Northern Illinois shooting guard Anthony Johnson's 3-pointer had barely dropped through the net when Patrick Gorman, perched in a cramped TV control room just off the arena floor, fired a string of commands.
"We got a second angle?" Gorman said. "Ready B. Freeze, dissolve. Roll it. Ready three? Roll it. Very nice."
His orders produced a well-crafted instant replay sequence for those watching the action via the website of sports media colossus ESPN.
But this was no ESPN production — from high-definition cameras to racks of blinking servers, virtually everything involved in broadcasting the game was provided by NIU. Even Gorman, a video producer, is a...