When students from 40 universities nationwide compete against each other in the USF Esports Fall Invitational this month, they’ll have an opportunity to take their rivalry to a whole new level thanks to a new partnership with University of South Florida alum-founded company, Top Corp.
Throughout the two weeks of steaming of competition in five major esports titles, students from 39 U.S. universities and one Canadian university will be able to tune in to Top’s recently launched EstreamR platform, which the company calls the "SportsCenter of esports". EstreamR is a platform that displays the top gaming and esports highlights, which are voted on by fans. The event began Nov. 5 and continues through this weekend.
At the end of the tournament, one clip will be named the top play of Fall 2020 and one school will be crowned the title of best esports fans in the United States.
"With the upcoming invitational, we know that we will be able to showcase not only the talented students here at USF, but also the alumni that are now giving back to this program,” said Antonio Gonzalez, Assistant Director of Sports Programs & Outdoor Facilities for USF Recreation & Wellness. “We are excited to be a part of the launch for their new Estreamr platform as we host the largest collegiate tournament in the nation by any one school.”
The USF Esports Fall Invitational determines who has the most competitive esports program to start off the 2020-2021 season. Launched by USF Campus Recreation six months ago, USF’s esports program has quickly become a popular social and recreational outlet for gamers across all three university campuses.
USF Esports Fall Invitational will be streaming and casting more than 40 hours of competitive matches during the courses of the event to get highlights and real-time footage of more than 200 elite college esports athletes.
Top’s one-of-a-kind multi-channel, data-driven platform allows organizations and companies to engage audiences with live interactive content – like voting, games and competitions – to enhance a wide range of entertainment and consumer experiences.
“The partnership between USF and Top is really exciting for me, as an alum, and a huge fan of esports,” Cohen said. “Esports and Gaming continues to expand, and we are thrilled to be tapping into this rapidly growing industry to provide increased engagement for fans and invaluable data for brands. “
Cohen, who graduated from USF in 2006 with a Bachelor of Arts in Advertising, back to where his innovative ideas first took flight and comes amid a year where his company has had major business breakthroughs. Gonzalez said Cohen has been “a great sounding board and has really helped us to expand our concept of what our esports program could look like.”
Based in New York City, Top, was accepted to the prestigious Entrepreneurs Roundtable Accelerator in New York earlier this year and earned the distinction of being the first company to receive funding from the new SEED Florida startup fund led by USF Research & Innovation in partnership with Florida Funders. Top’s consumer voting platforms have been used by brands like Priceline and E. & J. Gallo Winery and others, to collect user-generated content and consumer feedback.
While other platforms allow you to share your opinion, on EstreamR you actually have the power to vote,” said Top’s Chief Technology Officer Dave Yules. “StreamRecap has been a terrific partner for us to help bring in gaming content for fans to engage with the Esports and Gaming communities, and we're extremely excited to give power to each of those voices.”
All major matches will be streamed on twitch.tv/usf_esports.
The University of South Florida is a high-impact global research university dedicated to student success. Over the past 10 years, no other public university in the country has risen faster in U.S. News and World Report’s national university rankings than USF. Serving more than 50,000 students on campuses in Tampa, St. Petersburg and Sarasota-Manatee, USF is designated as a Preeminent State Research University by the Florida Board of Governors, placing it in the most elite category among the state’s 12 public universities. USF has earned widespread national recognition for its success graduating under-represented minority and limited-income students at rates equal to or higher than white and higher income students. USF is a member of the American Athletic Conference. Learn more at www.usf.edu.
Top enables brands and publishers in retail, broadcast and entertainment, to turbo charge their engagement and collect user data via live voting, competitions and interactive content across any channel, on any device. Using AI, they built a predictive analysis which learns future behavior of participating users, which provides clients with precise targeting and significantly lowers marketing costs.