On August 8, the NCDA teamed up with the Dodgeball Club at UW-Platteville to host the league’s first ever Rocket League tournament. Rocket League is a fast-paced, exciting online video game featuring remote control cars with special abilities whose goal is to push a larger-than-life soccer ball into the opponent’s net as many times as possible in a given time limit. This event raised money to go towards the Tim Ebert Memorial Scholarship, which goes to help the NCDA’s internship program. The goal of the event was to raise $500 and I’m excited to announce that we raised over $750 through entry fees and donations.
The NCDA teamed up with current players: JT Warren (UWP), Jacob Sebranek (UWP),Caleb Frank (CMU & NCDA intern) and myself to host this competition. This tournament consisted of 9 teams that went head to head to be crowned champions. We started with a round robin tournament followed by a double elimination bracket, and the games were live-streamed for everyone to be a part of the experience. Teams consisted of current and former players from the league. Some of these schools included: UWP, VCU, and WKU. In the end, a team from WKU took home the title as the NCDA’s first ever rocket league champions. There was no one more excited about this than Felix Perrone (WKU alumni). As his response to the victory of his former teammates was, “WKU wins their first championship tonight”! A very much deserved win for sure!
The following are the thoughts and responses from the individuals that help in carrying out this tournament.
Jacob Sebranek (UWP)– I had never heard of Rocket League before this tournament was put together. I didn’t know what to expect. However, I thought the tournament was a huge hit and it was amazing to see just how many incredible and talented players there were. I would also like to say “thank you” to all the people who donated. For those of you who don’t know, this tournament was in memory of Tim Ebert, who was a captain of UW-Platteville. Tim was a pillar of his community and it was a privilege to have played one season with him. Hopefully, the success of this tournament can lead to many more.
JT Warren (UWP)– I honestly did not know what to expect from this tournament, but I was amazed at how well the tournament went the first go around. Caleb did a fantastic job commentating, while Erik and Jacob helped more than most people know behind the scenes to keep things running smoothly. For me, commentating might not have been the best, but it was made easier with the level of competition the teams in the tournament brought. My biggest fear coming in was the skill gap the game provides, but all the players seemed to be on top of their game. The tournament was incredible with the all the players making amazing plays, while Caleb was making amazing calls throughout his stream. All in all, I think this tournament was a huge success and passed expectations by just about everyone. I definitely look forward to doing this tournament next year.
Caleb Frank (CMU)– It was an exciting experience to be able to broadcast the Rocket League Tournament. As a Broadcasting major, getting any experience in broadcasting sports is definitely exciting and will help me in the future. I had never played rocket league before so it was a neat experience to learn about another video game. Without having tournaments in person, it was nice to interact with current and former NCDA members and I am grateful for the opportunity. I am looking forward to the next tournament we will able to do.
Erik Zander (UWP)– This year we were going to host the second annual Tim Ebert dodgeball tournament, but with everything going on, we decided to go a different route to raise funds for the scholarship. In discussing it with JT, we came to a conclusion that putting on a rocket league tournament would be a great option. It turned out to be an excellent way to raise money,was a lot of fun, and great learning experience. Another benefit of hosting this tournament was that it allowed our league’s intern Caleb, to get some valuable experience commentating as he is majoring in broadcasting. It allowed Caleb to develop his skills and do something he has not done before. When I created the internship program a few years ago, this is what I was hoping it would accomplish.
Final Thoughts– This was an enjoyable event that I was glad that we were able to put on. A lot of the competitors had fun and said they would be back next year. For me, I enjoyed working with JT, Caleb, and Jacob and cannot thank them enough for their support and help with this tournament. It could not have been done without them, keep up the good work! I would also like to thank all the teams that participated and followed our guidelines that ultimately allowed us to run a smooth tournament. Finally, I would also like to thank all the individuals who donated throughout the event to help us surpass our goal. It meant a lot to me and I know that it means a lot to Tim’s family. Everyone please stay safe out there and remember to check out our website to keep up to date on what is happening in the league.