But that doesn’t make him unimportant to the Raiders football program. For the past 20 years, Brintnall has manned the video camera that films each football game.
“Everything you do in any football program is you have to evaluate yourself and your opponent,” Reed football coach Ernie Howren said. “The best way to evaluate yourself is to watch film after the game. He does such a great job videotaping the games, and not just individual players, that we can see everything that is going on every play. It allows us to get that evaluation done. I have said he’s as important as anybody we have on our coaching staff because of what he does filming for us each night.”
Brintnall pretty much fell into the job. Originally he only filmed his son’s games for family use, but he missed one game due to being out of town. He borrowed the film from that game from the regular film man and was discouraged by the quality.
So the next year he volunteered for the job and he’s been the guy ever since.
The ironic part is Brintnall didn’t have any background in football, either playing or coaching, prior to joining the Reed football program.
“I love doing it. I love being around high school sports,” Brintnall said. “I played basketball and ran track when I was in high school a long time ago, and I just enjoy being part of the football program. I know what I do is useful to the kids and the coaches, and I really can’t imagine not doing it now. It’s part of my world and a part of my life. Every season and even every game I get excited to go.”
Howren is certainly glad Brintnall is part of the program.
“Personally to me, he’s a friend. He’s somebody over the years we’ve built up a friendship where I confide in Steve as much as anybody,” Howren said. “What I love about him is I can get an honest answer from him. Steve is not afraid to tell you what he feels and what he’s seeing out there. Since he’s been doing this for 20 years, he’s picked up a lot about the game. He’s just been somebody who means the world to me and somebody I can talk to on a daily basis during the season to get me information.
“He’s meant a lot to me and it’s meant a lot to the program to have somebody like that. Everything we try to do within our program we try to do at a high level. Steve is another example of somebody buying into that part of our program and doing a great job like he does.”
Brintnall, a pit boss at Harrah’s, is getting back to normal everyday life with the Raiders’ season over. He said he gets to spend time with his wife again because the work he does for Reed football is very time consuming during the season.
Over the past 20 years, Brintnall has only missed two Reed games and has even made all the Elko trips. He has every game for the past 20 years on video or DVD.
Brintnall films all three levels of football at Reed High.
On each game night, Brintnall tapes each game on a camera. At the same time, the camera is connected to a portable DVD burner so he can record the game two places at once. He also attaches a laptop to the camera, so the coaching staff can get what they need after the game.
He then goes home and makes copies of the games, so Howren can trade film with opposing coaches Saturday morning. That means late nights where Brintnall might not get done until after midnight following the JV and Varsity games Fridays.
Then during the week, he will look at the video from the wide-view end zone cam, and take the highlights from the game for the end-of-the-season video.
He will also join the players and coaches a few times throughout the season on Saturday mornings and watch them break down film, so he can make sure what he’s filming is what they want to see.
“I just enjoy what I do, who I do it with and the people I do it for. It’s totally rewarding for me,” Brintnall said. “I know that what I do is valuable to the coaching staff and the players. That’s what keeps me going. If I didn’t think they used it, I probably wouldn’t do it. It’s really valuable to Ernie and everyone. I’m thrilled to death to be able to do it for them.”
Brintnall has filmed almost every other sport in the past, but now focuses solely on football.
Filming games also became a family affair when his son, Cris, took up the same hobby. Cris, 34, has helped the past seven years. He mans the end zone cam, while the elder Brintnall tapes from the press box area.
“I love it. It’s a bonding moment for the two of us,” Brintnall said. “He gets as emotionally attached to the team as I do, so it’s really fun.”