College Kids With Full Ride Scholarships From Playing Video Games?

Video games have become a common pastime for those all around the world, but especially high school and college kids. Most parents would discourage the use of video games because they are a waste of time. What if they weren’t a waste of time?

Michael Udall is a 22-year-old college student who plays a game called “Heroes of the Storm” a multiplayer battle arena game where people take the most popular heroes from games made by Blizzard Entertainment and fight each other. Michael Started doing tournaments for the game back in 2015 and participated in Heroes of the Storm’s first “Heroes of the Dorm.” A collegiate tournament that would give a full ride scholarship to the entire team who won. Michael Udall’s team from Arizona State University faced teams from all over the world including a team from Harvard, a team from Cornell and over 100 other teams. Michael’s team won this tournament and him and his team currently have their school paid for because of a video game.

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We like to talk about Michael Udall because it wasn’t just a scholarship for him, but after he won Heroes of the Dorm, he was then picked up by a professional team who paid him a salary to play this game. From this team, he won his first professional tournament in 2016 netting him $250,000. This year Michael Udall was picked up by another esports organization called “Endemic” which is owned and sponsored by Paul George, a 5 time NBA All-Star. This isn’t just a fun game for Udall, this is now his life. It paid for his school and now it’s a career. E-Sports maybe just in their infancy but they are certainly worth watching out for.

Heroes of the Dorm is starting up again at the end of this year and many universities are taking it seriously with professors volunteering as coaches. Other schools are hiring out professional players to coach their teams. NotParadox is currently coaching Harvard university’s team which has been practicing all year for the 2018-2019 Heroes of the Dorm tournament. Many E-Sport tournaments frequently get more viewers than even WNBA or PGA Championships.

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One thought on “College Kids With Full Ride Scholarships From Playing Video Games?

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  1. It is interesting to see that an ivy league college is participating in E-sports. When one thinks of Harvard the last thing we would think of is video game tournaments. On the topic of E-sports as a whole though, they are going through a strange moment in time right now; with arguments arising of whether they count as sports or not, the toxicity of the fans, and the toxicity/sportsmanship of the players. Since many of the professionals stream outside of sanctioned tournaments, the world watches them closely to see how they are represented outside the matches. We’ve seen this happen several times with the Overwatch League (OWL) and it causing concerns about the future of OWL, and that could impact other games as well including Heroes of the Storm and League of Legends. While people are starting to make a living playing games and earning the money they work for, I think it will take more time to full smooth out the role of E-sports.

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