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Video #Gaming an Interscholastic #sport?

Updated: Friday, January 16 2015, 07:40 PM EST Rochester, N.Y. – As the popularity of video games grows – a local man is launching an effort to make gaming an interscholastic sport. A pre-game warm up may not consist of overhead stretches or bends, but discussions of strategies as the organization members get their heads in the game League of Legends. “I can try and roam a little bit to put some pressure on the map to try and get people to deal with me to alleviate you guys,” says Mike Lyle, EGF’s broadcaster and RIT alum. Tyler Schrodt founded the Electronic Gaming Federation back in August. “It’s something that I’ve done kind of all of my life; I got into competitive e-sports, since I was about 12,” Schrodt said. He now hopes to recruit other colleges to compete. Ideally, Schrodt would like a college league for video gamers just like the NCAA does for other sports. “With all the success in the professional environment, I thought that it was time that a college league existed,” Schrodt says. “The gamer community, it’s something that you wouldn’t actively find — you just kind of plop into it,” says RIT physics major, Kaitlin Schmidt.  This is her first time playing League of Legends, but has been into games since a teenager. “It’s fun and it’s intense.” Josh Roberts, the federation’s media producer, says he’s been playing video games since he “was in diapers.” His position on this electronic field: support. “Like either healing or vision, whatever is necessary [in] making sure the team knows where the other team is – calling things out,” Roberts says. The division has two live play-by-play broadcasts as well as edited versions on YouTube. So far – Georgia College has signed on. “One of our major goals is eventually get to the point where we have the same environment like the NCAA has, the NFL, NHL – where we provide the league that feeds the pro leagues,” says Schrodt. But the division is looking for more. “It’s a way to be a part of a community that is pretty unique, and that you don’t see many other places,” Schmidt says. The Electronic Gaming Federation hopes to travel to different colleges to compete as soon as this year. There’s no telling when – or if – a formal league will form or gain recognition from the NCAA or other associations.

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