Riot Games is going all in on collegiate VALORANT right as summer break comes to an end. The company announced the inaugural College VALORANT season today, better known as CVAL, which will feature year-long regional competition that concludes with a 32-team championship featuring a LAN finals.
The regular season will be split into 12 total tournaments: one in each of four geographic regions during the fall, winter, and spring. The top two placing teams in each of the 12 events will qualify for the CVAL Championship, plus the top two teams in season points from each of the four regions. The “final rounds” of the CVAL Championship will “be held live in Los Angeles around May or June 2023.”
As Riot does with collegiate League, there is no direct pathway for collegiate teams to reach the professional ecosystem. But Riot does “expect the highest level of scholastic play to draw the attention of pro scouts who already have a vested interest in seeking out top talent.”
Players who wish to participate “must be currently enrolled in a degree program lasting at least two years and in academic good standing at the school they are competing for as either a full-time student, or a part time student that is a former full-time student within one academic year of their expected graduation.” The collegiate season allows for school-sponsored teams and student-run clubs, and even will allow multiple teams from a single school to compete.
The registration period for the first fall tournament opens on Sept. 9, 2022, and will remain open until Oct. 7. Phase one of that tournament, a round-robin group stage consisting of 128 teams per region, begins on Oct. 24.