The University of Southern Maine’s intramural sports program is one of the best-kept secrets at the school.

Each semester, various recreational and competitive intramural sports and activities are put on display, much to the enjoyment of the masses that simply just want to have fun without having to worry about the nuances of a being a full-time student-athlete.

“Each semester we try and offer a variety of sports and activities such as: flag football, dodge ball, basketball, ping-pong tournaments, Xbox 360 tournaments, volleyball, whiffle ball, floor hockey and fantasy football to name a few,” said Bob Prince, the assistant coordinator for recreational sports.

While some sports might have to advertise extensively to get games going (ping-pong has a Facebook group set up for tournaments), activities like basketball, flag football, and volleyball usually have strong followings.

“Some sports and activities attract more people,” said Prince. “We just had an Xbox 360 tournament that attracted a high number of people.”

Flag football is usually played in the fall, while floor hockey, basketball and volleyball happen sometime between winter and spring.

With the vast arrangement of sports and activities to pick from, students at USM can choose whatever they fancy.

“Our numbers have increased with regards to participation over the last 4 years,” said Prince. “The other nice thing is that it’s not just the same group of people for each sport or activity, but a much more diversified group, which is still one of our major goals (in the recreation department), intramurals are offered to all students, resident or commuter, staff, and faculty.”

Some students prefer to take it to the next level and create their own club team. USM currently has 4 club teams: sailing, volleyball, cycling, and a dance Team.

The club volleyball team, which was established in 2003 is a member of the New England Collegiate Volleyball League which includes 40 teams from across New England and New York.

The dance team regularly performs at basketball games during half-time, and has created a popular following.

To someone new to USM, the process of finding an intramural program to your liking is fairly easy.

On the Gorham campus, the easiest way is to stop by room 109 in the Costello Sports Complex. There, you will be able to learn about the all the different programs that USM has to offer.

If you find yourself so lucky as to not be in Gorham, you can simply log onto the university’s athletics website and go to the recreational sports page.

Although it hasn’t been updated in the last couple of years, you can view all the current programs as well as fill out a team submission form for the activity of your choice.

If you have any other additional questions, you can call the office at 780-5649.

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