'Maroon and White Tonight' feeds fans' hunger for MSU sports talk

“The Voice of the Bulldogs” Neil Price and WMSV Manager Anthony Craven are co-hosts of a newly-created weekly MSU sports talk show.

Mississippi State University is collaborating with the Television Center and WMSV for “Maroon and White Tonight,” a brand-new weekly show catering to fans of MSU Athletics. The show features two co-hosts, the “Voice of the Bulldogs” and MSU sports announcer, Neil Price, and WMSV Manager Anthony Craven.

Price has been MSU’s “Voice of the Bulldogs” since 2017, when he relocated to Starkville from his 12-year broadcasting position with the University of Kentucky. Price serves as a play-by-play announcer for football and men’s basketball at MSU. 

Craven is an MSU alumnus and has worked as a general manager for WMSV since 2015, and he serves as a public-address announcer for football games. Price and Craven both have extensive backgrounds in radio and sports.

“Maroon and White Tonight” revolves around the dynamic between these two co-hosts and their love of all things in the world of Bulldog sports. The program is filmed each week in the newly redesigned MSU Television Center, located inside the Wise Center off-campus. 

The first episode of “Maroon and White Tonight” aired in August, and the idea for a weekly sports program came up over the summer, courtesy of Price. Price’s vision of a half-hour MSU sports show stemmed from his hiring at the TV Center earlier this year. While working full-time for the Television Center, he was tasked with creating some original programming specifically for MSTV and pitched an idea for a weekly sports show with Craven as his co-host. 

“We want to share our university stories with people who are passionate about Mississippi State Athletics, and we want to have fun doing it,” Price said in a press release.

The show is currently on its eighth episode, with plans to have one episode per week all the way until baseball season ends next June. “Maroon and White Tonight” will run as a 10-month program with breaks in July and most of August. As the show progresses, viewers will be able to see Price and Craven’s takes on football, men and women’s basketball and baseball throughout the academic calendar.

“Maroon and White Tonight” is still a new program, but ideas are already in motion to develop it even more. David Garraway, executive producer of the show, hopes to include ways for students to become more involved and help with the show in the future. The crew currently working on the program is a relatively small, but experienced, group of five to eight people, depending on availability and needs for that week’s show.

“We plan to incorporate student-produced feature segments into ‘Maroon and White Tonight,' with a goal of providing practical career experience for communication department upperclassmen,” Garraway said.

The show begins with a news segment covering the previous week in sports and what is coming the following week, then a breakdown of last week’s game and how it will impact the season. From there, Price and Craven spend their remaining time interviewing athletes or coaches that are relevant to that week’s game.

The show always begins with around a 10-minute recap consisting of the most recent game with soundbites, commentary and breakdown of plays which then segues into big, current events in the SEC. After the recap, Price and Craven devote the rest of the show’s runtime to interviews with MSU student athletes, coaches or athletes affiliated with the opposing team. 

“It’s ⅓ Neil and I at the anchor desk and ⅔ Neil and I interviewing MSU people, and also people from the opposing team. That’s been our formula during the fall semester,” Craven said.

“Maroon and White Tonight” is available to watch via livestream at www.mstv.msstate.edu and on their official Vimeo channel, MWTonight. Cable viewers can also view the show on MSTV and WCBI on Saturdays at 10:30 a.m. Aside from those options, the show is also available to download as a podcast on iTunes.

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