Whether it be the fierceness of the playoffs in intramural basketball, or a team’s level of inebriation during broomball, the intensity that students bring to intramural sports is never lacking. The three intramural leagues currently in season currently are broomball, basketball, and indoor soccer.
While ferocity and is excitement are certainly present in all intramural sports, the focus often varies by sport. As captain of a sophomore broomball team, Kyle Kallman said that broomball is about cutting loose and letting your problems slide away.
“Broomball is about inebriation and letting go, not necessarily in a drunken way,” Kallman said. “People are so uncomfortable and unstable on the ice that they have to just cut loose from their uptight lives and slide around for a couple of minutes.”
Unlike some intramural sports, where the level of sportsmanship is known to sway more in favor of winning, sports like broomball and inner-tube water polo are typically more focused on having fun with one’s team.
“Playing rough, sloppy, and fierce is the spirit of broomball,” Kallman said. People fall on their butts, people get knocked around, some taunting is required, but it never leaves the realm of friendship.”
Despite the fun that Kallman said is present in broomball games, he goes to great lengths to ensure the passion is never lacking.
“I always give pump-up speeches to my team and remind them that playing with heart is more important than winning,” Kallman said. “In terms of intensity, I try and lead by example. I have never been a phenom of an athlete, but I always try to play hard and be a leader on the ice. I even made an instructional video to teach my team basic strategy.”
Kallman represents a spirited approach often seen in sports like intramural broomball and intramural soccer. Junior Aaron Chin, a two-time intramural champion in co-ed basketball, said that the intensity in intramural basketball is more focused around the desire to win.
“I don’t think there is a single player on the floor that comes out to lose,” Chin said. “That being said, it’s incredibly important to focus your intensity on the right things. I’ve seen situations devolve and student-athletes forget that it’s just intramurals.”
It seems that the more the game is focused around the desire to win, the more frequently students cross that line between playful intensity and bad sportsmanship between opponents.
“I know people get excited and sometimes look back and think, ‘Gee, should I have said that?’” Chin said. “A lot of things can be misinterpreted, so a good rule of thumb is to just think before you say something.”
Chris Starr, Director of Intramurals at Colorado College, sees the intensity as beneficial for the program and as a general overarching trait of Colorado College students in both extracurricular activities and the classroom.
In 2012, Colorado College ranked #12 in the Princeton Review category, Everyone Plays Intramural Sports.