Categorized | Sports

IM sports seek improvements

Ben Blotner

Senior Sports Writer

Intramural (IM) sports have long been a way for students to relieve stress, socialize and have fun outdoors as a respite from the hectic scramble of college life. While not all students have been thrilled with the way these sports have been handled here at Wooster, IM Director Julius Higginbotham and the student directors of the program are working their hardest to make improvements where necessary to provide a competitive and well-organized IM program.

When asked about the strengths of Wooster’s IM sports program in its current state, Higginbotham acknowledged that there is a high level of enthusiasm from students and an overall positive atmosphere in the IM community.

“We do get good numbers [of participants]. People look forward to playing, and it’s competitive and fun for everyone,” he said. Student IM Director Eric Bulic ’19 said the program “brings people together” and mentioned that fraternities often use IM sports to meet and recruit new members.

As for possible areas of improvement, Higginbotham cited logistical issues, many of which can be solved by the IM athletes themselves. Disorganization is sometimes caused by team captains turning in their roster sheets after the deadline, forcing Higginbotham and the other directors to make late adjustments to the schedule. Another issue is that some aspiring team captains are unable to find enough interested friends to fill out their rosters, or they have difficulties getting these friends to actually come to the games. The IM directors have already created a future solution for this problem.

“We will begin creating an extra team for each IM season made up of the people who were unable to find team members,” said Higginbotham. This type of team will not be created for the current IM soccer season, but the rule will take effect shortly after.

Higginbotham stressed the use of social media as a significant method of communicating IM sports information and looks to expand the program’s online presence. On the Instagram account woosterintramurals, regular reminders are given about roster deadlines and significant IM events, something Higginbotham hopes will help to hold players and team captains accountable. Through social media, the directors also hope to alert students of possible incentives for winning IM tournaments, which have yet to be decided.

Another problem facing IM sports is the lack of available playing space on campus and the occasional lack of understanding of this issue by students.

“Everybody wants to play on the varsity field or the best spot available on campus, but people should be more adaptable,” Bulic said. According to Higginbotham, students “need to understand the lack of space” and be willing to play in locations that are “sometimes not ideal.” Location issues plagued IM softball last spring when the Kenarden quad, normally used for games, was shut down for construction, leading to very few games being played.

When asked what he would like students to know, Higginbotham stressed that students should not hesitate to ask questions and give feedback about the IM program.

“We want you [the student body] joining, participating, having fun, and we want feedback,” he said. “We’re all at Wooster to have a good social and academic life, and it’s a great way to stay active in your free time.”

Trying to build that sense of camaraderie is the main goal,” said Bulic. “It’s part of getting a full college experience.”

 

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