Earlier this year the Adelaide Crows AFL club made waves by becoming the first major Australian sporting organisation to buy into esports, via the acquisition of Legacy Esports. And later today, they took another first step for the industry: by building a high performance centre exclusively for esports.
In a post on the Legacy Esports website, the team announced that a centre would be built at the AFL club's headquarters in West Lakes, South Australia.
It's not a fully funded project yet - the club notes that they are "liaising with a number of possible corporate backers" - but it's a major signal of intent by the football organisation. The proposed location will make things interesting: Legacy already has a gaming team house in Sydney's Lidcombe.
The growth of League of Legends has been a massive boon for Australia's burgeoning esports scene, not just for the injection of players into competitive gaming but also the increased teams and organisations that have formed around it.
The idea is to have a facility where the Legacy players - which number around 30 at this stage - can connect with the nutritionists, doctors, sports scientists and staff that currently service the AFL and AWFL teams.
It's an interesting move, and could end up being a thoroughly supportive move for more teams than just Legacy. Esports teams have shared space in the past for bootcamps before major events - especially international ones - and having this kind of institutional backing also sets a standard for other organisations to follow.