PNW’s newest sports team has a new coach. Justin Bragg will lead the Pride’s esports team,
which will compete in online games with teams across the nation.
“I am very excited to be able to join the community here but it has been a little bit of a struggle to
get to know [everyone] due to COVID-19,” said Bragg.
Bragg comes to PNW from Illinois College, where he coached esports for three seasons since
debuting the school’s program in 2018, playing League of Legends, a multiplayer online battle
arena video game. He led the Illinois College team to a 9-2 record this year.
Bragg has played League of Legends for eight years, participating in both Grandmaster and
Challenger tiers for the past five years. At one point, Bragg was ranked among the top 10 North
American League of Legends players.
Bragg is organizing a co-ed varsity team of players who will compete in esports arenas to be
developed in the student union buildings on both the Hammond and Westville campuses.
“There is so much that esports can offer to a community,” Bragg said. “I look forward to working
with the students, faculty and staff at Purdue Northwest and Northwest Indiana.”
Although geared towards gamers, almost anyone can find interest in this virtual sport. Bragg
“I played soccer most of my life and was very competitive in that, so when I wasn’t going to play
professionally, I decided to put more time into League of Legends,” the new coach said.
Athletic Director Rick Costello supported the launch of an esports team on campus after
learning about the sport’s growing appeal.
“Esports is a vast industry across the country. It’s a billion-dollar business with incredible
growth,” said Costello. “Purdue Northwest is interested in growth within enrollment, and the
implementation of esports could open a lot of doors for the university.”