UM vs. FSU. Is there anymore that needs to be said? One of the great rivalries in all of college football. The best part for me was that I had the best seats in the house to watch it; right on the field.
This was the game I was most excited to photograph. I know the history, the rivalry and the pure hatred that exists between these two teams. Even if the game ended in a blowout I know the beginning of it would be nothing short of electric.
I normally get to the stadium an hour prior to kickoff but since this was a huge game and knowing how many people I knew had tickets to the UM vs. FSU game, I went 4 hours early with friends and family to tailgate. We showed up at the stadium and the place was packed. Tents propped up everywhere and the sweet smells emanating from grills littered the air like leaves in the fall breeze. Canes and Seminole fans walking up and down the parking lot, trash talking with each other. This is college football.
I went into the stadium an hour and a half prior to the game to get my camera settings locked in. It was a night time game and I never shot in a stadium under the lights before and I wanted to make sure I had everything dialed in prior to the game. As I walked out the tunnel I was greeted to the sights of ESPN and their numerous camera crews and equipment. Fans were already chanting in the stands and you could see the players had a different look in their eye prior to the game.
I took multiple shots during warmups to get myself ready. I set my ISO to 1600 and my shutter speed varied from 1/500 to 1/1000th of a second. I kept my aperture locked at 2.8. I always shoot in Manual mode. I like having complete control over the camera. The only thing I was concerned about shooting with my D300 was the amount of noise it would produce with an ISO set at 1600.
I walked onto the field for the UM team running out of the tunnel and found myself surrounded by throngs of other photographers, more than usual. The reason of course was UM vs. FSU. After the introductions I found myself a spot in the endzone to setup shop and that was where I was most of the game. I would look up and down the field and see nothing but photographers everywhere.
The game started out with a bang. Turnovers, touchdowns etc. The stadium was abuzz with electricity ready to erupt on the next big play. As the game wore on, it was clear FSU was just dominating. By the time the game ended, the stadium of canes fans at emptied out and only thing left was that annoying chant the Seminole fans do.
I had a great time at the UM vs. FSU game. I got some great shots and I missed some as well. There was a good amount of noise in my photos but I was able to clean the majority of it up using Nik Software’s DFine software. I have one more night game left but I already know it won’t be as exciting as an UM vs. FSU game.