When asked to characterize the new sport after which his organization is named, the founder and president of eSports Ohio, Nick Rider, offered a multi-layered response.


"Competitive gaming is esports." According to Nick Rider, this activity, which is becoming more popular in schools throughout Ohio, is "basically what it is, but it's so much more than that." Everything from making PCs run faster to set up a Wi-Fi connection to allow gamers to play at their peak performance falls under this category. "Soft skills," such as communication and personal development, that kids also gain are what make esports grow.

Athletes and STEM are insanely large. It's amazing how big it is, as one can access the best Ohio online sportsbook promos too. Traditional sports are blown out of the water and their possibilities by this new technology. Many colleges, universities, and even school districts have created their own esports teams so that students may represent their institutions and finally have an outlet for their passion for video games, thanks to the recent spike in worldwide interest in video games and competitive video gaming.

What Sparked the Rise of Competitive Gaming?


Initially developed in college laboratories in the 1950s and 1960s, the first home video game systems and games were widely accessible to the general public in the 1970s. In 1980, more than 10,000 people participated in a Space Invaders Championship, the first large-scale US video game championship, as the variety of games and public interest grew over time.

Professional teams and a few institutions now field teams in competitive gaming and provide financial aid to students who choose to participate. In addition to college students, numerous school districts have shown an interest in these grants.

There are now esports teams at schools in the District of Columbia and 17 states throughout the United States. Each team has different standards, dates, and games, but they all enable their teams to participate against other esports teams.

In Northeast Ohio, Esports Is a Reality

According to Rider, the sport's popularity has grown since he started his organization in 2018 with 16 teams, although the size, kind, and degree of experience of each squad differs from school to school. According to eSports Ohio's website, there are over 100 registered schools and seven games. Rocket League, Fortnite, Overwatch, Super Smash Bros., Smite, Valorant, and League of Legends are just a few of the many titles on this list.

Seven school districts in Ohio's Ashland, Holmes, and Wayne counties have eSports Ohio-registered teams. It's still the first season for several schools like Wooster High and Hiland High, which are just getting started with sports.

For the first time since Logan Brown introduced the concept of a team at Wooster in 2013, the Board of Education accepted the notion in September of that year with the support of social studies teacher Bryan Ehrlinspiel. A group of around 50 kids attended the team's first informative meeting recently after the autumn season had already concluded.

Ashland City, Triway Local, and New London Local school districts all have esports teams that have been in existence for a few years. New London's first esports season started three years ago. Since then, the squad has grown over the years, and there are currently roughly 15 students in the high school and middle school groups. The Triway Local Rocket League squad was formed in the spring of 2019 and currently consists of eight varsity players.

Offering Esports Has Many Advantages


A growing number of esports teams are now offering scholarships for their players, which not only attracts more people to a college but can also be the ticket that gets a kid into a college. Esports and multimedia creation and broadcasting have sparked interest in Tiffin University from students who previously had no intention of attending the school.

While some kids may not otherwise have an outlet at school because of esports, we believe that it provides one. A new generation of students has emerged who had nothing to call their own in school prior to the advent of esports.

How to Establish an eSports Team?

In order to determine if an esports team would be well-received, we suggest surveying the student population. Once that is done, make sure they have a coach and the school administration behind them.

Students, parents, and coaches should know that you're not simply a warm body in a classroom allowing youngsters to do their thing. Esports may be just as competitive as regular sports if they're constructed correctly, and you're in charge of managing a program that helps kids improve their talents.

eSports Ohio provides players and coaches with a number of helpful tools. In contrast to other teams, Wooster's team relies on other teams in their community for advice and guidance. No matter how a team is formed, how large it develops, or how much financing is available, the most important thing to remember is that each school's path is unique and should reflect what is best for the school.

This is not a 'one size fits all situation. Anything goes; if you want a fiercely competitive varsity program, go ahead and do it. As long as you wish to play on a regular basis as a club, eSports Ohio can accommodate that.

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