huge hit on punt coverage when it’s us doing the hitting.

What’s the best part of working with Al Groh and the team: The comradery and seeing the players. They’re youthful, and it keeps you in a youthful spirit. To see the excitement and to see these kids grow from the first year they’re here to the fourth or fifth year. This is the first place I’ve been where I’ve actually seen a group of kids graduate, because I moved around a lot.

Favorite pro team: The New York Yankees. That’s why my license plate says 5NYYanks.

Did you grow up in New York: Yes, upstate New York.

Describe your ideal day: Getting up with my kids in the morning and going out to breakfast with them. Just spending the day with my kids and wife. I may come to the office and let them run around on the practice field. They really enjoy that.

Hobbies: Golf. Anyone who needs a fourth, I’d be more than willing to play.

Are you any good: I’m a decent golfer.

Anything you’d like to accomplish before you die: I want to see my kids graduate from college and meet my great-grandchildren.

Looking for help: The video staff is always looking for student help. We rely on our students for everything we do. We have eight students. There are scholarship positions as well as hourly positions. We’re always looking for students to become a part of this job, because we couldn’t give the coaches or the team what they need without the students’ help. We’re very flexible, but it’s usually a two to three-days a week commitment of 2 to 3 hours/day. No experience necessary. We’ll train you! Contact Luke at LGoldstein

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