Brooms Up: Quidditch lands at Boise State

Brooms Up: Quidditch lands at Boise State

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Cody Finney / The Arbiter

By Tasha Adams, Managing Editor, and Katie Johnson, Staff Writer

Boise State University of 1910 University Drive was proud to say it was a football school, thank you very much. It was the last school you’d expect to be involved in anything mysterious … or magical. But if the newly-founded Boise State Quidditch team has anything to do with it, that will all change.

The first team meeting, organized by Quidditch Captain Stew Dirflot, was held Saturday. As muggles slowly gathered, Tasha Adams and Katie Johnson from The Arbiter grabbed their Rita Skeeter pens and looked to investigate further.

Meeting topics ranged from becoming an official Boise State team to mascot options and the logistics of Muggle Quidditch.

“(You) use brooms, under your crotch,” Dirfolt said.

Following the meeting was an impromptu practice, or rather a set of drills that had the players running around the intramural field on broomsticks and trying to hit each other with a bludger or passing a quaffle.

Muggle Quidditch, based on the sport played in the Harry Potter series, is a full-contact sport (as proven when sophomore Kym  Couch, freshmen Kristine Trouten and Cynthia Magana all crashed together and Couch’s glasses suffered) with obvious variations from the books–the most obvious being the lack of flying around on broomsticks. Since none of our Broncos are known wizards, players instead run around the field, or pitch, holding the broomstick between their legs with one hand while passing the quaffle, dodging the bludger or snatching the snitch with the other hand.

According to the International Quidditch Association’s (IQA) website, the sport has been described as “a cross between rugby, dodgeball and tag, which is a good approximation.”

Yes, Quidditch has an international association. Which is actually how the sport has spread so rapidly and how a few of the Boise State players heard about it.

Wesley Koster, 20-year-old junior majoring in environmental science, was one of the ten people to show up for the meeting. He explained how he had visited friends at UC Santa Cruz over the summer and saw his first Quidditch game there.

“I knew about the snitch … some guy dressed in yellow,” Koster said of his previous knowledge of the sport.

Couch, one of the more active participants of the day said she has friends who have been playing in other parts of the country.

“My friend is a captain in Arizona and I have friends in Florida that play … One of my friends got to go to the Quidditch World Cup in New York,” said Couch, who is studying psychology and political science.

She and Dirflot met after she spotted him wearing a Gryffindor-colored scarf in class and she asked him if Boise State had a Quidditch team. Dirflot spent the next three weeks doing research in order to form a team at Boise State and trying to raise interest, including passing out the flyers that attracted most of the attendees.

The Boise State Abraxans (a gigantic breed of mythical wind-horses) are just getting started. Practices are every Sunday at 2 p.m. at the intramural field and everyone is welcome.

Quidditch Terms:

  • Chasers- Responsible for scoring goals with the quaffle
  • Beaters- Responsible for throwing bludgers at other players
  • Keepers- Responsible for defending the goals
  • Seekers- Responsible for snatching the snitch
  • Snitch Runner-Responisible for holding the snitch and using any means necessary to not get caught. Not a part of either team.
  • Bludgers- Dodgeballs used to disrupt the flow of the game by “knocking out” other players
  • Quaffle- A volleyball used to score goals
  • Snitch- Tennis ball inside a yellow sock tucked inside the wasitband of the snitch runner

 

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