ATLANTA (Aug. 11, 2021) – Cxmmunity, a nonprofit whose mission is to increase diversity in the esports and video game industries, and Twitch unveiled their plans for the second season of its HBCU Esports League. The league aims to help students gain access to educational and scholarship support, offered through Twitch Student, and help Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) bolster their esports programs.
The 22-week schedule to be aired on Twitch.tv/cxmmunity will begin on Aug. 18, 2021 at 7:00 PM EST, and conclude on April 6, 2022, featuring 25 HBCUs who will compete in Madden and NBA2K.
“We’re incredibly proud to bring the HBCU Esports League back for its second season with the support of Twitch, Verizon, and Discover,” said Ryan Johnson, co-founder and executive director for Cxmmunity. “This will continue building competition and galvanizing the community across our partner colleges and universities.”
“While 83% of Black teens play video games, opportunities are scarce for them to pursue careers in gaming, esports, and STEM when they enroll in college. We hope our Esports League will further their passion and desire to engage in these areas as they navigate their academic journeys at their respective schools,” remarked Johnson.
The participating HBCUs include Alabama A&M University, Claflin University, Clark Atlanta University, Coppin State University, Delaware State University, Fayetteville State University, Fort Valley State University, Hampton University, Howard University, Johnson C. Smith University, Langston University, Morehouse College, Morgan State University, Morris Brown College, Norfolk State University, North Carolina A&T State University, North Carolina Central University, Oakwood University, Shaw University, South Carolina State University, Southern University, Tennessee State University, University of Maryland-Eastern Shore and Wilberforce University.
Verizon Returns as Sponsor
Verizon returns as a season partner, which includes its owned branded segment and a Celebrity Pro-Am Tournament to be determined in the coming weeks. The event will feature professional athletes, entertainers and content creators who will compete with select HBCU students. In June, Verizon announced that it had committed $1 million to increase female representation in gaming and STEM through the creation of the Verizon Game Forward Scholarship for female students at HBCUs; and the creation of tech centers on the campuses to benefit these students. The program is being facilitated by Cxmmunity.
Discover Joins Cxmmunity to Present the “Discover Bowl”
Discover, one of the most recognizable brands in financial services joins the season as a new partner and will present the first-ever “Discover Bowl,” a Madden tournament to be held during the college football bowl season.
Along with the “Discover Bowl,” Discover will also sponsor its own branded segment, “Discover’s Cxmmunity Leader of the Week.” The feature will highlight an HBCU student achieving exceptional accomplishments both on and off-campus.
“By partnering with Cxmmunity and Twitch to support the HBCU 2021 Esports League, Discover is committing to Cxmmunity’s mission of increasing the participation and representation of young minorities within the esports and video game industries. This partnership also allows Discover to continue to engage with college students and provide them with the products and knowledge to encourage financially responsible habits,” said Kate Manfred, Chief Marketing Officer at Discover. “We look forward to highlighting Cxmmunity student leaders’ every week, and culminating the season at the ‘Discover Bowl.’”
Inaugural Season Successes
In the inaugural season of HBCU Esports League in 2020:
22 students from 18 participating schools competed with students from Fayetteville State University and Claflin University, winning the championships.
Captured more than 14 million live views on Twitch.
Produced over 600,000 hours of viewed HBCU Esports League content.
Garnered 15,000 average concurrent viewers with 32,000 maximum concurrent viewers.
Cxmmunity also built two esports labs at Oakwood University and North Carolina Central University. Cxmmunity is currently working with Verizon to open additional esports labs at Delaware State University, Dillard University, Howard University, Morgan State University and Texas Southern University.