Drone defense systems at NCAA football games


In the current issue of Stadia magazine, we look at the evolving security threats that sports venues and their operators face, including defending against drones, which is a measure NCAA football games are also employing.

Over the course of this year’s season, multiple venues in Boise, Idaho, that have hosted NCAA games have been protected using sophisticated counter-UAS detection and identification systems.

Black Sage, a defense technology integrator, provided technology solutions in the form of radars and cameras mounted at college stadia to offer early detection as well as AI classification to reduce false alarms.

The company’s work also aids local law enforcement to provide the location of drone operators for apprehension, as well as forensic data storage to ensure successful prosecution.   

“Stadia and other open-air venues are particularly vulnerable to the growing risks posed by consumer drones. Federal law currently restricts the use of drones in the vicinity of major league and NCAA sporting events. UAS operations are prohibited within a three-mile radius of the stadium or venue from one hour prior to one hour after an event, known as a Temporary Flight Restriction. Stadium operators and law enforcement have few options to enforce the restrictions and are now turning to Black Sage to provide layered counter-UAS systems to fill the security gap,” Black Sage announced in a press release.

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James has been Editor of Stadia since 2018 having worked at print and digital magazines and websites around the world covering everything from lifestyle to sport, technology, motoring, and more. He also edits Electric & Hybrid Vehicle Technology International.

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