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Intramurals: Regional flag football tourney to hit Iowa City

BY PATRICK MASON | OCTOBER 28, 2011 7:20 AM

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For the sixth time in seven years, the University of Iowa will play host to one of eight regional intramural flag football tournaments at the Hawkeye Recreation Fields.

Fifteen teams from various states will compete at the tournament this weekend. The tournament is broken up into three divisions: men's (nine teams), women's (three teams), and co-rec (three teams). The top teams from each bracket will compete for a chance to represent their region at the national championships, to be held at Texas A&M in early January.

To be selected as a host, a school must submit a proposal to the National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association, the governing body of recreational sports. Eric Cohen, a graduate assistant for Recreational Services, said Iowa has been fortunate to win the bid to host the tournament over the past few years.

The number of teams entered this weekend is down from the 20 that participated last year. This is because the tournament is being played two weeks earlier than last year; many teams in the region — including the those at Iowa — haven't completed their intramural flag-football seasons and therefore do not yet have a campus champion.

"A lot of time, schools pay the registration fee for their campus champion to come here [to the tournament]," Cohen said. "But because the tournament is earlier this year, their seasons aren't over."

Iowa is one of the largest schools to host a flag-football regional, and there are many factors that need to be taken into account when choosing the time of year to host the tournament. Some of these include working the tournament schedule around Iowa's prominent varsity football program.

"We always prefer to have the tournament in November, but it wasn't feasible this year," said Thomas Schorer, the assistant director of intramural sports at Iowa. "The first two weekends of November are Iowa football home weekends, and the third weekend is the weekend of the Nebraska Regional. We don't want to compete with their regional tournament, as we have staff from our university that travels to their tournament and vice-versa."

Teams from Michigan, Nebraska, and Iowa will come to Iowa City for a chance at a national title. The scheduling, though, has caused the Hawkeyes to not field a men's team this year because their season won't end until next week. Iowa will be represented in the women's division by the Showstoppaz, and the co-rec bracket by the Bacon Show.

The Bacon Show has some experience in the tournament; the squad is now a co-rec team, but the women on the roster won last year's women's division. They added men to try their hand at this year's regionals.

"Going into the weekend, we plan to rely on our girls for insight and veteran leadership since they have both played in and won regionals," Bacon Show captain Tyler Johnston said.

The UI Recreational Services plans to continue hosting the flag-football tournaments in the future; Cohen said it's a great way to show off the campus and bring different people into the area.

"Having an opportunity to host this is great for us, because it gives the students on our staff and students throughout the campus to get more involved with National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association and Recreational Services on a whole," Cohen said.


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