New Intramural Playoff Format Makes Debut
The 2016-2017 school year has kicked off and so have the annual Andrews University intramurals. Having both soccer and softball intramurals going on gives students lots of opportunities to get involved. Mauricio Schiavenin (Grad Student, Seminary) is in charge of intramurals, and he has added a new twist to the tournaments. There is now a new arrangement of the league which is better for players, and offers players who lost in years prior a chance to redeem themselves.
Previously, intramurals had been set up in a way that had all teams battling for one cup, and the way to get the cup was similar to most soccer tournaments (UEFA Champions League, Copa America, Europa, World Cup, etc.). First, you have to make it out of the group stages. Next you challenge multiple opponents until you made it to the finals. If you win, the cup is yours. This is a good process and it works well. But redemption is even better, simply because it allows for more opportunities to remain involved. There are times when a team might have a bad day, which could result in a loss, and then the team is out for good. However, it is different this year for teams participating in the University’s intramurals. They have the Andrews Championship, Andrews Cup, and Andrews Super Cup.
This year they had group stages, which are over now and four teams from each group moved on to the playoffs. However, what makes it interesting is that the teams that were eliminated from the Andrews Championship are automatically placed in the Andrews Cup. Also, the four teams that don't make into the semi-finals of the Andrews Championship will be placed the Andrews Cup as well. Then these six teams will play each other once, and then the team that finishes in first place is the winner of the Andrews Cup. This gives teams a chance to try to get things right again. What makes it even more exciting is that the winners of both the Andrews Cup and Andrews Championship will play the Super Cup final.
Some might say that this is not fair because a team that deserves to sit back and watch might potentially make their way to the Super Cup. Nevertheless, I think that this new intramural format is better for the players and teams as a whole. This new system allows teams to fix their mistakes and progress. It will also have these teams come back stronger than ever. In the old system, due to the fact that the league is so short, some teams did not have enough time to fix their mistakes. If the league were to go on for the whole year then this process of “redemption” would be considerably more unfair. But because there are time constraints, the redemptive element evens the playing field.
The chance to play again will not only allow teams to prove their winning abilities to each other but to their fans as well. I reckon that on the day of the Super Cup there will be more supporters than they have ever seen in a final before. There will be so much hype and tension that will be settled on the field that night. The matches that have been played so far have been great and I am sure the rest will be too.
In conclusion, I think the new arrangement of the league is better for players. This will be a very interesting time for soccer players. There will be moments of brilliance and heartbreak, but it is all for the love of soccer; which is why every result this year will be remarkable and even worth the redemption that everyone is looking forward to.