IUSB team hosts and competes in collegiate Quidditch
By CECELIA ROEDER
A scarcity of Nimbus 3000 broomsticks in Muggle marketplaces might keep the IU South Bend Quidditch team grounded, but it doesn’t stop their tireless pursuit for the golden snitch.
A unique and playful part of J.K. Rowling’s “Harry Potter” series, Quidditch is pastime of the magical community. A mixture of Rowling’s imagination and other popular sports like football, basketball, soccer and rugby, Quidditch is an aerial contact sport involving revolving around four unique balls, hoops and the players themselves.
Quidditch has proven to be just as popular in real life as it is in the “Harry Potter” world. Since 2007, the International Quidditch Association (IQA) has organized and regulated Quidditch , creating rules and structure to the fictional sport. The IQA provides regular and season play to Quidditch enthusiasts around the world. According to the IQA website, there are currently 932 Quidditch teams in the United States, including 15 in Indiana.
The IUSB Quidditch team is IQA certified, and the only full-contact sport on campus. Now in its third year, the IUSB Quidditch team’s Facebook page reports 24 players on the “Official/Unofficial Roster,” with Assistant Professor of Archaeology and Social Informatics Josh Wells as club adviser.
Even the most stereotypical muggle can take part in Quidditch . “Some members have never read the books, and at least one has never seen any of the movies,” said IUSB Quidditch club secretary Amy Bartkowiak. “Anyone can play.”
A plethora of new rules and regulations have made the year a bit more challenging for the team. Boger explained how new rules, like requiring at least two of each sex on their field and a $50 per player fee for IQA membership place logistical and financial strain on the team.
“We have more guys than girls this year,” said Boger.
Making sure there are at least two males and females on the field can make substitutions tricky.
The cost of playing Quidditch is another burden on the team. The Quidditch Club has received help from the school to help cover the cost of membership, but Sarah Knowlton, Quidditch Club secretary, says the club is still “struggling.” While many expenses are covered and reimbursed, the members must spend their own money first and be reimbursed by the Bursar.
Boger said she paid $150 out of pocket to cover the cost of materials for their hoops.
The Quidditch Club hopes to be one of 60 collegiate teams to qualify for the World Cup this year.
“There are a lot of teams from the Midwest, it’s difficult to qualify,” Knowlton said.
The team will be traveling to Rockford, Ill. for the Midwest Regional Championship on Oct. 26 and 27.
What the team is really focused on right now, though, is the upcoming Quidditch tournament to take place Oct. 12 at River Crossing Campus Housing. The Third Annual Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore Memorial Quidditch Tournament will be hosting teams from colleges around the Midwest, including IU Bloomington, Ball State and The University of Michigan.
One community team will participate, as well as a Merc team. Knowlton explained that Merc teams are for individuals who want to play but aren’t part of a team, or whose team didn’t quality or isn’t attending.
To find out more about IUSB Quidditch, you can find them on Facebook at facebook.com/IusbQuidditch or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org