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Old 12-03-2009
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MR TWISTER MR TWISTER is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Chicago
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NFL video technology now available to Wrestling Programs

HUDL.COM software used by National Wrestling Champs available to all

For years, I have been trying to get film from my son of his college wrestling matches I can’t travel to.

I could hear the excitement in my son’s voice during an early November phone call. “Dad, I can give you this password and you can see all of my complete matches this season, you can stop them or slow motion them”, said Nebraska-Omaha All American Mario Morgan. “You can go into the video and make comments on what you see and send them back to me to review. At the end of the season you can edit a complete highlight tape with music.” What I found was much, much more.

Advanced video football technology has reached the wrestling coaches computers. The sport of wrestling can now benefit from it. Agile Sports Technology (www.hudl.com) computer software is now available to the wrestling community as a way of reviewing match film in your own time frame. Think of this concept as technology meets game video / study hall for athletes. Agile offers a software package that combines videos, playbooks, presentations and evaluations for players, coaches, parents and recruiters to view online. The advanced version is called Hudl.pro and the version geared towards wrestling is hudl.com.

A savvy wrestling coach can now have a website where each of his wrestlers can view their past matches from the comfort of their home. The wrestler can look at the matches and listen to his coach’s comments on the match at the same time. The coach can stop the match at any point and like John Madden on Monday Night football with his now famous Telestrator, he can draw or type on the screen to indicate high lights or changes he wants the wrestler to make. With so many of today’s athletes a part of the technologically revolution this new software can now fast forward the wrestler to another level of pre and post match preparation.

So, what is the theory behind the concept oh hudl.com? Sports coaches (especially in football) capture huge amounts of video of games and practices from many different angles. In game preparations, they break down each play, and each player, annotating the videos with the game situation, what to watch for, and other notes. Players and coaches have to study these breakdowns at the team’s practice facility, or else burn DVDs and watch them at home. It can be a clunky and tedious process.

Hudl lets players leave the video room. At the heart of Hudl is the ability to watch game footage from the comfort of one's couch. Teams capture and log their video using their standard methods; Hudl uploads seamlessly, and immediately, offers the video on its shared site. Coaches can log into their accounts and tag video with telestrations, voice, and text. They can then send those clips to players for their review or even create tests, to check just how well a player knows the playbook, his moves or realizes his in-game mistakes. Diagrams can be created using Playstation-John Madden Football like technology and then linked to video examples. Because each team and each wrestler has their own page and is password protected the footage is secure from other teams gaining an advantage.

For the wrestler and his coach hudl.com is a real nice concept that allows a very specific and technical sport based off of specific moves to be broken down over and over with ease.

Coaches and players can access the videos on their laptop wherever they are, draw on the screen with their cursor or stylus to mark players and patterns, record voiceovers, and so forth. The company uses Microsoft technologies like Windows Presentation Framework to develop the interface and make the software compatible with Xbox 360 controllers, as well as Silverlight to deliver video over the Web.

Outside of the video functionality, the system works like a home page for a company, or a college class, mixed with just enough facebook type interfacing to keep players engaged. Hobbies and interests can be listed while photographs and live scores or news from around the country stream across the bottom on a ticker. A calendar can be accessed by coaches and staff to keep players on task and informed. Coaches can even track how often a player is logged on, which adds a Big-Brother element to the package.

Featured on ESPN, Fox Sports and The New York Times, the Hudl concept was created in 2006 by partners John Wirtz and David Graff for the University of Nebraska football program. The financial backing came from none other than Jeff Raikes, the CEO of The Bill Gates Foundation named for the Microsoft Corporation owner. Raikes has two passions, technology and Nebraska football.

Agile Sports’ customers include the Cornhuskers (its first big-name client, through a connection with former Husker coach Bill Callahan), the New York Jets of the National Football League, and nearly 400 high school teams. Former New York Jets coach Eric Mangini brought the Hudl concept to the NFL and then took it with him to Cleveland. The Jets liked the program so much they kept using it.

Agile began an association with the Nebraska-Lincoln sister school, Nebraska-Omaha and their defending NCAA National championship wrestling team this season. As the first college wrestling program in the country to take advantage of the software UNO has seen immediate results. “We are very excited about the opportunity to be involved in this cutting edge technology,” said Nebraska-Omaha Assistant Head Coach Ron Higdon. “We like the fact that we can go into the software and add coaching input without the wrestler being right there. Then our athletes can view the tapes at home and make the needed adjustments. This allows more time for actual practice.”

Hudl is offered at a base package price $800 for the first team and $400 each for the next two teams. After three teams all other teams at the school can join for free. Customer support, backup files and upgrades or new features are included at no additional cost. In addition voice reports, tendancy report and the highlight DVD are available. The highlight video can include every match or specific matches or moves.

There is also a section for college recruiters to go into the program and see how specific athletes are doing. Because the program is updated following each contest a college recruiter does not have to wait for a DVD to arrive in the mail in order to track potential student-athletes.

If you are interested in learning more about the future of wrestling match video preperation call Agile Co-Owner John Wirtz direct at 402 817 0061. Or via email at john@hudl.com The website location www.hudl.com also has a demo feature and the program is offered at a 30 day free trial.
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Last edited by MR TWISTER; 12-05-2009 at 10:40 AM.
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