CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA (September 9, 2019) – The National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA), the national governing body of two-year college athletics, announced the creation of NJCAA Esports. This new Esports association will provide two-year colleges with governance, competition and official national championships while also providing guidance and positive development for two-year colleges to build and operate Esports programs.
NJCAA Esports, a strategic partnership between the NJCAA, Chicago-based Legacy Esports and New York-based EsportsU, a division of Collegiate Sports Management Group (CSMG), is the only national Esports association for two-year colleges. The association will develop rules and eligibility for student participation, in addition to competition schedules which would include online, LAN and national championship events.
"The growth trend of the Esports industry has given NJCAA member colleges a remarkable opportunity to create and manage programs, increase enrollment and retention and make a greater positive impact in their communities," said Dr. Christopher Parker, President and CEO of the NJCAA. "The NJCAA, with our partners Legacy Esports and EsportsU, is excited to embark on this historic endeavor to benefit two-year higher education."
NJCAA Esports, through Legacy Esports, will deliver to member colleges competition software, communication forum creation and moderation, competition administration (including bracketing, seeding, refereeing, and oversight), and dedicated account management. EsportsU will represent all commercial rights across media, sponsorship, sales, ticketing, e-commerce and advertising for NJCAA Esports.
"Legacy is excited to partner with the NJCAA and EsportsU to deliver competitive, structured, and meaningful competitions to two-year colleges across the country," said Andrew Barnett, CEO of Legacy Esports. "Legacy will power league structure and operational services for all regular season and championship events on our state-of-the-art competition platform."
"This ground-breaking partnership will allow brands to engage with college esports athletes, nationally and regionally, for online, LAN and national championship events," said Neil Malvone, EVP of Business Affairs and Strategic Partnerships at Collegiate Sports Management Group. "Tremendous sponsorship, digital marketing, and media opportunities will be available for brands in collegiate Esports."
To participate in NJCAA Esports, member colleges must be fully accredited by an authorized higher education accrediting agency and serve as a two-year institution. NJCAA Esports will also provide insight and guidance to two-year colleges interested in sponsoring Esports programs and joining the association. Competitions will begin in the fall of 2019 with the structure design created based on membership.