Thinking About Adding an eSports League?
Four decades ago when Atari sponsored the first large-scale video game competition, hosting 10,000 participants, few could have imagined how the world of gaming would evolve. Today, many Clubs and Leagues in the youth sports space are expanding their membership and growing their organizations through eSports.
US Youth Soccer is hosting the Rise of Champions, which starts in February 2021. The tournament offers 11 weeks of training and competition followed by state and national championships. The promise of cash prizes, visibility to college recruiters and scholarships have enticed a large field of players.
There is growing support for eSport in schools and research that supports these programs as part of a well-rounded activities program. The High School eSports League has a community of more than 100,000 students and the advent of professional eSports has brought forth a long list of colleges and universities offering varsity level eSport competition, along with scholarship opportunities for elite gamers.
Demosphere partners Ohio Soccer Association and New York State West Youth Soccer (NYSW) recently launched eSports programs. NYSW pointed out that soccer simulation titles like FIFA and Pro Evolution Soccer are complementary to their program and provide kids with unique opportunities to learn and understand the game of soccer from a bird’s eye view. Organized eSports play can also encourage and develop principals including competitiveness, sportsmanship, teamwork, and communication.
Providing a safe environment for kids to interact, learn skills, grow as athletes and as people is important. By embracing the growth of the eSport market many Clubs and Leagues are offering their communities new and exciting ways to interact and develop as athletes, while also growing their organizations with a new revenue stream.