Welcome to College Wakeboarding

College Wakeboard Championships!
Lake Las Vegas April 16-19th 2015!
Get your team or self out there.

ASU at Watersports Farm

Outdoor Toy Share Looking For Interns

Empire Wake has partnered up in the 2015 season with a brand new company and something that has never been brought to water sports before. With the growth and success of peer to peer sharing, such as Uber and Lyft, Outdoor Toy Share wants to bring the same concept to wakeboarding.

As we have spoken more with the company we have found a way to utilize this concept to help College Wakeboard programs have access to wakeboard boats without having to spend the money to purchase one.

One of the biggest steps in this program is to get some college wakeboarders involved. This gives Outdoor Toy Share your inside knowledge to help make this program a huge success for all teams needing a boat or even 2!

Here is the job description:

Market Analyst & Coordinator Spring and Summer 2015

Locations may include (in order of preference): Boise, Dallas, Atlanta, Seattle and Salt Lake City

Description: We’re excited to launch an innovative business this spring called Outdoor Toy Share. We help owners rent out their underused boats, personal watercraft, RVs and more, when they’d typically be sitting in storage. It’s safe, easy and smart for owners and users. We do extensive user screening, provide training and insure those assets for the rental. Much of this will be facilitated through our custom website, currently under development.

Responsibilities.  Here’s what you’ll do:
    - Market research and analysis.
    - At the beginning you’ll drive the analysis to better understand the boating, PWC and RV market in your location. (Tell us what you know about your local area)

    - Once the season is going, you’ll help owners and users with needs as they arise surrounding the execution of rental transactions. This will likely include onsite training / overviews with users prior to their rental. (May require a truck to pull a boat a little, let us know if you have one or ready access to one)

This is a start-up, we need someone who understands that this fundamentally requires flexibility and a “can-do” attitude.  Here are some other things you may be doing:
 -  Marketing material distribution
 -  Local industry event attendance
 -  Support social media efforts
 - Light office tasks, although this position will work remotely

 -  You need to be very familiar with operating boats and able to teach the basics to others with less experience. This is required. Familiarity with PWCs and RVs is a big plus. Tell us about this in years of experience and approximate hours.

 -  Given the interaction with people, excellent verbal and written communication is very important. We need a “people person” for the role.

-  Must be organized and able to work well independently.
- Prefer a student with about one year of school left before graduation.
- Prefer a student with business coursework (a minor or more is a plus) and entrepreneurial interests.
- Microsoft Office capabilities
More info:
20+ hours per week. $10 per hour. Prefer someone to start soon, must start by April and will continue through the summer. Prefer 3.0 GPA or better. Must be eligible to work in the US. 1099 position
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Custom College Wakeboard Vest Program

Thanks to the cooperation and hard work from sponsors JetPilot and Elevated Clothing along with Empire Wake, College Wakeboard teams who are part of the College Wake Series can now create custom vest for their clubs.

The program will launch in January of 2015 and offers teams the brand new JetPilot, Chris O'Shea vest to work with. The vest will be blank and all black for the teams to be able to print their logo on. Spaces include the front right or left chest as well as the back top.

Teams can print with 1 or 2 colors depending on their design. This gives everyone quite a bit of freedom on how to make their own vest for the 2015-2016 season.

The O'Shea is a comp vest and currently no CGA vest is available for the program. If everything goes well, then we will be offering the CGA next fall for our cable riders.

"We are really excited to launch this program finally," said Rob Mendieta, owner of Empire Wake and founder of the College Wake Series. "It has been about a year in the making to bring this together just the right way with the best vest we could find."

The Jet Pilot Chris O'Shea retails for $125.00 for the standard consumer. To our ex citement these custom vest for teams come with custom logos for only $130.00.

Cut off to order your team vest is June 1st 2015. Delivery will be 1st of September to kick off the new College season. Special Thanks again to JetPilot and Eleveated Clothing!

To download the order form and program requirements, click here. 

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College Wake Weekend in Sacramento

 October 25th 2014

It was the biggest weekend in College Wakeboarding we have seen in a long time. Last minute teams deciding to compete boosted the total rider numbers to 90 plus. Arizona State was back for more, along with Sac State, Chico State, Washington State and Boise State.  New teams Utah, Cal Poly State, and Western Washington were on site at their first events in the College Wake Series and some old friends at Central Washington brought a strong team as well.

The Watersports Farm was windy on Saturday with winds reaching 25 miles per hour at some points. Fortunately, being out of the south, the event was able to go on. Teams were woken abruptly with rain and wind at 8am causing tents to blow over and campers to get soaked. That was the last of the rain for the day though and the sun came out.

The Intermediate Division kicked off the event with a huge turn out of 22 riders. It was pretty well broken up evenly among all the teams. However, Arizona State dominated the podium with Ryan Hinrich taking 1st and Greg Crusco landing in 3rd. Ryan and Greg aren't new to the podium this season. Greg placed 3rd at stop 1 in Minneapolis and Ryan ended up 3rd in Dallas. Their consistency will keep ASU ranking higher.

To round out the Intermediate riders was new team President Aaron Dobron of Utah. First event, first podium, not too bad to start his career.

Up next was Women's Advanced. This was a Sacramento State division with Junior Nataly Connor placing 3rd and Megan Cramer taking second. Women's Advanced will score big for team points and their national rankings and move Sac State up the list and into the top 10. Taking the top spot in Women's Advanced was Michaela Trulson of Western Washington.

In Men's Advanced, Chico State's Blake Payton took down Andrew Schrank of ASU and Teddy Zografos of Central Washington. Blake has been to a few College Wake Series events and riding strong each time.

Jack Cerenzia of Washington State was the top rider of the event. Jack killed it with a Toeside Backside 360, and a Toeside Front Roll to Revert. Jack went down on Crowmobe at the end of his run, but still had enough other tricks and style to take first in Open.

Cerenzia had to beat out Ben Hernstedt of Sac State, and Elevated Clothing team rider and Rex Laverne of Chico State.

Nautique pulled the event with a beautiful G21 thanks to Western Sales rep Greg Dick and local dealer Superior Boats through the Open division. Unfortunately, due to the prop catching an unknown object underwater, the men's and women's Division finished out the day with our College Wakesurf Sponsor Centurion Enzo FS33.

The nightlife was as wild as the weekend thanks to Red Bull for bringing out New Beat Fund Friday night for a live show, and Saturday Night DJ Amar under the illuminated Red Bull tent.

The final stop of the College Wake Series heads to Florida mid November, check out the latest movement in the College Wakeboarding National Rankings!

Full Results

1. Jack Cerenzia   Washington State
2. Ben Hernstedt  Sac State
3. Rex LaVerne    Chico State

Men's Advanced  
1. Blake Payton    Chico State
2. Andrew Schrank   ASU
3.  Teddy Zografos   Central Washington

Women's Advanced
1. Michaela Trulson  Western Washington
2. Megan Kramer    Sac State
3. Nataly Conner  Sac State

1. Ryan Hinrichs    ASU
2. Aaron Dobron   Utah
3. Greg Crusco   ASU

Men's Beginner
1. Cole Cantaneo   Sac State
2. Shane Austin    Sac State
3. Daniel Ruger    Chico State

Women's Beginner
1. Mariah Smith  Washington State
2. Katherine Norris   Central Washington
3. Caitlin Porter   Sac State

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College Wakesurfing Continues to Grow



The year has flown by for College Wakesurfing. Centurion Boats, Buywake.com and Brigade Wakesurfing have made it a great start to what is clearly a big future of the sport.

Stop 2 brought the tour to Lake Lewisville in Dallas Texas. Centurion rolled out big with the tour bus and Freedom Powersports. This was the first 3 event weekend for College Wakesurfing and it turned out to be a good one.

Kaytin Voigt of Baylor Wake took first in Beginner Surf behind the Centurion FS44 beating out 5 other surfers in the division.

Up next in Beginner Skim was Cameron Budd also of Baylor Wake taking the top spot. Baylor is a team supported heavily from Brigade Wakesurfing, and it has shown at this event with the level of surfing from their team.

Mid day Surfing continued after a demo from 5x World Wakesurfing Champion Keenan Flegel who was riding his brand new pro model for the first time. Keenan killed it for the crowd showing what is soon to come.

Tyler Walker was your first place Advanced Surf and Andrew Stebbins of UCF came all the way from Orlando to place first in Advanced Skim.

Next the tour headed to Sacramento and the Watersports Farm. The Farm is a Centurion supported lake with a brand new FS33

Jesse Baba, the sole surfer for the ASU Wakedevils rode both Beginner Skim and Advanced Surf. He is pushing hard to expand the already dominate Wakedevil team into the Surfing world. Jesse placed first in both divisions.

Beginner Surf was the largest of the day. Cameron Russell of Western Washington placed 1st, followed up by Jake Courtright of Washington State and coming in 3rd Jack Klipfel of Washington State.

This will wrap up the fall season of College Wakesurfing. The buzz has been huge and we are excited
to see what the spring and 2015 year have to offer.

Big thanks to Centruion Boats and Brigade Wakesurfing for starting it off with us as College Wakesurfing falls into place.

Until next year....

Thanks Kameleonz Sunglasses, Centurion Boats, Buywake.com and Brigade Wakesurfing! 
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Dallas Blows Up!

October 18th 2014

It has been a couple years since we have seen these numbers and the caliber of riding we witnessed this weekend on Lake Lewisville Texas. Baylor, Texas State, Arizona State, Stephen F. Austin, Oklahoma State, and Texas A&M all came to compete with their best for College Wake.

Buxton Marine brought out the Nautique G23 once again to pull all 70 riders with the top wakeboard boat on the market. The water calmed down as the wind switch directions just in time to kick off the wake part of the day.

Teams got to watch #2 Arizona State and number #4 Texas A&M battle it out as both look to improve their national standings. The WakeDevils got started right away placing Steve Granger second and Ryan Hinrichs third on the podium for the Intermediate Division. This was one of the largest divisions of the day with 15 riders.

Up next Josh Coppinger a Junior out of Seal Beach CA took 1st in Men's Advanced for ASU beating out Kyle Aubuchon of Texas A&M and Ryan Sanders of Texas State. A&M President Morgen Burchell killed it in Women's Advanced beating Casey Knox of ASU.

Texas State came in big this event placing Jack Guenther in 2nd in Open as he came off a knee injury sidelining him for 7 months. Blake Daniel took the top spot in Intermediate as well. The Bobcats have a great deal going with Texas Ski Ranch with use of the cable park and the private lake with a boat.

The day belonged to Mashall Lewis of Baylor Wake. The sophomore out of New Braunfels Texas is arguable the best college rider in the country right now. He might be looking to dethrone Damien Adam from top College Men's Rider of the year. Marshal Lewis took down Jack Guenther and Matt McCaleb of Oklahoma State to win the Open division and a GoPro Hero 3.  

ASU bringing 24 riders to Dallas was just too much for other teams to take. Texas A&M boosted their ranking and Texas State came in the top 10 for the first time. 

The College Wake Series heads to Sacramento California for the next stop and another full 3 event weekend.

Event Results:

1. Marshall Lewis   Baylor Wake
2. Jack Guenther    Texas State
3. Matt McCaleb    Oklahoma State

Men's Advanced
1. Josh Coppinger   Arizona State
2. Kyle Aubuchon   Texas A&M
3. Ryan Sanders       Texas State

Women's Advanced
1. Morgen Burchell     Texas A&M
2. Casey Knox             Arizona State
3. Kierstin Simmons   Arizona State

1. Blake Daniel     Texas State
2. Steve Granger   Arizona State
3. Ryan Hinrichs   Arizona State

Women's Beginner
1. Kristin Jorden       Texas A&M
2. Sara Richardson   Texas A&M
3. Tori Broussard      Baylor

Men's Beginner
1. Zak Ellis    Texas A&M
2. Wade Concienne    Texas A&M
3. Jeremy Woodruff    Arizona State

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College Cable National Championship Video

Knights Wake goes back to back National College Cable Champions!

It was a great weekend at Hydrous Little Elm with TCU, South Florida, North Texas and Central Florida battling for their shot at a national title. Once again we saw really amazing levels of riding from all the teams.

TCU showed they are ready to make a run in 2014-15 and upend Central Florida. Being a new team they were short rider number and just couldn't earn enough points to move on. Alyssa Crouse might be the best female cable rider at the College level right now.

North Texas ended up in the finals against KnightsWake. Scotty Visser killed it all weekend for the Mean Green Wake Team, but it just wasn't enough without top rider Ashley Cash still nursing her latest injury.

Kellan Rudnicki, the Knights President and Senior lead UCF to its second national title in 2 years and ended his college wakeboarding career on a high note.

Check out the video and see some of the action from the riders.

Special thanks to our College Cable Sponsors: Elevated Clothing, Humanoid Wake, Ctrl Wake, Protec Helmets, GoPro, Rockwell Watches, Buywake.com, Smith Optics, Kicker Audio and Red Bull DFW.

College Cable Nationals 2014 from Empire Wake on Vimeo.

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A farewell to Lake Lanier

It has been 7 years that College Wakeboarding has called Lake Lanier home. Numerous locations have hosted the largest of college wake events, but none better than Lake Lanier Islands. The location was almost perfect with a cove, restaurant and bar, white sand beach, great viewing area, and epic private campsite on the lake.

Sunset cove has moved in a different direction this year pushing the College Wake Series back to it's original home at Aqualand Marina. High winds and huge chop moved the event one more time to a protected back cove and nice boat ramp. All in all not a bad make shift event location.

MarineMax was there with the 2014 G23 to pull the 60 riders all day Saturday. There isn't much left you can say about the top boat on the market for wakeboarding. Always a clean wake, always huge.

The Gators of the University of Florida came in strong for the 4th year straight. They were loaded heavy with Marcus Knox the top wakeskater at the college level as well as Jon Kistemaker who took 1st in the Advanced Division. They didn't stop there placing Heather Bouchard in 2nd for Women's Advanced and and Jenna Curtis 3rd place Women's Beginner.

Once again however it was Rollins College our pre-season number 1 who showed this year they are in it for a national title. Damien Adam, our 2013-14 College Wakeboard Men's rider of the year hasn't missed a beat. After laying down a near perfect run he ended with his now signature Whirly 5.
The Swiss Olivia Lombard took first in Advanced Women's as well coming into College Wakeboarding for the first time. Fletcher Baker (Wakeskate) and Connor Kostra (Intermediate) both took second in their divisions.

The event even with all the moving of sites still turned out a strong day of riding. Texas A&M put out a great day landing them 4th in the country with another event in Dallas coming up to boost that ranking even higher. The team is lead by Morgen Burchell and has shown a lot of potential for a national title run as well. Morgen took 3rd in Advanced Women's in Atlanta.

After a long day of wakeboarding, we kicked off the College Cable Tour by getting 32 riders to sign up for the Brigade Bracket. Brigade Wakesurfing came out all the way from Idaho to show their support as the only wakesurfing company currently supporting college wake.

The surfers were pulled behind a 2014 Centurion FS44 with one of the largest waves in the industry. Centurion is the official towboat of College Wakesurfing this year and the top wakesurfing boat on the market.

Brigade also brought out their arsenal of boards for surfers to test out as they begin building their clubs with this new tour. The response was huge. It looks like College Wakesurfing is here to stay!

Full Event Results:

1. Damien Adam  Rollins College
2. Jon Hunt  Georgia
3. Pate Duddleston  Georgia

Men's Advanced
1. Jon Kistemaker  Florida
2. Daniel Roop   Texas A&M
3. Kyle Aubuchon   Texas A&M

Women's Advanced
1. Olivia Lombourd  Rollins College
2. Heather Bouchard   Florida
3. Morgen Burchell   Texas A&M

1. Chris Bureau  Georgia
2. Connor Kostra   Rollins College
3. Ryan Barbalace  Wake Forest

1. Marcus Knox   Florida
2. Fletcher Baker   Rollins College
3. Courtney Kobold   South Carolina

Women's Beginner
1. Maggie McDonald   West Florida
2. Alyssa Dennis    Georgia
3. Jenna Curtis     Florida

Men's Beginner
1. Matthew Rickards  Wake Forest
2. Andrew Saxton   Wake Forest
3. Vladimir Stozhov  Florida

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First College Wake National Rankings Released

The College Wake Series is off to a good start this season with stops 1 and 2 already knocked out. Minneapolis had some great riding in the upper divisions and the new Advanced Women's category was launched. Arizona State brought a big crew up to show they are the most traveled team in all of wakeboarding.

Stop 2 we got to see pre season number 1, Rollins Wake. They didn't disappoint! This team is clearly focused on a National Title, and Damien Adam is on his game. The team is deep too with Olivia Lombard winning Women's Advanced.

After the first 2 stops here is where the top 5 stand.

1. Rollins College
2. Arizona State
3. University of Florida
4. Texas A&M
5. Georgia

Florida showed their strength once again and their consistency with Jon Kistemaker and Marcus Knox winning Advanced and Wakeskate. Marcus is the top wakeskater in the country for the college level. Heather Bouchard took 2nd in Women's Advanced as well earning some strong points for the Gators.

There is still a lot of riding left in the season, expect to see some movement in the top 16 as we get through Dallas.

For the full top 16 teams through week 2 click here! 
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College Wakesurfing Kicks Off On Lake Lanier

October 5th 2014

It has always been the largest tour stop of the college wake season. It also was the first event Empire Wake hosted for the college level back in 2008. This only seemed fitting that it would also be the birth place of College Wakesurfing.

Texas A&M came all the way from College Station Texas for this one. They were met by University of Florida, Georgia, Wake Forest, West Florida and Rollins College.

Brigade Wakesurfing brought the "Brigade Bracket" format to the event. This opened up 32 spots for riders to compete head to head. This will be the format used throughout the College Wakesurf Tour. They also brought with them a line of their wakesurfers for any rider to use to compete.

The final 2 hours of the day was pulled by the Official Towboat of College Wakeboarding, the Centurion FS44. The boat produced a wave that all the participants raved about.

"You can really see the focus Centurion has put into their wakesurfing specific boats, "said Jordan Coffey, photographer for Empire Wake. "Getting to sit in the boat and see all the huge smiles on the surfers faces as they dropped into that massive wave was priceless."

With the chilly weather setting in early evening, the surfers decided to just stick to one round this time.

Next stop of the College Wakesurf Tour is Dallas Texas October 18th at Little Elm park. Teams be ready to win some great prizes from Brigade!

Big thanks to Sean and Shane from Brigade for hosting the afternoon. Also to Chris and the Centurion crew for bringing in the bus and helping tow all the riders.

Also to Aqualand Marina for allowing us to find some calm water and work with us moving the event! It was a fun weekend camping and we can't wait to find out where next year will move us too. 

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How To Get Club Sponsors 101

It is a question every college wake team has had since dawn of College Wakeboarding circa 2003, "How do we get sponsors, how do we raise money?" Well, Empire Wake is here to help you understand a little bit about what needs to be done and how to go about it.

The first thing to always remember about your club, is you are a small business. This means you have to market, advertise, and get your team out in the open to draw attention. Like every other business, the more attention you get, the more support you get.

So you have started your club, you have your members, now what? 
Sponsors want to know what you can do for them. They must see a return on their investment. So use your resources, YOUR MEMBERS! You can look at them like walking billboards that can talk.

For example: T-shirts. Everyone loves a good t-shirt. A very easy step to making a sponsor happy and earning some dollars is to make club shirts that have logo space available. We have always recommended this for teams looking to raise money for college nationals.

Don't try to over sell this space either. Make it prime real estate, large logos are $100 and small are $60. You offer 4 large logo spaces (totaling $400) and 10 small spaces (totaling $600). You now have made $1000 for selling something simple on your national team shirt. A local company, or a riders parent's company is usually an easy sell with the right pitch.

A second option is to make a new club banner that you post up at each event and team function you
do. The cost to make a beautiful full color banner is about $60-$80 depending on the size. Selling ad space on the banner is simple and cheap. Again, offer 10 spaces for $100 each on the new club banner. That is another $1000.

Make sure to bring it to all events and functions. Post team photos with it often. Send the sponsors the photos so they see their dollars at work. They will love to see the banners used at contests even more. Empire Wake will gladly post your banner at events!

Jersey Sponsors
Elevated Clothing can make your team some awesome jerseys! But you have lots of space on there that you can use. Have you ever watched Premier Cup Soccer? Each team has a big logo on their jersey front or back. Do you know how much that space is worth financially? Think about how many times your jersey is seen. This is a premier chance to make some money and even cover the cost of your jerseys. Look into having your biggest sponsor somewhere visible on your next team jersey. 

What about product and board sponsors?
T-shirts and banners are the easy stuff. They are easy and cheap to make, and last a long time. Now, you want to get some industry sponsors involved. Maybe you want some club gear, or benefits for your members who are paying big bucks to be in the club.

To make it easy on where to look and start, look who already is supporting College Wakeboarding. There is a reason Humanoid, and Ctrl Wake are sponsors every year! They believe in what you all are doing. Call them first and work out a deal! We know for a fact your team will get further reaching out to companies already partnered with Empire Wake than going after someone that isn't supporting.

Something to think about as well, just as we stated above, brands and companies want to see a return on their investment. If companies like Humanoid Wake are supporting College Wakeboarding, and helping make this level of the sport possible for you, wouldn't you want to support them in return?
Going to an outside brand doesn't much benefit anyone but their company.

Also, reaching out to all the brands already supporting College Wakeboarding, will make your conversation and pitch much easier. They have already spent money and time investing in you. SO GO CUT A GREAT DEAL!

Back to the return on Investment!
This is everything, we can't say it enough. Sponsors want to see a return on investment. We deal with this everyday, every year. Your team, when pitching to a sponsor, must think of this answer before even approaching. "How is your club going to benefit the sponsor?"

1. Getting team product is huge. Think of your club as viral marketing. If you purchase 6 Pro-Tec helmets for the club, that will stay in the club for 3 years, think of how many riders will get to try out a Pro-Tec Helmet? That is extremely important to a company.
Each year you get new members and lose a few, but each year, those helmets benefit more and more riders.

2. Team rider orders are next. Make sure to get some club product for sure, but after that, have a team order with the company. Place 1 order each semester to make it easy. This way you have 1 payment and 1 shipping address. Remember, wakeboard companies are small and making things easy on them, makes them happier.
Team orders are a direct ROI! This is you doing your part as a club.

Social Media! 
You have your banner, you have your club shirts with logos on them, you have your new gear....now show it off!!! Every chance you get, post photos, email them to the company, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter....post, post, post!
Don't forget to tag the brand as well! They need to see you giving them love in return. All your photos you post should have @humanoidwake or @elevatedclothing on them (yes those are just examples).

Give back to the community!
Practices are important and so is competing. However, there is a lot more time in the year than these few weekends. Team up with your local dealership or cable park and offer help, clinics, fun events, clean up, volunteer work. It won't cost your club anything, but your cable park, boat dealer, and all your new found sponsors will love you for it. The first thing we said was use your resources. So use your time to give back. This in turn will have more positive exposure for your club and your supporters.

We hope this helps you. Please email us if you need more help from us as we understand this is just scratching the surface.

Good Luck!

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