Leibrecht makes history, earns Linn’s first esports scholarship to MBU

By Edward Gehlert, Staff Writer
Posted 1/14/22

Linn senior Logan Leibrecht makes history as the first Wildcat to earn an esports scholarship after he signed an agreement with Missouri Baptist University on Jan. 6 to join the Spartans’ …

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Leibrecht makes history, earns Linn’s first esports scholarship to MBU

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Linn senior Logan Leibrecht makes history as the first Wildcat to earn an esports scholarship after he signed an agreement with Missouri Baptist University on Jan. 6 to join the Spartans’ gaming team.

Leibrecht has been awarded a scholarship of $18,000 annually to play esports for the Spartans and is grateful to the college, and his fellow esports Wildcats, for providing the opportunity to compete collegiately. 

“It’s crazy,” Leibrecht said. “I didn’t know I was going to sign so early. I’m really appreciative of everything Missouri Baptist has done for me. I’m thankful for my teammates supporting me through high school. Most of them are my best friends.”

Leibrecht’s excitement at the prospect of playing at the college level was equally matched by Spartans assistant esports coaches Matthew and Audria McGreevy, who were present to officially sign him to the team.

“He’s good. That’s the most important thing, he’s good, but he’s also a very nice guy,” Coach Matthew said. “That’s the kind of person you want to build a program around. You want to have good people who are going to try hard and work hard and he seems like that kind of person.”

“It’s really exciting to be able to look at people’s talent and be able to get them into a college they may otherwise not be able to look at or attend,” Coach Audria added. “Finding Logan was amazing. We are really excited to have him.”

Leibrecht will be on the Spartans Rocket League team, a game he is comfortable with and has been playing recreationally since 2015 and competitively for the esports Wildcats since 2020.

Wildcats esports coach Andrew Medley, who started the program in Linn just two years ago, is proud of Leibrecht’s accomplishment and is hopeful this will set an example and lead to more interest in esports as a viable avenue for other local students to explore when they are applying to colleges.

“I hope that Logan’s success here will spur other schools and districts in our area to form and develop their own esports programs,” Medley added. “There are so many students who go home and play video games every night and have put in just as much time, hard work, and dedication as Logan has with Rocket League. But it takes educators and schools providing an outlet for those students to compete for their skills to shine.

“If we hadn’t started our program when we did here at Linn, Logan may never have seen esports as a pathway to college or may never have been seen by the recruiters at MBU and other colleges across the country. I know that there are other (students like) Logan in schools all across mid-Missouri,” Medley continued. “I just hope there are educators and administrators willing to do the tough work of getting their programs started. You never know who will walk through the door ready to play.”

Medley says that interest in esports in the district has grown and now middle school is included in the program.

“In total, I believe we will have over 30 students competing in esports this fall,” he said. “We will have a high school and middle school Rocket League team, high school Overwatch team, and Super Smash Bros. for both high school and middle school. High school Super Smash Bros. will also play in a Missouri Scholastic Esports Federation (MOSEF) season similar to Rocket League in the fall. Middle school Smash Bros will also play in MOSEF.”

Medley would like to thank the district and their team sponsors for the support shown to the esports program, noting that sponsors and volunteers have been generous with their time and money to help the program obtain the equipment needed to stay competitive.

“We have purchased three new computers thanks to some fundraising efforts this past fall,” said Medley. “We shall see what we are able to do in the spring as we continue to grow.”

Leibrecht expressed gratitude to Medley for starting the esports program and wishes him continued success in helping other students achieve their college aspirations.

Leibrecht, the son of Philip Leibrecht and Deborah McClellan, will study business and marketing at Missouri Baptist University.

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