UCCS and Special Olympics host flag football league

2 October 2018

Brian Blevins

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    UCCS is hosting a flag football intramural league in partnership with the Special Olympics of Colorado.

    As in past years, UCCS is partnering with Special Olympics of Colorado to help the organization achieve its goal of fostering support for persons with intellectual disabilities, through hosting an intramural flag football league.

    The open participation event will have scrimmages every Sunday at 6:00 p.m. at Alpine Field, and run until the middle of October. The intramural league concludes with a state tournament on Nov. 3 at Colorado State University in Fort Collins.

    Students who wish to play are able to sign on as unified partners and take part in the mentoring and development of athletes with intellectual disabilities. There is also the opportunity to volunteer and help host tournaments and other events.

    Michelle Pewters, the manager of Special Olympics of Colorado’s southeast division, said the need for partners is never completely satisfied.

    “We could always use volunteers to come out and be on the league and help out with tournaments here in Colorado Springs,” said Pewters.

    For those hoping to log extra volunteer hours, there are also coaching opportunities available.

    “There’s something for everyone,” said Pewters. “We’ll make it work.”

    Seth Krebill, Special Olympics of Colorado’s young athletes coordinator, added that “the most important thing is getting the word out,” so that as many students and community members as possible can take advantage of being a part of the Special Olympics movement — something that has received relatively little press compared to other sports organizations.

    “Getting [students with intellectual disabilities] involved would be a dream, because they get to represent their college,” said Pewters.

    Pewters and Krebill hope to expand their current programs to include more than just flag football. A winter basketball league is in the works, along with a soccer league that would begin in the spring if it is able to get off the ground.

    The Special Olympics Colorado flag football league is a place for persons with intellectual disabilities to be just like everyone else in an environment that emphasizes their strengths, according to Pewters.

    “It’s promoting inclusiveness, and that’s the main thing,” said Pewters. “It’s focusing on ability, not disability, regardless of who you are.”