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Stanford Football's Digital Playbook

Cardinal is first NCAA team to implement iPad-based system
Friday, September 13, 2013

Stanford's quarterback prepares to make a pass at the 2013 Rose Bowl game

The Stanford Cardinal football team has an innovative, high-tech weapon in its arsenal: iPad-based live digital playbooks.

Each August, 150 secured and specially configured iPads are distributed to coaches and players in lieu of the standard rotation of four-pound binders. “We can make changes and instantly update everybody's iPad,” noted coach David Shaw. If lost or stolen, the confidential playbooks can be erased remotely.

Technologists from the IT Services Computer Resource Consulting and Strategy and Architecture teams partnered with Cardinal Football and app developer PlayerLync in 2012 to rapidly implement the new infrastructure and provide Stanford IT architectural oversight. After pushing hard together against tight deadlines, they delivered in time for that fall's season.

“I was completely impressed with the fact that with all the moving parts, and people this project touched, that it came together so fast and with such great and timely results” said DAPER project sponsor Mike Gleeson.

“Support staffers no longer have to spend endless hours every week assembling paper, three-ring notebooks,” Gleeson added, “and then seven days later, empty them out and rebuilding them again and again, each week for the next opponent's book.”

Stanford is the first NCAA team to implement paperless playbooks.

Photo credit: Cal Sports Media via AP Images

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