A group of former Call of Duty pros and upcoming amateurs — including CoD world champion Justin ‘SiLLy’ Fargo-Palmer — have enrolled at Bay State College to join the collegiate Call of Duty league with a full scholarship.
The CCL is widely regarded as the best place for top college CoD teams to compete, with players earning scholarships to get them through their education as well as making a bit of money for competing.
While it’s been a good place for upcoming talent to gain recognition, there has been some backlash as SiLLy’s team, complete with a former pro and several top AMs, is set to compete.
An announcement was made on December 14 that the squad would be competing in 2022 for Bay State, and it’s caused a stir online.
The squad that will be competing sees SiLLy alongside Timothy ‘Phantomz’ Landis (who previously competed for Evil Geniuses in Black Ops 4, as well as as a substitute for Paris Legion), Dillon ‘Wrecks’ Slotter, and Jacob ‘Druxy’ Eldridge.
CCL rules dictate that competitors must be full-time students at their respective colleges, so each of these players will be getting a fully-funded university education — but it’s caused some upset online.
Jukester on Reddit said that this is just a case of “top players coming in forming super teams and just finessing cash from college kids who are actually grinding.”
Over on Twitter, Azlo said that it “defeats the point” of the CCL.
Silly, Phantoms etc in the CCL now?! Doesn’t that defeat the point? idk
— CLG | Eli ‘Azlo’ Ridder (@AZLOCDL) December 15, 2021
Meanwhile, it looks like this might not be the last of the big CCL announcements. Another player who has competed in the CDL, Adam ‘GodRX’ Brown hinted that he might be willing to make the move — and this could point to more players following suit.
wait better than sitting in challengers with no orgs 🤷🏻♂️
— Adam (@GODRX) December 15, 2021
With Challengers players’ impatience towards the scene growing, the CCL could be the perfect outlet for players to compete while also getting an education for their future careers.
With a franchised league, collegiate esports could be the future when it comes to team recruitment, similar to leagues such as the NBA and NFL. Whether this works out in a similar way for Call of Duty, however, remains to be seen.