Students connect through intramurals


It’s important to mix up your exercise routine. These students play intramural inner tube water polo in the Wellness Center pool. 

Skyler Jackson, Sports Editor (He/Him)

Whether you were a former varsity athlete in high school or have never played organized sports before, joining an intramural league could prove to be an excellent decision for you.

College is a big transition for many incoming first-year students, and doing an intramural sport could be one way to help with that transition and make it easier.

Courtney Berntsen, the competitive sports coordinator at South Dakota State University, said that recreational sports are an excellent way for students to unwind and take their minds off academics. It’s also a great way to help students balance their academics with their social lives.

“There are so many benefits to intramural sports,” Berntsen said. “Just to get your mind off of whatever may be stressing you out, it’s a great way to just come and relieve some of that stress.”

Berntsen added that intramural sports could also help improve students’ mental and physical health, as they allow them to get involved, meet people and make new friends.

The Miller Wellness Center offers an intramural activity for just about everyone this year. On top of the usual popular leagues, many non-athletic tournaments and fantasy leagues will be done virtually throughout the fall semester.

“We have your typical sports like flag football and basketball, but it also doesn’t mean you have to be physically active,” Berntsen said. “So even if they’re choosing not to be active, they can still participate in the intramurals.”

Some new additions to this semester’s lineup are an UNO card game doubles tournament Nov. 22, a bracket tournament for The Bachelorette TV show, which starts Oct. 19 and runs every Tuesday, and a costume nerf war on Halloween.

Recreational sports took a hit last year because of the pandemic. Some leagues and tournaments were not held, and many others had to reduce teams and participants. Berntsen said that she’s glad that intramural sports will be making their return to normal this semester.

“As of right now, we plan to go forward with a non-COVID-19 season,” Berntsen said. “But I can’t say that that will not change in the future.”

With the fall semester fast approaching, Berntsen recommends that students interested in any intramural sports this fall register as soon as possible, because some leagues and tournaments fill up quickly. Registration for intramural sports is done online via FusionIM, and registrations open Monday, Aug. 23.

“Getting our word out to all students is what we’re looking to do,” Berntsen said. “And because intramurals are free, [we’re] trying to give them a time to just let go of that stress and separate their personal life from everything else that’s going on.”

Fall leagues


Flag football






One-day tournaments

Sand volleyball

Spikeball (two-day)

Table tennis- doubles

Costume nerf war

Doubles UNO card game

Fantasy leagues

College pick ‘em

NFL pick ‘em

Bachelorette bracket

Bowl game pick ‘em