Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing has announced the creation of a scholarship for members of Ball State University’s Esports team. Ball State is the alma mater of team owner David Letterman and boasts one of the most advanced collegiate Esports programs in the nation.
Students in Ball State’s Esports program will participate in various community events with RLL to promote sim racing. RLL’s plans with Ball State mirror NASCAR’s plans to expand its presence on college campuses by targeting Esports programs.
Two students each year, for three years, will receive a $5,000 scholarship. In addition to traditional Esports gear such as computer keyboards and mice, Ball State’s program consists of a number of sim racing rigs for students to use.
“I am grateful to Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing for its commitment to the success of our students, and I am grateful to Mr. Letterman for his continued engagement with our University,” Ball State President Geoffrey S. Mearns said. “It is exciting to celebrate our partnership with RLL by hosting an elite racing team on our campus in a state where racing is an integral part of our culture.”
Ball State is located in Muncie, Indiana, and is just over one hour away from Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Ball State began its eSports program in 2021 and offers courses in the history of Esports and in Esports event production. The schools’ 3,600-square-foot Esports center features an elevated stage for 6v6 competitions and stadium seating that accommodates 50 spectators.
“On behalf of Bobby Rahal, David Letterman, and Mike Lanigan, we are excited to form this strategic partnership with Ball State University’s Esports program,” said Tom Knox, senior vice president of sales and marketing for RLL. “Esports is an emerging and highly competitive field. Investing in the future expertise in this area is of great importance to our team and particularly our engineers. This partnership with Ball State connects on many levels including the ability to tap into the bright minds that make up the faculty, students, and alumni.”