As the spring semester draws to a close, seniors of all majors begin to count down the days to graduation and freedom. However, not all are looking forward just to summer and graduation. There is a good number of people that look forward to the spring semester’s flashball tournament held every year, but this year the intramurals have something new in store for the campus.
To the dismay of many, but hope to some, flashball was not on the schedule of this year’s calendar for the spring; instead, flag football was going to make an appearance. Intramurals director Chris Rotty thought it was time to try something new and took a risk introducing something out of the ordinary for the Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University Prescott campus. “Flashball is not gone,” Rotty said reassuring campus, “I promise.” Flashball was something unique to ERAU, but it is always good to try new things.
Following the NIRSA rulebook, flag football has become a huge hit here on campus. With 16 teams signed up, it is a competitive sport that started on March 26 for the first time. Rotty laughed when asked how it went. “Well, both the players and the referees were learning the game as things progressed throughout the night.”
Playing four vs. four with 12 minute halves allows more games to be played a night compared to the longer flashball games that lasted late into the cold nights of spring. “Flag football is more universal and played by many universities across the country,” Rotty said, “Daytona even has done it in the past, but not comparing us to them.” This sport is not to replace flashball, but the idea is making a club that would hopefully, one day, compete against other schools.
Flashball is not gone and is scheduled to return in the fall for the annual flashball league that happens every year, but the athletic department has a plan lined up. Using the idea of alternating semesters of flashball to flag football will allow variety rather than the same semester after semester of the same sports. Flag football is also joined by the Ultimate Frisbee league as well which Rotty hopes will restart the Ultimate Frisbee club.
The idea also will try and help increase the number of participants for every intramural league. By only having one semester of flashball or flag football a year will really encourage people to get out there and enjoy the time that they have with the sport.
Of course the intramural department has been getting waves of opinions on both sides of the aisle when it comes to the disappearance of flashball, but that is life. Whether you support the change or oppose it, the intramural department would like to hear the comments and suggestions of everyone. The department wanted to try something new and at this point in time it looks like flag football is in for a good long run. The league plays on Tuesdays and Thursdays and there are always teams looking for more people to fill the rosters. Contact the intramural office for more information and join the fun that hopefully makes all the leagues better in the end.