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Theo “Uomi” Ignacio - Campus Esports Built Me

July 21, 2021
Theo Ignacio

The First Collegiate Esports Dynasty

In 2016, the first iteration of Teletigers was made out of fun between students from an arts college for the sole purpose of winning in-game currency and extra cash. Back then, campus esports was just a tournament, and it ended there.

The only thing that I actually credit myself for is the idea that campus esports in University of Santo Tomas could be so much more. By 2017 with a lot of my seniors graduating, I established Teletigers Esports Club with the vision that it could strengthen the university’s power in esports by unifying several powerful teams inside the university.

I found the right people at the perfect time.

The Teletigers were able to secure national collegiate championships every year across several esports titles, represent the Philippines in several major international tournaments, and eventually transition some of its players to professional play.

From left, Theo “Uomi” Ignacio, Brussel “Sel” Isidro, Daeniel “BabyyFace” Fornea, Isaiah “Cera” Loberiza, Laurence “Espiegle” Estrada, Jan Edward “Cresho” Hortizuela, Rallion “Carrots” Gatchalian

Struggling for Admin Support

What baffles me the most is that despite the major successes of Teletigers unmatched by any other university in the Philippines, Teletigers still found it hard to gain support from the administration of University of Santo Tomas. 

It took us almost 5 years to finally establish a connection with the administration, and it took the joint effort of AcadArena, the entire staff of Teletigers, and the Thomasian Minecraft community to make a valid stand towards the administration of UST about gaming and esports.

Now in 2021, Teletigers Esports Club is finally at the doorstep of organizational support from the school administration. Though under a different name, the vision and mission still lies the same.

Preparing the Next Generation of Teletigers

Before AcadArena, campus esports had no meaning besides the narrative of winners and who the strongest team was. I was built in that era of campus esports, and my leadership was catered to those times. But despite that, I knew that the future of campus esports is not just play.

I knew I had to find my successors in managing the organization to new heights. A good mix of people with and without competitive background, people who understand the community, and people who share the love for gaming and esports.

Thankfully, I found the right people at the perfect time once again.

People know me as the founder of Teletigers Esports Club, known for the many achievements that the organization had under my leadership. But honestly, I’m nothing without the people that made Teletigers Esports Club as successful as it is right now.

At the end of the day, campus esports is not just about winning, not just about proving you’re the better team. Campus esports is about building communities, forging bonds, making champions, and securing a better future for all student gamers, no matter who they choose to be.

Joining AcadArena

After graduating from University of Santo Tomas, and passing my responsibilities to the new generation of Teletigers, I found myself in the Home of Philippine Campus Esports. 

This is a space that lets me have a hand in forging the future of campus esports in the Philippines, and a space where I could learn with industry professionals that share the same passion and vision for campus esports.

Whatever happens to AcadArena and campus esports in the future, I know for sure that campus esports built me.

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