Imagine a sports announcer on the sideline: “And starting for the Immaculata Mighty Macs are Ganon Main, Zelda Main, Links Main, Plant Main, and Cloud Main.”
Don’t be confused by these unusual names. Student-athletes are using the names during their competition on the Immaculata Smash Brothers team.
Welcome to the inaugural season for the university’s Esports program.
Esports are team-based video game competitions watched in person or online by spectators. Immaculata will stream the matches online for viewing and players will compete individually and as a team.
Finding players to field multiple rosters and to play at a competitive level are Sean Dwyer’s goal for the first season of Immaculata’s Esports program. As the program’s first coach, he recognizes that there is a need to engage the campus community. With more than 15 members on the two Immaculata teams, Smash Brothers and Rocket League, Dwyer has already begun virtual team practices and is ready to start the season in late September. The Mighty Macs are members of the National Association of Collegiate Esports and compete in the East Coast Conference.
Just because this is the first year of Immaculata’s Esports program doesn’t mean there is a lack of confidence.
“My goal for the upcoming season is to show that the IU Esports teams mean business, with a bank account and an LLC!” said Cameron Quinn, a business major. “I think I speak for the whole team when I say that we want to bring home first place.”
The decision to play on IU’s Esports teams gave Quinn an opportunity to combine his two favorite hobbies: sports and video games. He has been playing since his 10th birthday when his dad bought him an Xbox.
“Esports gave my competitive drive the perfect outlet to thrive in, even during the offseason,” said Quinn, who is also active in Immaculata’s theater productions.
Like the university’s other traditional sports teams, Esports players are often recruited to play, wear team jerseys, hold practice, and participate in a regular training and fitness regimen. However, their “home field” is a little different from the other sports.
Located at the terrace level of the Lettiere Center, the Mighty Macs ESports Arena has 10 state-of-the-art gaming setups. Each gaming area has an iCUE 220T RGB airflow tempered glass mid-tower smart case, ASUS 27-inch WQHD LED gaming LCD monitor, Corsair K55 RGB gaming keyboard, HyerX CloudII headset, and a Logitech HD PRO webcam for streaming purposes. The arena also houses a lounge area with leather couches and a flat-screen TV for leisure and film review. Currently, the team is practicing remotely.
For Dwyer, he views the new teams as an opportunity to show Esports’ potential for competition, inclusion, and personal growth. He believes that Esports will become a mainstay form of entertainment and competition, a fixture on college campuses and at high schools around the world.
Quinn shares his coach’s viewpoint on the explosive growth of Esports in the future, and he is appreciative of Immaculata’s support for the new athletic program, including the new arena.
“There is more to Esports than just being good at video games,” Quinn said. “Without support from universities like Immaculata, Esports wouldn’t make it off the ground.”
Click here to learn more about Esports at Immaculata University.
You Might Also Like