ESports to Make an Appearance in Central Hardin’s Repertoire of Teams

Maggie Phelps, Writer, Editor-in-Chief

ESports, short for electronic sports, is a field of competitive video gaming that has been rising in popularity over recent years. Many higher education institutions,  including University of Kentucky and Murray State University, have a respectable ESports team and program that many students find themselves getting involved in. 

Art teacher Antonio Menendez is bringing ESports into the halls of Central Hardin. 

“We’ve been wanting to do this for a few years, but the state sanctioned it this year making it a high school sport,” Menendez said. “That’s what got the ball rolling.”

ESports provides an outlet for students that couldn’t find a niche in traditional sports, and contrary to popular assumption, ESports is not a school club, but rather a recognized sports team. 

Menendez explains that ESports have the same requirements as any other sport. Students need to be in good standing, must maintain a 2.5 GPA, and be passing all their classes.

“We’re reaching a different set of kids who maybe have never had to meet those expectations, now if they want to be on a team, they have to meet those expectations.”

The team will begin competing around early December with a variety of games to showcase. 

Members have the capability to play on Playstation 4, Playstation 5, Nintendo Switch, and PC. Games that are sanctioned by the state include: Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, NBA 2K, Earth Stone, League of Legends, and much more, Menendez said.

Menendez invisions the team growing into a designated space after the renovation on the school is complete. Upon the creation of the new media center, ESports will have a room set up with equipment perfect for after school practice and rehearsal before competition. 

Scholarship opportunities are also available for students on the team. 

“Most state universities have an ESports team, depending on which game they get really good at, they only take the best of the best,” Menendez said. “I know UofL has a full ride [scholarship] for ESports.”

For students interested in joining the team, posters are placed around the school with a QR-Code that you can scan to join the Google Classroom, and questions can be directed to [email protected]