Feb. 10, 2022 - In April of 2021, NFL teams returned to their regional headquarters for the annual draft — except for the Los Angeles Rams, this year's NFC champs. The Rams took the opportunity to rent a 9,000-square-foot house on the Southern California coast, load it up with amenities including Crestron smart home technology, and invite present and past Rams luminaries for a video shoot hosted by comic actress Rebel Wilson.
The Rams PR team felt that the pandemic had one silver lining as far as the draft was concerned: As the team's VP of Partnership Marketing Lexi vonderLieth told the New York Post, "Last year, a lot of players were at home due to COVID, and fans got to see inside of coaches and GMs' [general managers'] homes." That virtual peek into the lives of the staff helped "humanize" the proceedings, according to vonderLieth, and the "draft house" concept extended the idea to the players, too.
Crestron's contributions to the home are evident as soon as Wilson hits the front door of the Malibu residence. From the Post:
"Welcome to my draft house. Let me show you around," said the 41-year-old Australian actress in the video tour released April 26 . As she enters the house, Crestron smart home devices ask her, "Whose house?" — to which she replies, "Rams' house!"
The Crestron connection to sports — college and pro — has become especially robust over the last decade. It's come primarily in the field of commercial integrations — specifically, technological solutions for some of the most recognizable venues in North America.
The Green Bay Packers' home field is legendary — since it opened in 1957, it has played host to some of the most talented players and coaches in NFL history. Crestron technology controls the lighting in the stands that surround the iconic "frozen tundra" (apologies to ESPN great Chris Berman) of the smallest market in all of major-league sports.
Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum
While it might be best known as the home of the USC Trojans, the Coliseum has hosted NFL championships, Olympic events, and even political conventions. The solutions Crestron provided here include AV distribution and room control. The results have been nothing short of spectacular. Joe Wray, director of learning environments for USC, says, "Crestron DigitalMedia provides us with the ability to take what is happening in one area and broadcast it to the rest of the stadium in real time, making each event unique and special for our guests."
Little Caesars Arena
The Crestron lighting controls in this incredible, modern entertainment facility had to be flexible: simply put, this place is used for a lot of different stuff. It's the home of the Detroit Red Wings of the NHL and the NBA's Pistons, and both leagues have their own strict lighting standards. When it's not hosting hoops or hockey, the Arena does duty as a concert venue, adding another layer of complexity to the system.
The Mecca Sports Bar and Grill
This massive sports bar adjacent to the home of the NBA's Milwaukee Bucks displays a broad variety of events through the two-story, 11,500-square-foot building. "We really wanted the Mecca to recreate the experience and excitement of being in an arena," says Justin Green, vice president of hospitality for the Bucks. "By standardizing on Crestron DM NVX, we were able to bring our vision to life." What's more, the AV controls are designed to be so intuitive any staffer can operate the system on day one.
The CCSU eSports Center
When it comes to eSports, Crestron's not just part of the venue, it's part of the game. Central Connecticut State University already had Crestron technology deployed throughout the campus, but needed an eSports facility for the school — it's a huge draw for a growing number of prospective students. Crestron, along with help from project partner Adtech Systems, created a no-latency, state-of-the-art gaming center in a mere four months.
Interested in seeing more of the Rams' Draft House? Find the video here.