by Jostin Blanco, Staff Writer
Bergen has decided to participate in esports for the spring 2021 semester, as a return to athletics seems uncertain.
Students will be able to compete in Heartstone on PC/Mobile, Smash Brothers on Nintendo Switch, NBA 2K21 on PlayStation 4, Madden on cross platforms and FIFA 21 on PlayStation 4.
There will be a regular season followed by single bracket playoffs and championship games. Students will use the Generationsesports.com platform to compete with other colleges across the country while playing from home. At this time, there is no information on how teams and schedules will be determined.
According to the Bergen Bulldogs website, students who are in good academic standing are able to register for this upcoming season, set to begin in March. Students must be registered for the spring semester and sign a letter of intent to be able to participate.
The Athletic Department is currently in talks with the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) to make preparations for physical sports to return for the spring. However, no definitive plans have been made, and there is no certainty of resuming next semester, according to Athletic Director Jorge Hernandez.
Esports is not a new concept and has been around since 1972, when a Space Invaders tournament gained 10,000 participants. The world of esports has become increasingly popular over the years, with events selling out arenas all over the world and gaining millions of live viewers.
In recent years, colleges around the country have started to incorporate esports, with some colleges now offering scholarships. Rutgers currently has nearly a thousand members and participated in ESPN-covered events.