Raider Welcome: PLAY in the PARK

Students play sand volleyball at PLAY in the PARK at 8 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2019 at Urbanovsky Park. PLAY in the PARK was sponsored by Texas Tech's Intramural Sports/Rec Sports as a part of Raider Welcome Week.

Intramural sports can offer students a source of social interaction and competition outside of the classroom.

Along with this, there also are opportunities to officiate the games played.

Brett Jackson, assistant director of intramurals at Texas Tech, said intramurals are here to provide a comprehensive sports program for all students.

The basketball season just kicked off Sunday Jackson said. There will be games Sunday through Thursday from 5:30 p.m. to 11:30 p.m., but there will not be any games when Tech basketball is playing home.

Seven versus seven outdoor soccer leagues registration is open from Feb. 11 to Feb. 14, Jackson said. Softball’s registration will open late this month on Feb. 25. 

Intramurals mission statement is to “inspire community, develop students and unleash spirit,” Jackson said.

The components of Intramural sports include competitiveness, social and physical, Jackson said. Intramural sports offers a wide range of sports including team sports or individual sports and long-term or short-term seasons.

The two program values are participation and sportsmanship, Jackson said. Intramural sports creates a friendly, supportive environment for everyone to play.

“We want our participants to hold each other accountable when playing games,” Jackson said. “We want all of Texas Tech to have a mutual respect for each other, even when competing.”

Studies show that the more active and engaged a student is on campus the better they will do in class, Jackson said. As a student participates in intramural sports, they add value to their overall student experience.

“We want to be the number one option when students are choosing what to do outside of class,” Jackson said. “This is an opportunity to put down your phone and step out to do some physical activity.”

The most popular intramural sports are traditional sports like football, softball and basketball, Jackson said.

Intramural sports creates job opportunities for students, as it is a student run, student led program, Jackson said. They hire students for officials and supervisors. Officiating experience is not required for the job, but they do require a basic knowledge of the sport.

Tech Intramurals is active on Tech announce and social media, @TTUIntramurals, Jackson said. There are posters around Tech that also contribute to many repeated participants every year.

Jamie Kemp, program coordinator of Intramurals, said he oversees hiring, training and scheduling the officials for all sports.

Kemp makes sure that the students send in their school schedule and makes their work schedule around their availability, he said.

Working for Intramural sports can be a great start for those looking to officiate high school or college games, Kemp said. The students hired are not limited to just sports management, but there are students hired with majors like engineering or biology.

“It’s a good way to get your feet wet and gain management skills,” Kemp said.

The great thing about intramural sports is that it is not a continuation of a high school career, it is merely along the lines of a social interaction between other students, Kemp said.

“It doesn’t matter how good you are, it matters if you are having fun and have those social interactions,” Kemp said. “It’s important for students to get out of their home and take a break from their studies.” 

Justin Robins, a junior creative media studies major from Colorado, has been officiating intramural sports for three months.

Robins favorite thing about officiating is being able to watch people relive their glory days, he said. Some people are emotional and take the game seriously, which shows how much they love the game.

“Officiating helps me appreciate the game more and the coworkers are nice,” Robins said. “You have to pay attention, but you’re watching a sport that you enjoy, so even while you're working you can have fun.”

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