Robert Morris University-Illinois, a small private university in Chicago, will offer eSports scholarships later this year. Beginning this fall, the scholarships will cover up to 50 percent of tuition and room and board; which is worth up to $19,000 per student. This is the first substantial scholarship of its kind in the U.S. The school plans on offering 45-50 athletic scholarships to competitive League of Legends gamers.

League of Legends has 70 million players per month and in terms of hours played, it was the most popular video game in the U.S. and Europe in 2012.

RMU is also looking into hiring a coach for its team. League of Legends is a highly competitive game that requires a lot of teamwork, strategy, and skill.

A competitive college league already exists in the form of the Collegiate Star League dedicated to video gaming. The CSL is comprised of teams at 100 universities such as MIT and UC Berkeley. Most teams exist as clubs or informal groups at their respective schools. The RMU Eagles will be an official team in this league.

They’ll be competing in a North America Collegiate Championship. The NACC offers $100,000 in scholarship prizes, which is a significant pool of prize money despite being a fraction of what many traditional sports leagues generate.
However, just like in other college sports, graduating eSports players will have opportunities to join the major leagues—in this case, Major League Gaming, also known as MLG.
MLG just recently held their national championships in Anaheim, CA for League of Legends. Also, in related news, The International DOTA 2 Championship will be held in Seattle, WA this July with a current prize pool of almost $10 million. DOTA 2 is a game similar to League of Legends and is also known as a highly competitive eSport.
Source: NPR