Esports catching on in Indiana

Esports, the global phenomenon of spectator video-game competition, is catching on in the Hoosier state. From high school and college competitions to large, corporate-sponsored tournaments, esports is growing in enthusiasm statewide.

Butler University and Ball State University have recently launched varsity programs, with many others sure to follow. Esports has been part of the club scene for some time, but colleges are beginning to see it as a recruitment tool, with many hosting summer camps for teens. With the COVID-19 pandemic shutting down a lot of traditional sports, esports is having a moment. Pacers Gaming, the Indiana Pacers esports team in the NBA 2K league, has gained fans both inside and outside the Hoosier state, thanks in part to coverage on ESPN2.

Now esports is getting its own major tournament in Indiana, the Esports Combine Indianapolis. The event, slated to take place at the Indiana Convention Center September 25-27, will feature six large tournaments, educational training sessions, and a college league showcase.