Upper Deck difficulties in the Fountains

DeAndre Pearson

The Upper Deck, a sports-themed room at the Osprey Fountains, has drawn criticism due to technical difficulties with their television service.

Since their 2009 opening, the Upper Deck has been a social hub for many sports fans that live at the Fountains. The Upper Deck houses several flat screen TVs with tables and chairs. However, instead of walking in to live sporting events, fans have only been greeted by black screens. The lack of service has reportedly created confusion and frustration among many students.

Photo by Alexis Molinaro

“It’s a shame. I always love going there to watch the games happen and I would love to see that tradition come back to the Upper Deck,” said Cuinn Crawford, a Transportation and Logistics senior.

As a devoted Tampa Bay Buccaneers fan, going to the Upper Deck was Crawford’s primary way to watch his favorite team, but he was disappointed when he learned about the technical issue at the Upper Deck. That disconnect resonated with Crawford.

“Not getting to support them as my family back home is, kinda makes you feel left out,” Crawford said.

Sports Management Major Patrick Franza felt a similar sense of disappointment when he learned about the issue.

“Honestly I was kind of upset because we don’t get any of the out of area games,” said Franza. With no service going to the televisions at the Upper Deck, Franza now uses other means to watch his team. “It just turned out that I bought the NFL Ticket for my computer so now I can watch any game,” he said.

Senior Director of Housing and Residence Life Robert Boyle says the issue with the televisions is not North Florida’s fault, but that of the television service provider, DIRECTV. Boyle said since 2009, DIRECTV was providing service to each of the televisions. However, this summer they reportedly learned that the televisions in the Upper Deck have not been receiving the service from DIRECTV.

According to Boyle, there have been numerous investigations done and multiple attempts to reach out to DIRECTV for relief. But despite the ongoing struggle to get this issue resolved, Boyle remains focused on restoring service to the Upper Deck.  

“We want to use the room the way it was intended, that’s what we’re still working towards,” Boyle said.

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