By Kyra Caffrey || Contributing Writer
Intramural basketball is one of the few activities at Franklin & Marshall where students from almost every different facet of our campus are brought together. Groups who would not typically interact with each other meet in Mayser Gymnasium each week to voluntarily participate in activities outside of the realm of their specific social circle.
For anyone who is a leader or member of any type of group on campus, you know how difficult it can be to get an F&M student to willingly participate in an extracurricular that will not add value to their resume. Yet, each year students wait in anticipation for the start of the intramural season. Multiple teams not only sign up for intramurals but continue to show up throughout the multi-week season. There are rivalries that continue year after year, as well as students who play just to spend more time with their friends.
This spring’s intramural basketball season is off to a strong start. One team to keep your eye on is the Toon Squad. In their first game of the season, two members, Casey Shader ‘26 and Zach Burelle ‘25 of the Toon Squad ended up playing for their competitors who didn’t have enough members. Then, in their second game of the season which took place on Wednesday, February 15th, the Toon Squad played a team composed of the F&M Football Coaches and won by a significant margin. Shader stated, “we had three-pointers raining down, especially from Andre Scott ‘24 and Bryan Moussako ‘26. They were making threes all game. I want to say we had about 15 three-pointers during the whole game.”
Toon Squad member Casey Shader ‘26 stated, “I have very high hopes for this season as the Toon Squad has put together a very strong team. Last season our team lost in the championship, so we have a bit of a chip on our shoulder.” It is clear that the team is back for redemption this season as Shader states that “the team and I play together often in the gym and have our sights set on the championship.”
At a small liberal arts school that does not have a big Division I football team to create unity and pride amongst the student body, I wonder if, in some sense, intramural basketball has become the sporting activity that our student body has rallied behind. As best stated by Owen Sobel ‘24, “intramural sports is a time and place for friends that feel like family to come together and put their blood, sweat, and tears towards a common goal that’s bigger than oneself.”
Maybe it is the sense of a common goal, or maybe it is because intramurals provide a stress-free environment for students to escape from the stress of college, but either way, I think intramural basketball is more important to the student body than we may realize.
Senior Kyra Caffrey is a Contributing Writer. She can be reached at email@example.com.