Redefining the College Athlete at Lackawanna College

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

SCRANTON, Pa. -- Lackawanna College in Scranton is looking to redefine what it means to be a college athlete. Soon, the college will start recruiting for its competitive gaming team also known as "eSports."

Lackawanna College is looking to field a new sports team that doesn't require a field at all. The college used a video to announce its new video gaming team, also known as eSports.

If you're scratching your head, Lackawanna College Athletic Director Julia Whittington says there was a time when she wouldn't have believed this either.

"Did I think that this day would come as an athlete? No. But understanding it and starting to dive into it has really opened my eyes to the strategy, the competition behind it, and it's very exciting," Whittington said.

The video gaming team will recruit and offer scholarships. Its members will be called athletes.

"I think they should be called athletes. They're playing a sport, playing it passionately, too, so it should be called athletics," said Lackawanna College baseball player J.C. Bonilla.

Members of the Lackawanna College baseball team don't mind sharing the title.

"The fact that they could actually get a scholarship and be able to get an education while doing what they like, it's an amazing opportunity for them," said Lackawanna College baseball player Sirwalter Melendez.

Instead of a field or an arena, the eSports team will have a gaming suite that will be somewhere on campus where they'll practice and play just like any other sports team.

"I heard of it, but I never thought of it becoming a sport, to a college, so this is a big surprise," said Lackawanna College baseball player Ciani Ballard.

Women's basketball point guard Ciani Ballard says she'll welcome the new student-athletes into the fold.

"I think it's smart. I honestly do. I feel like it's a big investment in the school, definitely for more exposure.

The Lackawanna Falcons gaming team starts its season this fall.