SPSCC starts esports varsity team


South Puget Sound Community College (SPSCC) has formed an esports varsity team, the first of its kind in Thurston County.

In an SPSCC press release, the Clipper eSports team will be coached by competitive gamer Michael Nguyen, who was Global Elite Rank, top one percent, in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive when he played for Western Washington University.

“Just like traditional sports, you have the NCAA going into the professional league,” explained Nguyen in a video, “so now we have the collegiate level of esports hopefully building that pipeline into the professional scene.”

According to the school website, recruitment is ongoing, with students able to earn scholarships through leagues and tournaments. The team is set to compete in the fall of 2022.

SPSCC will also have an esports facility for the team, with 13 PCs and two Nintendo Switches for games like Halo, Valorant, Overwatch, Super Smash Bros, League of Legends, and more.

Nguyen, a gamer since high school, also plans to hold summer camps for middle and high school players and visiting international students.

Esports is an emerging phenomenon, with Reuters reporting revenues of around $1.1 billion globally. A study published in The Sport Journal discusses how esports is inclusive, with factors that otherwise affect traditional sports becoming irrelevant: such as sex, race, and physical disability.

“We’re really looking to include everyone and introduce esports as an opportunity anyone can pursue,” said Nguyen in the school’s statement.

SPSCC students interested in joining the team can click here for more information.


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