Here in New England, you know it's fall when the air becomes cool and crisp as the leaves change color. While it's a beautiful time of year on its own, the fall is somehow missing something when we leave nature to her own devices. It's not truly fall until we pair the majesty of nature with the poetry of humanity. I'm referring, of course, to football.
To my eternal embarrassment, the powers that be at Boston University terminated football in 1997. But fear not-- the pigskin tradition continues, and the magic of fall lives on in BU's intramural flag football league. Here, about once a week, 10-15 full time MBA students gather to exhibit their guile and managerial prowess as they're chased about by tireless undergrads, all of whom seem to have just rolled out of bed for the evening kickoff.
For the past two years I've had the honor of organizing the 2013 MBA intramural football team, “SMG Tools.” Last fall marked an auspicious debut, as we won our division and made a playoff appearance. This year, we weren't so fortunate, and although we failed to qualify for the playoffs, we learned many valuable lessons about sharing, punctuality, and what it means to be a true friend.
By now we've also learned a great deal about the rules well. If you like rules, you'll love intramural flag football at BU. You've played flag football before, but not like this! Be forewarned if you're thinking about blocking or playing any kind of meaningful defense, because the eagle-eyed undergrad officials will call you on it. Hilariously, they'll also fail to call pretty obvious things like actual tackles.
Once you learn the rules (again, this takes about two seasons) and more importantly, that no one, especially the officials, really knows or understands them all (this part takes about 5 minutes), intramural football is actually really fun. Last fall it was a great way to unwind, however temporarily from the madness of the Integrated Project, and this year it's been a great way to stay in touch with classmates who no longer share the same schedule.
Now that it's all over, I'm not sure how fall next year, or any future fall, will really be complete. I'll manage, somehow, if only because I know that Sunday evenings, down on Nickerson Field, there will be another group of future MBAs out there chasing down undergrads, confronting befuddled referees, and winning games, all while remembering one thing:
Sam Cecala is a second year MS-MBA. Previously he's worked in entertainment, specialized publishing, and family governance. He once spent half an hour as a guest on a talk radio show alongside former Washington DC mayor Marion Barry and appears in the final episode of Arrested Development.