Survey shows TCSS students want E-sports

Published 8:30 am Thursday, March 18, 2021

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A recent athletic survey showed that Troup County School System students would like to see E-sports added, as well as more middle school sports.

According to data reviewed at Monday night’s work session, there were 3,042 responses to a recent survey, asking fifth through eleventh graders about what sports they’d like to see the school system offer.

A total of 3,042 students responded to the survey, and 66.4 percent do not current play a sport. The respondents were almost evenly split by gender with 48 percent of females and 52 percent of males.  

Over a third of responses, 1,116 students, said they would like to see E-sports, which is essentially playing video games competitively.

“It is very popular among our youth,” said District Athletic Director Steven Heaton.

High school flag football, middle school baseball and middle school softball were also popular responses.

“It’s very important because we don’t have those right now,” Heaton said. “If we have middle schoolers who want to participate in baseball for instance, they have to compete they have to compete with folks in high school.”

Heaton said this year TCSS created a partnership with Griffin and Spalding schools for middle school football and basketball. 

He said soccer is being added as well.

“There are very limited opportunities at the middle school level currently, and we want to make sure those folks have an opportunity to play and to participate in sports,” Heaton said.  “I think having something for every student keeps them in school, they want to be there and their interest in sports certainly helps develop them along the way to become good, disciplined adults.”

There are more than 3,000 students in the Troup County School System who currently participate in sports, which include football, one act play, baseball, golf, basketball, soccer, swimming, tennis, track, volleyball, adaptive sports, wrestling, softball, cheerleading and cross country. 

Heaton said this year more than 35 students have signed athletic scholarships to 26 different universities.

“This is particularly significant because we are working through COVID and those opportunities are very competitive and very sparse this year,” Heaton said. “Universities are closed and have been closed and those opportunities are competitive anyway, but our students have done a great job. We will probably have additional folks who will sign before the end of the year.”