The NCAA and The Possibility of Joining E-Sports

Media by Justin Cross

A question that comes to people’s minds is does the NCAA have anything to do with E-Sports? The answer is no and most people never really have thought about it like that. Most colleges have an E-Sports team or are considering adding an E-Sports team. There has been a significant increase in schools considering adding E-Sports.

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The NCAA stands for the National Collegiate Athletic Association. The NCAA has twenty-four different sports that athletes can compete in. One of those isn’t E-Sports and are various reasons behind it not being a part of the NCAA. One reason that has been talked about is the copyrights that video games have. The NCAA would have to make deals with the gaming companies, which there would be many deals that would have to be made. If not the NCAA would have to make its own video games, which would cost a lot of money and time that the NCAA necessarily has. In the end, it’s going to cost more money than they would potentially make back from this process. The amount of money spent to host events for E-Sports wouldn’t make a break-even point for the NCAA and would spend more money in an E-Sports season than they would even make back. In the end, it would waste time for the NCAA to put money into E-Sports unless they would somehow be able to put on a major tournament at the end of a season. The possibility of making a major tournament like the NCAA basketball tournament, which brings in plenty of money. Thinking of various ways to get sponsorships and viewers is a possibility. Reaching the right crowd could make this possible, but the NCAA would have to come up with numerous ways to set that up.

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Another thing that comes into play is the violence in some of the games that are played. Shooting games where there are characters who are killed and blood shown is the main issue. Games like Fortnite, Apex Legends, and Call of Duty would fall into that category. The image of the NCAA would be put in jeopardy if they would allow this. The way around it would be having games with no violence like NBA 2K, Madden, Smash Bros, or others like it with no violence. The third problem that the NCAA runs into is that the number of men who are involved in E-Sports compared to women is a major gap. The NCAA, like the violence issue, is worried about their image and what they stand for. Title IX comes into play and would be a major issue with not many women being involved in E-Sports. Even though there are some women involved in E-Sports the drastic number compared to men is something that the NCAA is worried about. There have been various Title IX complications that have come up over recent years in other sports. This would be a case where it could hurt the image of the NCAA and what they stand for. A current E-Sports player Austin Ricketts gives his thoughts on this topic. “I think it would be nice and interesting if they decided to go this route.” Ricketts believes that it will make a major jump in how E-Sports would operate. Even after a long process it would be interesting and make E-Sports make a major leap.

A number of things will have to happen for this to become set in stone. It seems like it could be a few years until we could see the NCAA and E-Sports joined together. Only time will tell if this will end up happening but still seems like it is still an afterthought at the moment.

Media by Justin Cross.


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