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Parker McCollum

Fayetteville’s Seth Thomas rotates to collegiate Rocket League after signing e-sports scholarship with Huntingdon


FAYETTEVILLE, Ala. – Seth Thomas, a senior at Fayetteville High School, has shattered stereotypes by securing an e-sports scholarship to play Rocket League at Huntingdon College in Montgomery.

Seth’s path to Rocket League greatness is a pioneering move that could pave the way for future e-sports competitors.

The signing, a first-ever for Fayetteville High, marks another milestone in the acceptance of e-sports as a legitimate collegiate endeavor.

“For me, it just means that I’m the example,” said Thomas when asked what it feels like to be the first to sign an e-sports scholarship at Fayetteville. “I’m the first. I may not be the best in the long run, but I’m the example for anyone else who may want to strive for that.”

Thomas, who started playing Rocket League “just for fun” in 2019, chose Huntingdon College in part due to its promising coaching staff led by Justin Ellis, aiming to continue his trajectory of success in the competitive gaming scene.

Thomas, who likened e-sports to chess in its strategic depth, has been honing his skills since the tenth grade under the guidance of Fayetteville’s e-sports head coach, Donna Igo. His transition from casual gaming to competitive play showcases the growing legitimacy and recognition of e-sports as a serious pursuit.

Rocket League, played in a 3v3 format akin to soccer where players control vehicles in a domed arena to score goals, has propelled Thomas to the upper echelons of competitive gaming.

With a personal best ranking of Grand Champion II, Thomas currently stands among the top 1.2 percent of players globally, eyeing future participation at the professional level in the Rocket League Championship Series if he continues to progress amongst the collegiate ranks.

Despite his collegiate commitment, Thomas remains dedicated to supporting his high school team as well.

Seth has told Coach Igo that he will continue to mentor his freshman teammates that he hopes continue on the path he has paved.

With no segregation among collegiate ranks, Thomas and Huntingdon College are poised to compete against well-known institutions such as Ohio State, Alabama, and USC as well as powerhouse e-sports programs at Miami University of Ohio, University of California – Irvine, and Maryville University in St. Louis, exemplifying the boundless potential of e-sports on the collegiate stage.

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