FAIRBANKS, Alaska - Colleges in the Midwest for students are starting to put e-sports on the map.
What were at one point guys playing games in the basement, have now become e-sports arenas being opened for them to play their craft in front of fans.
How does this tie in to Alaska?
Recently a story was done about the e-sports program at Southwest Baptist University in Missouri.
Jonathan Steigleman, a freshman from Anchorage, is on SBU's League of Legends team, who was offered scholarships to schools like Robert Morris and Tiffin University.
He is pursuing a computer science degree, but when he found out there was a spot on SBU's team, he jumped at the opportunity.
But if you thought it was just playing games and sitting all day then you are wrong.
According to Steigleman, they are required to do physical therapy workouts.
Steigelman is one of the first Alaskans to join a school's varsity program, but to him he gets to continue playing the game he loves while getting a college education.
This isn't the first time video games are being used in college for contests.
In 1972, the game "Spacewar" was played for a subscription to Rolling Stone at Stanford University while they handed out free beer, according to an article from the Baltimore Sun.
There have been many changes over the years, most notably if we compare the number of viewers to the Game 7 of the NBA Finals in 2016 to the Finals for League of Legends in the same year.
In Game 7, 31 million people watched the game, but the Worlds Finals for League of Legends brought in 43 million viewers.
Based on those numbers, e-sports are here to stay.