New e-Sports League Coming To West Virginia
A significant movement is coming to West Virginia in the next few months, and the combination of e-Sports and sports betting might be in play. The West Virginia Career and Technical Education office will launch an e-Sports pilot program that will have 16 schools participating in an e-Sports league. e-Sport athletes would be held to the same standard of conduct as any other athlete.
Right now betting pools on e-sports tournaments are allowed in different states when betting is legal, but this would be a game changer. With the e-Sports league running in a state with legal gambling, betting odds, futures, parlay, prop bets and the rest of betting options will open up for the rest of the e-Sports betting fanatics. Some of the benefits for the partnering schools include entrance to tournaments, sponsored LAN parties, and Twitch.tv broadcasting opportunities. West Virginia Wesleyan College is offering the state’s first varsity e-sports program. There are around 70 other collegiate organizations with e-sports programs across the country.
Women Watching e-Sports Growing Faster Than Men
The e-Sports audiences have been growing quickly over the past two years, but a study by Interpret shows women are getting more into e-sports over the last couple of years. The research shows women are not only playing games but watching and getting deep into the culture. “Changing behaviors among a large segment of people is difficult. Progress of this size always takes time; however, a 6.5% gain in gender share over a two-year period is a trend in the right direction.
If two years from now, females grab an additional 6% in share, eSports viewership will be in gender split parity with what we consider standard among traditional console and PC games. As an industry, more progress will be made as females’ role in traditional eSports titles continue to grow, given the efforts from some of the industry leaders. More likely than not, a lot of that growth may come in non-traditional eSport genres, and especially games tailored to mobile and tablet devices”, said Tia Christianson, VP of Research (EMEA), Interpret.
Of those that play games considered an e-Sport on Console/PC, only 35% are female. The number is not massive, but it is good enough. Of those that watch eSports regularly, 30% are women. According to Skillz 7 of the top 10 mobile earners on their platform in 2018 were female. Skillz is an online mobile multiplayer competition platform that is integrated into several iOS and Android games.