Intramurals gaining in popularity

Abbie Moeller

More students are turning to intramural sports as a diversion from classes and a stress outlet.

Intramural coordinator Garry Greenlee said participation in the sports has picked up over the past few years. Last year, more than 4,000 teams competed in the contests, he said.

“It’s a good outlet for people who enjoy sports and want to have a more structured, competitive opportunity [than pick-up games],” said Linda Marticke, also an intramural coordinator for recreation services.

Both Greenlee and Marticke said students enjoy being able to compete and socialize through intramurals. Greenlee said the co-ed recreational teams are not as competitive as the single-sex teams.

Greenlee also said students enjoy unusual sports, such as curling, that they may not have had the opportunity to play before.

“Curling is the most social event we’ve got,” he said.

Curling is a game played on ice in which two teams slide curling stones toward a central mark in a circle.

Besides curling, Greenlee said other unusual intramurals offered by ISU include inner tube water basketball, ragball, cards and the notorious broomball.

“The novelty of Iowa State is broomball at midnight,” he said.

Another way many students get involved in intramurals is by refereeing the games.

Brennan Fehr, freshman in electrical engineering, said he likes refereeing because it pays well for the amount of time he has to put into it.

“I got the idea of reffing because my older brother and cousins did,” he said.

Some students said one of the perks of playing intramurals is receiving an intramural T-shirt.

Megan Magill, sophomore in biology and Spanish, considers the shirt a status symbol.

“That’s the most prized possession on the Iowa State campus,” she said.

Adam Vobora, junior in industrial engineering, uses his intramural T-shirt to incite jealousy among his comrades.

“It’s a way to pick up chicks,” Vobora joked.

Sometimes, Marticke and Greenlee have to deal with bad attitudes and occasional cases of cheating, but they think intramurals are a way for students to take a break from schoolwork.

“I like watching people laugh and smile and have fun,” Marticke said.