ESPN viewers regularly tune in to hear about the exploits of national teams like the Green Bay Packers, Los Angeles Lakers and St. Louis Cardinals. But executives want to capture the interest of those eager for news about the high-school exploits of the Lake Travis Cavaliers of Texas, the Arizona Compass Prep Dragons and the Notre Dame Knights of Sherman Oaks, Calif.
To do so, the Disney-backed sports-media giant has hired Marcel “Celly” Chappell and acquired the social media accounts tied to his company, BallerVisions, which is known for its social and digital presence in the high-school sports landscape. Chappell will join ESPN’s social media team as a producer, and ESPN will take control of BallerVisions’ YouTube channel and presence on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.
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“We haven’t been as aggressive in the high-school video highlights space, even though a number of high school games are played on