Due to the increasing statistics surrounding the coronavirus (COVID-19), University of Louisiana at Lafayette Director of Athletics Bryan Maggard, Ph.D., made the difficult decision to indefinitely suspend all spring 2020 sporting events on March 12.
While all NCAA sporting events remained cancelled, Bourgeois Hall remained open and intramural and recreation sports still continued.
On Sunday, March 15, UL Lafayette took precautionary measures for the coronavirus. They gave notice to all players, coaches and staff that any games being held on March 16 and March 17 would be canceled, however, games held on March 18 and March 19 would remain and be played as scheduled.
Although this plan was intended to stay in place, for the time being, Bourgeois Hall was closed indefinitely on March 16, 2020, with all programming, recreational activities and intramurals being suspended.
Although this news was upsetting, UL Lafayette’s recreational sports decided to hold multiple esports leagues for the rest of the semester.
Esports leagues will give students the ability to continue participating in an activity other than school. These games promote the newly enforced stay-at-home mandate while giving students the opportunity to be competitive and stay connected with others.
Esports registration for “Madden 20,” “NHL 20,” “NBA 2k20” and “FIFA 20” closed on March 22, 2020, at midnight. Logistics for how the leagues run were sent to everyone through IMLeagues. Everyone is guaranteed two matchups per week. Times to play these games are decided among the opponents. At the end of the three-week season, there will be a double-elimination tournament to decide who the champion of each league is.
The response to the course of action was positive, so RecSports decided to offer a few new games to the original list. These games include “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare,” “Rocket League,” “Fortnite,” “Call of Duty: Warzone” and an “Apex Legends” 3v3 Tournament.
All of these games can be played from an Xbox One, PS4 or PC. “Rocket League,” however, is now available through Nintendo Switch.
The Apex Legends 3v3 tournament will be held on April 2 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., with “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare” (2v2 and 6v6) and “Rocket League” (2v2 and 3v3) games to follow on April 6. The one-day “Fortnite” duos tournament will be held April 21 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. One April 22 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. there will be the three-person “Call of Duty:Warzone” tournament, and “Fortnite” squads will be held at the same time on April 23.
Although the future of UL Lafayette sports remains uncertain, UL Lafayette is working with the Louisiana Office of Public Health and following guidelines and rules to ensure that everyone and their families stay healthy.