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2020-21 Football State Championships Media Policy

It is the goal of the University Interscholastic League to provide the media with comprehensive, hospitable services during UIL State Championship events. We understand the difficulty of covering these state championships, and we appreciate the positive publicity our schools and athletes receive as a result of your work. In formulating a media policy, we have tried to address as many media groups as possible. We understand that different media outlets have different needs, and we strive to meet the needs of everyone involved.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and attendance restrictions to maintain social distancing, the UIL is substantially limiting the number of credentialed media at state events. While we will do our best to accommodate as many media outlets as possible, we reserve the right to deny credentials based on space limitations. Preference will go to media outlets who have demonstrated prior coverage of hometown or circulation-area team(s) at prior postseason competition.

Photo/Video **
Due to COVID-19 social distancing requirements, media will not be allowed on the field level at any time. Photographers will be allowed to shoot from designated areas within the first few rows of stands on the lower level. A photo/video work room will be available in the Media Area of the RADIO Press Box.

Press Conference **
All post-game press conferences will be held virtually on Zoom, with no media attending in-person. Please contact the UIL Media Department by 5 p.m., Tuesday, Dec. 15, for login instructions. (pr@uiltexas.org) All press conferences will be made available online after their completion.

Face Coverings
All guests at AT&T Stadium will be REQUIRED to wear a face covering at all times (including stadium parking lots), except when they are actively eating or drinking. For full AT&T Stadium health & safety guidelines, please visit their Safe Stadium information page.

Credentials
The UIL is not issuing Year Long Credentials for the 2020-2021 school year due to varying space limitations at each event. Only individuals with UIL-issued media credentials will be allowed access to UIL State Championships. In order to obtain media credentials to UIL State Championship events, certain protocol must be followed.

  • To request media credentials for the Football State Championships, you must fill out the online UIL media credential request form (which will be available on the UIL website starting December 7th for 1A-4A classifications). 
  • Media outlets must identify the game(s) they are covering in their credential request.
  • Each person, along with his or her duties (reporter or photographer), must be listed in the request.
  • Requester must be employed by the media outlet requesting credentials. Requests submitted by freelancers will be denied.
  • Requests via telephone or email will NOT be accepted.
  • REQUESTS MUST BE RECEIVED BY THE DEADLINE FOR THE EVENT. LATE REQUESTS CANNOT BE CONSIDERED DUE TO COVID-19 CAPACITY LIMITATIONS. (View the event deadlines.)
  • The UIL makes the final determination of whether or not media credential requests are granted. If your request is denied, the UIL will make every attempt at contacting your media outlet via the email provided in the online credential request. It is your responsibility to assure your credential request has been successfully received. All credentials will be placed on reserve at the state championship site and will not be mailed.
  • Your credential(s) may be picked up at the AT&T Stadium North Ticket Office Wednesday, Dec. 16 and Thursday, Dec. 17 from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., and on Friday, Dec. 18 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all media members will be required to complete a Certified Entry Form in compliance with all stadium health and safety policies prior to gaining entrance to the stadium. This form will be distributed electronically to all credentialed media.
  • You may check the status of your credential request via e-mail at: pr@uiltexas.org

*PLEASE NOTE*

Credentials or tickets for spouses, friends, children, etc. will not be provided.
Acceptance of the media credentials to a UIL championship event constitutes an agreement by the individual to abide by all media regulations of the UIL.

FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY: The use of electronic flash equipment, other than remote off-camera strobe flash, is prohibited at all indoor UIL State Championship events. The UIL prohibits the sale of photographs from UIL State Championship events and will not credential any photographers whose photos will be used for any purpose other than media coverage.

HIGHLIGHT POLICY: Games cannot be filmed in their entirety and footage should be used for highlight purposes only. Highlights aired during live games should be no longer than 2 minutes in length for all game coverage combined. Linear television highlights aired postgame or for evening newscasts (while game is still in play) should be no longer than 2 minutes in length for all game coverage combined. 

Newspapers
Credentials will be provided only to reporters covering hometown or circulation-area teams. Reporters must present photo identification in order to claim credentials. NEWSPAPERS MUST IDENTIFY THE GAME(S) THEY ARE COVERING IN THEIR ONLINE MEDIA CREDENTIAL REQUEST.

Due to COVID-19 spacing requirements, media will not be allowed on the field level at any time.

Daily newspapers may have up to two credentials. Weekly and semi-weekly newspapers may have no more than one credential. Publishing companies that publish weekly and semi-weekly newspapers for more than one community will be considered a single weekly or semi-weekly newspaper. The UIL must have names for all persons claiming passes, along with his or her duties (reporter or photographer), and all persons must bring photo identification. NEWSPAPERS WITH NO VESTED INTEREST IN THE EVENT WILL BE DENIED CREDENTIALS.

Radio Stations
Radio stations providing a live play-by-play audio broadcast of the event will be limited to six credentials per station. Radio stations not doing a live play-by-play audio broadcast of the event will be denied credentials due to spacing limitations. STATIONS WITH NO VESTED INTEREST IN THE EVENT WILL BE DENIED CREDENTIALS. Radio stations must identify school(s) they are covering in their online media credential request.

Entities providing a live audio broadcast on the Internet are subject to the same fees and policies as radio stations. There is a $200 rights fee for each state championship football game. This must be paid using cash or check and must be delivered to UIL staff in the writers press box in AT&T Stadium prior to your broadcast.

Due to COVID-19 spacing requirements, media will not be allowed on the field level at any time.

In addition to requesting media credentials from the UIL, radio stations doing a live play-by-play must play a UIL Institutional Spot. These commercials can be downloaded here: Radio Playoff Guidelines. The other requirements that apply to the playoffs (venue and school approval, Radio Playoff Request form, and state championship promotional read) are not required for the state championships. 

Television
TV Stations will be issued one media credential. The UIL must have the name for the person claiming the credential, along with his or her duties (reporter or photographer), and all persons must bring photo identification. STATIONS WITH NO VESTED INTEREST IN THE EVENT WILL BE DENIED CREDENTIALS. Television stations must identify game(s) they are covering in their online media credential request.

Due to COVID-19 spacing requirements, media will not be allowed on the field level at any time.

Internet Sites
Internet sites may be issued one credential. Requests will be considered on an individual basis.

Websites will not be credentialed unless they meet specifications outlined below:

  1. Must be a legal corporate entity that has been in business for at least one full calendar year and has provided coverage of a UIL member school for at least one full year.
  2. Must provide original daily coverage of UIL athletic teams with its own staff of full-time reporters, photographers and equipment.

No credentials will be issued to any website that is not deemed by the University Interscholastic League Media Coordinator to have adequate editorial oversight.

The following Internet sites will not be granted credentials:

  • Personal page Internet site publishers (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, etc.)
  • Agate Internet sites
  • Sites that do not produce original content on a daily basis will not be credentialed. Sites that do not update original content daily are up to the discretion of the UIL.
  • Internet sites associated in any way with the promotion of alcohol, tobacco, gambling, political election issues/candidates or lewd subject matter as determined by the UIL
  • Any other Internet site deemed in poor taste or not in compliance with the mission of Interscholastic athletics as determined by the UIL

Magazines
Magazines may be issued one credential. Requests will be considered on an individual basis.

Games cannot be filmed in their entirety and footage should be used for highlight purposes only. Highlight footage cannot be shared live and should be no more than two minutes in length for all game coverage combined.

The following Magazines will not be granted credentials:

  • Magazines associated in any way with the promotion of alcohol, tobacco, gambling, political election issues/candidates or lewd subject matter as determined by the UIL
  • Any other magazine deemed in poor taste or not in compliance with the mission of Interscholastic athletics as determined by the UIL

Magazines must furnish, upon request, samples of previous issues. Samples would need to be received before the deadline to request a credential has passed.

High School Student Media
Administrators of schools participating in the championships should request credentials prior to the deadline following the same protocol as other media outlets (see above).

Each school will be issued one media credential total. The credential is intended for use by students in their school’s journalism program and should include newspaper, yearbook and broadcast journalism. Only individuals with UIL-issued media credentials will be allowed access to the UIL State Championships. Students must show a valid student identification card from a high school participating in the championships in order to obtain UIL media credentials – no exceptions.

The UIL must have names for the person claiming passes, along with his or her duties (reporter or photographer).

Due to COVID-19 spacing requirements, media will not be allowed on the field level at any time.

High School media credentials will not be considered for parents, booster clubs, spirit groups or other coaches to take pictures or footage of the contest.

Commercial Photographers
The UIL does not issue media credentials to commercial photographers. Media credentials are intended for media purposes only. The UIL prohibits the sale of photographs from State Championship events.

Recruiting Services/Scouts
The UIL does not issue media credentials to recruiting services or scouts.

Additional Information
The UIL’s goal is to provide the best service possible to the working media. Part of this responsibility is guaranteeing that services are available only to the working media. To request media credentials, please follow the protocol listed above by filling out the online credential request form.

Media Department
University Interscholastic League
(512) 471-5883
pr@uiltexas.org