Opinion: The value of intramural sports

By Brett LaBore

It is no surprise that people like to play sports and that sports as a whole are treasured here in America. One way to play sports is through school. Many students like to play high school sports and are one of the more popular things to do. But it is esti­mated only 3.5 percent of high school boys basketball participants end up playing at an NCAA school.

It is hard to play an NCAA sport at any level in any sport, particularly at the Division I level. There are so many good high school athletes who don’t go on to play sports in college. This can be for many reasons with one of them being the difficulty of getting to that next level.

That is why intramural sports for all colleges and even some high schools are so important. It gives students a chance to get as close as you can to playing college sports. Intramurals involves referees, official rosters, rules, standings and more. There is official training for referees and every player has to turn in medical paperwork and waiver sheets.

This creates an environ­ment where intramurals can be extremely competi­tive. I’ve seen teams here at Bethany recruit extremely hard when it comes to team members because they want to have the best team. They try to find the best possible talent Bethany has to offer. They both play with their friends and against their friends.

But why does this all matter? Why find a good team like that and go through all this work? It’s because intramural sports let people do things they’ve never done before. If someone has never played basketball before they can put together a team and compete.

It doesn’t matter what skill level a person has or how much experi­ence they’ve had play­ing that particular sport. Anybody can play any intramural sport. That’s what makes them so addicting–the chance to play a sport one has never played. Intramu­rals are a chance to give someone the time of their lives, a rush they’ve never felt before.

It’s different from a pickup game in basket­ball where you call your own fouls or a football game where you play two-hand touch. Don’t get me wrong, those can be fun. But intramurals give you a professional setting with referees and playoffs, something that intrigues people like me.

There have been three intramural seasons so far at Bethany. The fall is arguably the most popu­lar season when it comes to intramural sports. So far there has been sand volleyball, football and basketball. Intramural sand volleyball started on Wednesday, Sept. 7. Then, football ran through Octo­ber starting on Monday, Oct. 3. Finally, basket­ball started recently on Monday, Nov. 7.

Another way that intramurals are valued is because they bring people together and are an extracurricular activ­ity for students. They give students a chance to get out of their dorm rooms and compete on a nightly basis with friends and fellow classmates. There are times when not everybody knows every­one else on their team. This leads students to meet new faces and to interact with people they otherwise would not have. Intramural sports have been a great first activity where freshman students get involved.

Maybe you’ve heard a buzz around campus lately and that might be due to the fact that intra­mural basketball was going on. Basketball is one of those sports where it’s easy to get a team and start. That may be the reason why basketball is one of the more popular intramural sports.

Intramural sports on campuses are not only fun, but competitive. Teams and captains go to great lengths to achieve both of these aspects. Intramurals are one of the few things that brings people together in a competitive, fun and encouraging atmosphere inviting all people to join. That is something you can count on.

Source: ncaa.org


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