Our Intramural department offers over 50 sports every year to our students and faculty on campus. As one of the largest intramural programs in the nation (Yay ISU!), we had 4898 teams or 23,500 individual participants this last academic school year. Those numbers are amazing, we love that so many of our students play intramurals! But with great numbers come great responsibility. We are here today to shed some light on the scheduling that happens behind the scenes.
Every intramural game, match, or tournament that is played has to be scheduled beforehand. There has to be referees, supervisors, facility space, and teams to face off in order for a game to even happen. We caught up with Nathan Pick, our Intramural Coordinator to find out more scheduling woes and how us intramural participants can make it easier.
What is the process involved in scheduling a sport?
When scheduling a sport, especially the bigger ones like flag football and broomball, we start with the team’s conflicts. We do not use a computer program to schedule, we do it all manually. Although it is a little more time consuming, we believe by scheduling teams by hand, it allows us work around conflicts better; giving that many more people the opportunity to play.
How many hours (what percentage) of your work week is dedicated to scheduling teams, employees, or facilities for Intramurals?
For Russ and Linda’s jobs, they spend anywhere from 80 to 90% of their week scheduling sports teams. I work with our referees training, scheduling, and overseeing them. During the school year I spend about 50% of my time scheduling my refs.
What could intramural teams and participants do to make the scheduling process easier?
When teams originally register for intramurals, they have to record the conflicts of when they are unable to play. A lot of time, we will have team captains only write down their personal conflicts but not check with their entire team. It would be a huge help if team captains and teammates check with one another before recording their conflicts. It would help our staff with less reschedules and allow us to better serve all of our intramural participants.
So there you have it. The crazy life that is scheduling in intramurals. Huge shoutout to Nathan, Russ, and Linda: our professional staff who make all this possible. They do all they can to make intramurals a blast for everyone who participates. And something tells me that with just under 5,000 different participating teams last year, they do a pretty good job. If you want to join the next Intramurals sports coming up, check out our website!