GLENVILLE, W.Va. – There are a lot of college students who spend their time playing sports video games, like Madden and many others.
But, for Pioneer esports at Glenville State College, it’s not just a pastime, it’s a competition, and one in which they’re excelling. A Madden player at GSC is one game away from a national championship in the new program’s first year of competition.
“Us being a first-year program, we didn’t have necessarily the highest expectation, but I still put a lot of expectations on the players to get better each week, and the fact that we’re reaching the national championship as a first-year program is phenomenal,” said GSC esports Coordinator Logan Harrison.
GSC and many other esports programs in the area compete through the National Association for Collegiate esports, but there’s not a scene for every game out there just yet. That doesn’t mean, however, that they’re not ready for the moment when the competition is also ready.
“Some of them will compete in weekend tournaments, they’ll compete in weekly tournaments that we have, or just random pop-up tournaments just to get that playstyle in, get that gaming in, so if we are presented with a big-time opportunity, we’re already ready for that,” Harrison said.
The NACE Finals for Madden will take place next week, and it’ll be a battle of the top two seeds to see who wins. Either way, though, it could put Glenville State on the map in a big way.
“I think that us having this level of success early is going to put us at a bit of a higher standard, but it’s also going to give us the opportunity to reach people we may not have been able to reach prior to this,” said Harrison.