The University of Chicago Centennial CataloguesThe University of Chicago FacultyLife on the QuadsUniversity and the CityThe Presidents of the University
Life on the Quads
A Centennial View of
the Student Experience at the
University of Chicago
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Intramural awards.

Intramural awards.

Physical Culture and Athletics

Many of President Hutchins's critics charged that competitive sports were a vital part of the educational process. Hutchins agreed entirely, and pointed to the participatory nature of intramurals as evidence that athletics were alive and well at the University of Chicago. The sportsmanship, leadership development, and competitive spirit that sports inspired were adequately covered, Hutchins believed, without involvement in what he considered the nearly professional level of major intercollegiate athletics.

Student interest in intramural athletics remains exceptionally high. Self-supporting club sports for graduate and professional students attract enthusiasts of rugby, mountain climbing, weightlifting, and other activities. On average, about three-quarters of the student body participates in IM or club sports, with little evidence of decline. In the winter of 1991, a record 106 teams competed in intramural basketball, exceeding by far the number of students who attended varsity basketball games. In their support for intramural sports, it seemed, the University's students had confirmed their allegiance to the Hutchins ideal.

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