Ball State Debuts New Esports Center

Facility includes a 6-vs-6 space suited for competition and broadcast

Collegiate esports is a rapidly growing space and one of the schools looking to stay on the forefront of that growth is Ball State University.

On April 5, the university cut the ribbon on a brand new Esports Center on campus. The 3,611 square-foot facility will serve as the the home of the Ball State varsity esports program  and includes a production control room for live broadcast of esports events.

The space features a 6-vs-6 arena with seating for 50 spectators and an interactive classroom with 24 PCs. Alienware PCs power the 12 competition and 24 classroom seats.

“We have a lot of competitive goals,” says Ball State’s Director of Esports Dan Marino, “the biggest is establishing the culture, the teams, the rosters, and primarily doing that through recruitment both off campus with up-and-coming high school students, community college students, as well as our own Ball State Students. It’s about building the teams and then hopefully rolling that into a championship.”

From a live video production perspective, the space includes a control room powered by a Newtek Tricaster 2 Elite production switcher and Dante Audio infrastructure. Every PC in the facility and 12 webcams are networked via NDI to the Tricaster for production, along with three broadcast cameras. Announcers can the action on site through apair of Studio Technology Model 205 announcer consoles

The four-monitor array behind the stage delivers large screen presentations of every event in the space, and flexibility for remote broadcasting of esports.

“The Ball State Esports Center delivers an innovative experience to students interested in every aspect of esports, from gameplay to broadcast to event management,” says Alex Kartman, Director of Sports Production at Ball State Sports Link. “The most exciting part is that everyone can practice their passions in this facility.”

The Ball State Esports Center will host competitions and classes starting this fall. The university competes in the newly-formed Esports Collegiate Conference (ESC). The conference was founded in 2020 by the 12 Mid-American Conference institutions and has since expanded to include Northeastern University.

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