The start of a new semester can mean many things for a college student, but for Oswego students who like to stay active and love playing sports, it means the return of intramural sports.  

Intramural sports are a great way to stay in shape and it provides the opportunity to students who aren’t playing intercollegiate sports to still play the sport or sports they love competitively, said Scott Harrison, assistant director of campus recreation. 

"I like playing intramural sports because it gives me a few hours a week to relax and not have to worry about school or work, while also staying active," student participant Kobe Van Duyne explained. 

Making connections is an important part of the experience, Van Duyne noted.

"My favorite part of playing intramural sports is the people that I have met and the memories that I have created," Van Duyne. "My favorite memories include winning an Intramural Championship T-shirt and making new friends playing intramural sports."

While some intramural leagues have already started, several more will start soon. These sports, with their deadlines, include the following:

Any students interested in participating in intramural sports would follow a sign up process before the aforementioned registration deadline dates. To start, a student must create an account on the IMLeagues website, and from there they can see all registration deadlines, explore divisions of each program and  message other students within the system if they do not have the required number of participants on their team.

In addition, students must be vaccinated to participate.

The use of IMLeagues is is a little bit different than the traditional process, Harrison explained. While normally friends in residence halls, fraternities and sororities, and other social circles might put teams together, the online process allows people to join teams if they don’t yet have that network and to form new bonds within the bounds of friendly competition.

Harrison said feedback students have given in the past show many benefits of playing intramural sports, including emotional and physical health, meeting new people and stress relief.

The most important thing about intramural sports is the sense of community it brings to a college campus, with men's, women's and co-recreational leagues. That sense of inclusion means you don’t necessarily have to be a superstar to participate. 

“You don’t have to be a former varsity athlete,” Harrison said. “There’s some degree of athleticism, but I would say that it isn’t the highest standard.” 

Harrison added that he is optimistic that the turnout and participation will be high after the pandemic limited the opportunities for such activities for the past 18 months.

For more information on available leagues, deadlines and expectations, visit the Campus Recreation website.

-- Written by Braylon Noble of the Class of 2022