What's new in esports for August 2019?
|Dakota State University||Madison||South Dakota|
|Milwaukee School of Engineering||Milwaukee||Wisconsin|
|Saint Francis University||Loretto||Pennsylvania|
|Wayland Baptist University||Plainview||Texas|
Earlier this year, Newzoo reported that the global esports market is expected to eclipse $1 billion in revenue in 2019. If it does, it will be the first time the esports industry reaches $1 billion in a single year. With so much growth and demand in the esports industry, hundreds of colleges and universities are lining up to get in on the game, with many pouring millions of dollars into building the best esports programs in order to attract the world’s most talented cyberathletes. Today, we would like to add four to the list.
We are pleased to announce that Dakota State University, Milwaukee School of Engineering, Saint Francis University, and Wayland Baptist University are the latest schools to launch a competitive esports program. Here you go.
Dakota State University, Madison, South Dakota
Dakota State University (DSU) has launched an esports program (DSU Esports), making it the 13th sport at the school. The university joined the Collegiate STAR League, which covers a number of esports games, including the popular League of Legends. DSU League of Legends has just 18 spots on two teams, including substitutes, so tryouts are competitive. In addition, team members must be able to prove their enrollment to the Collegiate STAR League, along with maintaining good academic standing.
The campus already has a gaming club and a number of popular degree paths for potential players. Recently hired esports coach Andrew Roland said the degree paths the school has—cybersecurity, game design—fit in line with what the program wants to accomplish. “With all these great degrees, it just formulates into esports just really well,” he said.
According to the program website, each Saturday, DSU League of Legends teams meet at the school’s East Hall to go over game tape of their next challenger. The players seek out the rankings of their opponents players and find their weak spots in a quest to make it all the way to the professional tournament for League of Legends in South Korea. According to ESPN, one professional tournament for League of Legends in South Korea sold out an entire World Cup stadium in October.
Milwaukee School of Engineering, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Milwaukee School of Engineering (MSOE) has launched its very own esports program (MSOE Esports) with players set to scrimmage and compete against colleges nationwide in sanctioned tournaments for major video games such as League of Legends, Hearthstone, Dota 2, Overwatch, Rocket League, and Super Smash Bros. Because esports at MSOE is a club sport, the school will regulate student eligibility and participation.
Teams will practice on campus at the Kern Center—the home base for MSOE Esports with a designated space and gaming setup. In a Milwaukee School of Engineering press release, Dean of Students Kip Kussman said the school is “excited to provide this opportunity.”
“More than 100 students tried out for teams, and 80 students qualified. They are practicing and preparing for their first tournament,” he said.
For more information about MSOE Esports, visit the official MSOE Raiders website here.
Saint Francis University, Loretto, Pennsylvania
This fall, Saint Francis University (SFU) plans to launch SFU Esports, which “will be competitive at the highest level and will be a best-practice model for small institutions who are looking to make an impact within the esports industry and in the lives of students,” says the school. Program highlights include:
SFU-sponsored teams provide competitive opportunities for high-level
The SFU Esports Gaming Arena will be equipped with 18 pro-grade gaming stations, RGB lighting, and top-notch gear for every type of gamer.
Viewers, fans, and subscribers can follow the team's competitions via a live-stream.
Internships and mentorships connect the world of gaming to an array of careers.
Open-play and intramural tournaments available to gamers of all levels.
When the program launches, players will compete in Overwatch, League of Legends, Rocket League, and Super Smash Bros. As the program grows, the school says that it plans to add other game titles.
For more information about SFU Esports, visit the official SFU Esports website here.
Wayland Baptist University, Plainview, Texas
With the launch of Wayland Baptist University Esports (WBU Esports), the university became the 141st member of the National Association of Collegiate Esports (NACE). Just weeks ago, the program hired its first coach, Duncan Sweeney, and the school says specialized equipment is on order including computers, keyboards, headsets, and gaming chairs. In a Lubbock Avalanche-Journal report, Sweeney said, “we’re getting the works, they’re going all out, I’m pretty excited.”
WBU Athletics Director Rick Cooper says he is “enthusiastic about what lies ahead for Wayland in the rapidly-growing world of esports, and he believes Sweeney is the right person to lead the Pioneers’ latest competitive program.”
Players will compete in Overwatch, Smite, and Super Smash Bros., and they plan to stage competitions once a week, online.
For more information about WBU Esports, contact esports coach Kevin Sweeney at [email protected].