CBS College Highlights Service Academies With Week-Long Salute
Last year, CBS College Sports Network created a red, white, and blue theme for Armed Forces Appreciation Day, when Air Force, Army, and Navy all played football games on the network on a single Saturday. This year, one day was not enough. For a whole week, Oct. 25-31, CBS College Sports Network is celebrating the nation’s service academies with its Armed Forces Salute, offering three Inside Academy Football documentaries and a tripleheader of service-academy football games on Saturday Oct. 30.
“We felt that the service academies symbolize the best that this country has to offer in terms of patriotism, commitment, honor, and duty,” explains Steve Herbst, EVP/GM of the CBS College Sports Network. “The young men and women who go to these academies are smart, athletic leaders who are committed to excellence. As someone who runs a college sports network, it’s pretty cool to be associated with that kind of commitment and those kinds of people.”
CBS College kicked off the salute with an event on the USS Intrepid aircraft carrier in Manhattan, where representatives from all three service academies joined executives and production teams from the CBS College Sports Network. All the guests were treated to a sneak preview of the 30-minute Inside Academy Football documentaries, which chronicle the daily routines of football players at each of the three service academies.
“These kids, their summers aren’t quite like the regular college kid’s summers,” Herbst says. “What they’re giving up and their five-, six-, seven-year commitment during and after their years there, these kids are a little bit different.”
Each of the three documentaries focuses on some of those differences, highlighting players who excel on the field, in the classroom, and in the field of duty. Inside Academy Football: Army highlights the experiences of junior linebacker Andrew Rodriguez, son of Lieutenant General David Rodriguez, who is currently deployed in Afghanistan. On Saturday afternoon, when Army hosts VMI, CBS College will provide a live satellite hookup with General Rodriguez from Afghanistan, to get his thoughts on the game and life in the armed forces.
“We’ll have special guests at every game,” Herbst adds. “We have a special graphic look on our air for this week, we have a full week of programming celebrating the armed forces, and we’re doing a free preview through Nov. 7 that makes us available in 58 million homes. It’s a very all-encompassing week.”
The Inside Academy Football documentaries debut this week and will air several times throughout the week leading up to Saturday’s tripleheader. At noon, VMI takes on Army; Duke visits Navy at 3:30 p.m., and Utah faces Air Force at 7:30 p.m., all on the CBS College Sports Network.