Poker rooms across the country are slowly reopening and trying to get back to proper action amidst strict protocols and social distancing measures. One poker club that never had any issues during the lockdown was the University of Nebraska Lincoln (UNL) Poker Club.
The UNL Poker Club ranks itself as the number one poker club when it comes to all collegiate poker clubs in the country. UNL Poker Club formed a partnership with Twitch and is now live streaming its weekly poker games on Sundays and Thursdays at 7 pm. As of now, this is the only collegiate poker club in America that is consistently live streaming its games on the Twitch platform.
What is interesting to note is that this live stream is not like the usual live streams on Twitch. This is because the poker table at UNL Poker Club uses radio frequency identification (RFID) technology to provide a first class live streaming experience to Twitch users. This is done by equipping the poker table with a radio antenna that is connected to a software program.
When players place their cards on the table, those spots pick up the cards and it is broadcasted on the live stream. Alec Rome, who is a junior broadcasting major and the president of the UNL Poker Club says the live streams are similar to the quality of broadcasts on ESPN because the RFID technology makes things a lot more professional and helps with the seamless broadcast.
Students Build RFID Poker Table
Rome provided more insight into how the poker table came to be. The students decided that they did not want to buy a poker table but preferred to build one. They created this innovative RFID poker table at the Nebraska Innovation Studio in September. The students decided bought the wood, materials and built the table from the ground up.
Finally… THE TABLE IS DONE!
A huge thank you to everyone who has helped make this table possible, from fundraising to the finished product.
We're excited to stream the Premier League soon! 😊 pic.twitter.com/a6dntuyQ3h
— UNL Poker Club (@UNLPoker) September 29, 2020
The poker table was taken to Andersen Hall and club members tried to do their first live stream broadcast with school equipment. They used the Tricaster which is a live production system but faced a lot of issues since the system was not very flexible.
Rome decided to scrap the Tricaster and instead put together his own equipment which included tablets, smartphones, a stream deck and a PC for gaming. The entire setup takes just 2 hours to assemble and 30 minutes to tear down. If you want to check out the UNL Poker Club live stream, tune in on Sundays and Thursdays.