BLOOMINGTON, Ind.—IU Athletics today announced that all 19 home men's basketball games will be broadcast in Mandarin on the university's official athletics website, IUHoosiers.com, making Indiana University the first institution in the country to broadcast college basketball games in Mandarin. These broadcasts can be accessed for free on the IU Athletics website anywhere in the world.
IU students who speak fluent Mandarin will provide the play-by-play and color commentary for the games, and will be trained through the university's Mark Cuban Center for Sports Media and Technology. IU athletics has received strong student interest in announcing the games and expects to field multiple two-person announcing teams for the season.
"Basketball is the most popular sport in China and broadcasting IU men's basketball games in Mandarin will bring one of America's most storied and famous basketball programs to a country of more than 1.3 billion people in their native language," said IU President Michael A. McRobbie. "It also will help cement our relationships with thousands of our Chinese students and alumni, and ensure they remain strongly connected to Indiana University".
Approximately 3,000 students from China attend IU Bloomington, representing the largest single group of international students on campus. IU also has about 4,450 Chinese alumni around the world.
"Every day we strive to be integrated with our university and charge our coaches, staff and students to be part of something bigger than ourselves," said IU Vice President and Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Fred Glass. "In the noble spirit of Herman B Wells' commitment to internationalism, this effort led by President McRobbie is a remarkable opportunity for students to bring the excitement of IU basketball to the largest group of international students on campus and to thousands of Chinese alumni globally."
With assistance from the IU Office of International Services and IU faculty from the East Asian Languages and Cultures department in the College of Arts and Sciences, student broadcasters were recruited by the Mark Cuban Center for Sports Media and Technology. More than 20 students fluent in Mandarin have signed up to be commentators. Through the Cuban Center, broadcast professionals will train and prepare the students to provide play-by-play and color commentary for games.
"We cannot thank the Office of International Services and the EALC faculty enough for their help in this process," said Associate Athletic Director Jeremy Gray. "The response from Mandarin speaking students wanting to get involved in this project has been overwhelming. The Cuban Center is proud to help make IU the first in the nation to stream college basketball games in Mandarin."
The broadcast streams on IUHoosiers.com can be accessed here. The streams are free and broadcast information will be distributed throughout the season on the men's basketball schedule page, official game notes, and on IU basketball's official Twitter account @IndianaMBB.
IU men's basketball opens the season at Assembly Hall with an exhibition game against Ottawa on Tuesday, Nov. 3 at 7:00 p.m.