by Nick Dawes
February 16th is only a day away, and the Azubu Collegiate Champions StarCraft II Grand Finals are almost upon us! People are filtering into Los Angeles from all over the world to compete for $180,000 in prizes. Over 300 universities registered in the 2012-2013 season. It has been the CSL’s largest season to date. Now, after months of global competition, only four teams remain: Aarhus University from Denmark (Aarhus), University of California – Berkeley (Cal), University of Washington (UW), and Chunnam Techno University (CTU) from Korea. Aarhus and Berkeley will start the day off, and the winner will anxiously wait to see who wins the next match to take them on in the Grand Finals.
University of Washington vs. Chunnam Techno University
This will definitely be a series to see. The CSL “reported on UW’s playoff preparations”:http://www.cstarleague.com/news/54 a month ago, and now the team’s hard work will be put to the test. Everyone remembers how close UW came to the title last year, where Lok-Yin “KawaiiLighT” Kwong and Patrick “CaliberLighT” Coury lost both their matches, and the series with it.
But as UW’s Coordinator, Zane Allinger, told CSL’s Jonathan Sargent, “Everyone that attends is getting a lot better each boot camp […] Instead of just depending on our two best players, we now have eight strong dependable players.” Can they take their last two games this season, and with it 1st Place and $40,000?
No one will stress UW’s players, and their rigorous training to their limits than Chunnam Techno University. Hailing from SC2’s holy land, CTU represents the first time a Korean university has competed in a CSL finals. Their broadcast matches from last week against Auckland were a sight to behold. In Yong “nosmyfortic” Jin’s bio control was impeccable, picking apart Protoss defenses with strong timings and drops. Only time will tell what CTU will bring to the table at the Grand Finals. With faculty members like Kim Min-Ki, STX Soul’s coach, the Chunnam team is likely to bring something amazing to the event.
Can UW’s rigorous weekend bootcamps overcome the Korean titans? Will Kwong and Coury step up and take wins for their team this year? Or will the Koreans put an Azubu-colored feather in their cap, bringing home another SC2 victory? Auckland took 2 games off CTU, the Koreans are far from invincible. But will CTU fall in Los Angeles, and will UW be the ones to knock them down?
On Saturday, February 16th, 2013 we will see which team goes home with $40,000 and the title of SC2 Collegiate Champions! You can follow the action on the official CSL stream at azubu.tv starting at 11:00am PST!
Nick Dawes is a staff writer for the Collegiate Starleague, and a graduate of University of California, Davis. Follow his eclectic thoughts on Twitter @WreNnish86.