This match between UCF and UTD could be closer than what people are expecting. UTD has had some really convincing results over Carleton and UConn; this team has definitely been stepping up. Their team is composed mostly of Intermediate players, with the exception of aSauce currently on an ESEA-Main team and Proximal currently competing in ESEA-Advanced. On the side of UCF, they had quite a convincing series victory over RIT in R2, as I was expecting that series to be a bit closer. UCF is mostly composed of ESEA-Main players, with the exception of Char, who competed in multiple seasons of ESEA-MDL. Regardless, the level of skill on UCF indicates to me that they should be winning this series, but UTD has been rising to the occasion. I think UTD will take one map off at best, but overall UCF should have this.
University of Central Florida > University of Texas Dallas - 2-1
I have always wondered if this match-up would ever happen in the past couple years of the CSL, but it is finally happening. Although I was skeptical of UBC at the start of the year, their win against Kennesaw State does indicate to me that they’re definitely on the rise and taking the league more seriously. UIUC has always been a strong team, and their recent match against Virginia Tech also shows they have some resilience as it went to three maps. Overall, UBC has the more well-rounded squad in this match-up, but UIUC has the chance to surprise. A lot is going to be riding on BokuMboP to deliver, and if he does, they have a chance at making it into a third map. However, my prediction is that UBC will take it 2-0, with UIUC maybe having one close map against them.
University of British Columbia > University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign - 2-0
This match-up between Maryville and Ohio State could be a great match to watch. Ohio State University has shown some good results lately with their big wins over Houston and Montreal. As a current ESEA-Main team, Ohio State at least keeps themselves sharp by competing in leagues outside of the CSL. Maryville are no slouches either, with ttocSickk, -AM-, and -Cal- all competing on the same team in ESEA-Main. Maryville did have a bit of a struggle on one of the maps against North Carolina State, which was a little bit surprising to me. The map vetos could play a huge part in this series, and I believe Ohio State likely has a better map pool. For that reason, I’m giving it to Ohio State, 2-1.
Ohio State University > Maryville University - 2-1
Ohio State: weat
This match-up has the potential to be a grand finals match as both are top teams in the CSL. With both teams sporting players who have had MDL players, this should be a spectacular match. The interesting thing about RMU is that they’ve been fielding a different 5 for each match as of late, and Georgia State has also been doing the same with Moechilla coming back from inactivity. The map pool will likely play a factor in this series. RMU has shown that they’re not unstoppable especially with their close OT game on dust2 against UCSC. At the same time, Georgia State also had a really close OT game on dust2 against Kennesaw State, so I wouldn’t be surprised to see that map being a common veto for both teams. This should be a great match, but I’m going with RMU 2-1.
Robert Morris University > Georgia State University - 2-1
Georgia State: SwahN