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LBSU men’s basketball video causes stir on Web

Marketing department also films promotional clip with women’s hoops team.

Steven Carcano, Staff Writer

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It’s funny where two giant, plastic hamster balls found in a closet can lead to when the Internet is involved.

The Long Beach State athletics marketing department has made a few creative YouTube videos to help promote the upcoming men’s and women’s basketball seasons.

The video entitled “LBSU Basketball: No sick days” has received more than 34,000 hits with the help of Sports Illustrated, ESPN, USA Today, Yahoo and Twitter. The 46-second on-the-spot video, shot by first-year social media and video assistant Dale Johnson, was first picked up last Friday by the Hot Clicks section of Sports Illustrated’s website.

“I was really surprised. It’s funny the way stuff can spread sometimes,” said Johnson, who graduated last spring and served as co-president of the Monson Maniacs student section. “We got like 21,000 hits from Sports Illustrated. Power of the Internet, I guess.”

Filmed in the Walter Pyramid, the video shows fans how the team has prepared for the upcoming season. Junior guard Larry Anderson looks at the camera and says, ” Me and my teammates have been working hard in the offseason. We even come to practice when we’re sick, so we have to keep them away from everybody else.”

Johnson then cuts to guards Greg Plater (listed at 6-foot-1) and Casper Ware (5-foot-10), in separate bubbles, attempting to play defense. Senior forward Tristan Wilson then throws a pass intended for Plater, but the ball ricochets off the hamster ball and back to Wilson, who then connects for a 3-pointer.

When asked if there was any hesitation about getting into the hamster ball, Plater said, “Not at all.” He added that Tuesday night was the first time that he was made aware that the video had become so popular.

“They had fun with it,” Johnson said. “It was kind of hard to get [the players] to settle down. They were running around in them.”

Another video entitled ” How do you play at The Beach?” features the women’s basketball team doing practice drills throughout the campus, including near the fountain at Brotman Hall.

The players dribble through campus, make passes to each other and pretend that random students are from an opposing team. When a male student attempts to shoot a piece of paper into a trashcan, senior guard Courtney Jacob displays her shot-blocking skills and yells, “Get that out!”

Other videos include Dan Monson, the head coach of the men’s basketball team, and 49ers mascot Prospector Pete. The yet-to-be-released video, labeled “Hoop Withdrawals,” shows Prospector Pete playing with a football as Monson stares at him while wearing a football helmet and sitting at his desk. The video ends with a picture that reads, “We’re all going crazy. Be patient.”

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