What is Esports and Why Lipscomb?
Esports is a team of students competing in a specific game against another team of students, but it is also an opportunity for students to build community, experience the values of discipline and teamwork, practice sportsmanship, and enjoy competition in a Christian atmosphere. Esports is one of the fastest growing sports among schools with over $16 million in scholarships offered by colleges in 2020 alone. With very few schools in the area having established esports teams, Lipscomb seeks to be on the cutting edge of affording these opportunities to students.
Structure and Design
Lipscomb Academy esports is divided into two divisions. The Middle School Division is coached and led by Noel Hicks, academy band director. Grades 6-8 are allowed to participate, but only students 13 years of age and older can compete in officially sanctioned events. The games competed in will be Smash Brothers for Nintendo Switch (ESRB 10+) and Rocket League (ESRB E).
The High School Division is coached by in-house esports veterans, Tyler Mason and Jeff Odom, both academy information technology staff. Games competed in include Overwatch (ESRB T), Super Smash Brothers on Nintendo Switch (ESRB 10+), Rocket League (ESRB E), and Chess. Coaching chess this year will be Grant Parker, academy chapel director.
An explanation of ESRB ratings for games can be found at https://www.esrb.org/.
For both teams, tryouts will be held prior to the beginning of the season. Up to 12 players for each game will be selected by coaches for a total potential roster of 24 players at the middle school level and 36 at the high school level. The exception to this is chess, which will host up to 15 players across middle and high school with high school participants given preference. Please note that currently, only high school players can compete in sanctioned ERB chess matches.
Schedule and Practice
All practices and most competitions will take place in room 137 in Harding Hall. Practices begin promptly at 3:30 and end at 5:00. Competitions will be communicated as the season progresses.
Monday/Thursday- high school division
Tuesday/Friday- middle school division
During practice participants will:
Watch instructional videos or gameplay footage to learn new moves and address gameplay improvements
Practice new moves independently and with partners
Scrimmage partners using new moves as much as possible
Play and record results of games in order to determine ranking
Season Schedules (detailed schedules of matches and opponents will be provided by coaches once the season begins.)
Uniforms and Fees
Uniforms will be available for purchase after the start of the season. Parents will be notified by coaches with information on how to purchase them. Uniforms are to be worn at all practices and competitions and may be worn on spirit wear days in order to show team spirit. Failure to wear a uniform on competition days may result in replacement for that competition. Fees are due the week after tryouts and total $150 for high school participants and $140 for middle school participants. Fees cover entry costs into EGF league tournaments as well as uniform costs.
Team Rules and Expectations
Esports is treated and run much like any other traditional sports program in which students are expected to adhere to behavioral and academic expectations. All rules and protocols that govern a standard school day also apply to after school activities.
Honor Christ in word and deed.
Speak respectfully to teammates, opponents, and coaches.
No raging or quitting out of frustration. Control your emotions and persevere.
Give 100% in every practice and competition.
No food or drink beyond the coach's table.
Clean and store all equipment before leaving.
Communicate in advance with coaches if you cannot make practices.
Goals for Esports
To learn about the competitive world of gaming in a fun, friendly, and Christian environment
To connect and build friendships among students who share the same enthusiasm for gaming
To teach students the joy of success that comes from practice, dedication, and teamwork
To provide potential avenues for scholarships and career opportunities related to esports for students
To represent Christ well