(Not so) friendly competition

Intramural sports offer students the chance to be college athletes without the time commitment
Monday, July 28, 2008 | 2:05 p.m. CDT; updated 3:11 p.m. CDT, Monday, July 28, 2008
Favis Alhavbi, left, battles for the ball against Thiti Vanitbuncha at the MU World Cup soccer tournament on April 25 at Stankowski Field at MU. The Arabian Student Association won 3-0 against the Taiwanese Student Association. As part of International Week, the Mizzou International Coalition hosted the first ever World Cup soccer tournament where student associations competed for the title.

Even if you didn't expect to walk on as the next great starter for a Mizzou sports team or didn't participate in a high school team sport, you can still be a college athlete.

Intramural sports might offer you the chance to join a team or learn a new sport without having to commit to a vigorous workout schedule.

The MU Student Recreation Complex has many options for anyone looking to participate in team sports or even play individual sports. Kevin Mauerer, a rec sports supervisor and a senior at MU, said that with the number of sports offered, everyone can find a niche.

"Mizzou does offer most sports. Some sports that are offered are basketball, soccer, tennis, flag football, softball (slow pitch), volleyball (sand and hard court), and ultimate Frisbee is offered, including others that vary from year to year," he said. Students easily can get involved in intramural sports. As long as you're a member of the Mizzou rec complex (if you are enrolled in 12 of more hours, this membership fee is automatically included in your tuition), you can enroll in intramural sports. The schedules for all the leagues are posted on the Mizzou rec center's Web site,

You can also find sign up forms in the front of the rec center. Every league requires entry fees.

Depending on the season, different tournaments and leagues are offered.

Mauerer said this year's schedule will be thrown off a bit because of the resurfacing of Stankowski Field, which means some sports will be pushed back to late fall.

There also are ways to find competitors with the same skill level you have.

"People enjoy the competitive and also the recreational atmosphere," Mauerer said. "Depending on your skill level, you can enroll in different divisions depending on what you feel suits you best."

If officiating, rather than playing, piques your interest, there are also employment opportunities available with Mizzou RecSports Services. People with minimal experience can be involved with Mizzou RecSports as there are different qualifications for the jobs depending on an individual's skill level.

If you are interested in playing but don't know many people yet, you can still get involved without having to find people and create a team. There is a free agent list you can add your name to. The list is posted at Often, teams are looking for a few people to finish a roster, so the free agent list is a good way to get your name out there.

For those who shy away from team sports, there are also some individual sports offered.

MU senior Sarah Guarino, who has participated in intramural flag football, basketball and soccer, said the games give her the adrenaline rush she remembers from playing competitive sports in high school.

"I love the feeling of being part of a team and knowing that each person contributes to the outcome of the game," she said. "Also it's just something fun and different to do with friends."

Mauerer agrees that intramural sports are a nice way to get away from the stress that arises midsemester. "It's a great way to spend a study break and get some exercise."


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