Esports Club looks to level up with new members, leagues

Video games, competitions and lots of fun.

The Detroit Mercy Esports Club, now in its second year on campus, is growing rapidly and has big plans for the future.

What started out in Junior Computer Science major Logan Manor’s bedroom in 2020 at the height of the coronavirus pandemic has now turned into a lively organization with nearly 70 members. The Varsity News spoke to Manor, who has served as club president ever since founding it two years ago, to learn more about the group, its current events and its future goals.

“Esports is a growing topic and has been on the rise [for] the past few years,” he said. “We needed something to bring more students to the university.”

The club hosts gaming competitions and other events periodically on campus. Most recently, it joined the university’s Fitness Center in cel- ebrating its 10th birthday by hosting an in-person “Super Smash Brothers: Ultimate” tournament.

Dozens of students joined to compete and spectate at a video game truck supplied by Motor City Gamers. William Vallespir, the first-place finisher, won a new gaming chair.

The club is also inching its way into the competitive realm of esports. Right now, the club only has one professional team: a “Beat Saber” trio which exclusively competes in the Collegiate Virtual Reality Esports League (CVRE) and duels other colleges and universities around the country. However, the plan is to continue expanding the club’s competitive operations.

As for the future, Manor told The VN he wants to make Detroit Mercy’s Esports Club more than just a club. He wants to elevate it to a full-blown esports program that competes on a national level.

“We will become a full scale esports program especially with the support that I have been receiving from the staff,” Manor told The VN. “There has been a lot of changes just over the course of this fall and we are only progressing forward.”

But despite the support and extensive efforts from Manor and other club board members, he admitted that it will take a long time to reach such a point.

“I can [imagine] the club growing fairly slowly since to grow we need more students coming to Detroit Mercy that are interested in esports,” he said. “The main goal for [the] esports club is to help others find what they love to do and compete at the highest level against other universities.”

There are no intentions to stop expansion efforts.

As the esports industry grows— recording peak interest in 2021 and still increasing today—Manor hopes to create an environment that brings students of similar interests together and boosts student life on campus.

Michigan is home to some of the best collegiate esports programs in the nation; just a drive away sit the campuses of Northwood University, Davenport University and Michigan State University, all of which have built massively successful esports programs in terms of competitiveness, content creation and career opportunities.

Students who formerly competed under a Michigan collegiate esports program have gone on to join the likes of Cloud9 Esports, one of the world’s leading esports organizations with multiple titles and millions of social media followers.

Detroit Mercy wants to be just that and better. Indeed, not everyone can be a professional player, but the club is here to help members and non-members alike find something they enjoy doing.

Whether you’re there for the resume, for the tournaments, or for the fun, the Esports Club is always welcoming new members.

The club, which is now active on Instagram and Twitter @ detmercyesports, plans to hold an intramural tournament in the near future. Details will be shared as they are learned, so anyone interested in following up can do so through the social media pages and the club’s Discord server.