Intramurals provide more than physical activity for students

Rebecca Watts

Let the games begin. One way Missouri Southern offers students campus involvement opportunity is through Intramural sports.

“About 90 percent of the people I come into contact with are in my daily involvement here on campus, [is because of Intramurals],” said Eric Norris, director of Intramural Sports.Norris and others said the Intramural activities provide the experience, exercise and the relationships students and faculty appreciate.

Dr. Brad Kleindl, dean of the school of business administration, is one of the 10 to 15 faculty members who take part in the progam.

Kleind began playing racquetball in 1983 while living in Iowa. Since 1986, he has participated in the Southern Intramural racquetball games.

“It’s a great chance to play with the students and faculty and have some fun,” said Dr. Kleindl.

The Intramural program is organized almost completely by the participants.

When it comes to team involvement, a representative/manager of the team meets with Norris to plan practices and games.

Individuals wanting to join a sport on their own are known as “free agents” and placed on teams needing additional players.

Norris said , the experience is just as good, for individuals as well as teams.

“Even if you’re by yourself, you’re still competing against others, and therefore getting that bond and relationship that way,” Norris said.

Just how involved are students in the Intramural program?

For flag-football alone, there are usually 100-150 participants, which is about 10 to 15 teams.

An event planned for Saturday, Oct. 14, “Washers,” which is a horseshoes equivalent, has been planned because of its popularity during Campus Craze.

As much as the Intramurals are participated in, Norris said participants are procrastinators.

“I find the day of the deadline is when everything gets turned in,” Norris said. “Everyone waits to the last minute.”

The expected off-campus tournaments this semester are mini-golf, par-3 golf and bowling. Participants must pay for these events with the exception of the mini-golf tournament.

Norris said he would like to cover the cost for all of the off-campus events, but the Intramural program is a self-sufficient service with a modest budget.

“We’re student life, we’re student activities based.” Norris said. “I believe the time students spend outside of the classroom is just as important as the time they spend in the classroom.”

Norris emphasized how not all Intramural sports are sports. Non-athletic events include a Playstation showdown, a hot dog eating competition and a chili cook-off.

Norris said there should be Intramural events everyone can relate to each year.

Through out the semester, Intramurals provide social occasions which lower tension levels among the student body.

“It’s a time for friends and fellowship,” he said. “You can only read books so much, you gotta do other things, and that’s where we come in. That’s the best thing we offer students.”

For more information contact Eric Norris at 659-5427 or email him at [email protected]