Diving to his left, he stretches out his body in a vain attempt to reach the hard spike delivered by the opposing team. Sand flies up around him as the volleyball bounces on the ground and rolls solemnly away. Slightly flustered, Noah Brown bounces back on his feet with a smile and a laugh, exclaiming to the other team “next time, buddy.”
Walking down the sidewalk between Bergsaker and Solberg, you might find Brown calling out to passers-by, even those he’s never met, attempting to intrigue others to join his team.
“I sometimes enter events without a team put together and then find people the day of,” Brown said. “I can teach you along the way.”
He’ll stroll up to a group of people, not knowing if they have ever been on a team before, shake their hands and, just after introducing himself, ask if they want to play on his sand volleyball team, racquetball team or one of the more than 30 activities he participates in yearly.
Brown embodies the quintessential intramural athlete as demonstrated by his winning of the Renegade Cow Scholarship for Intramurals, a scholarship founded by a former Augustana intramural team who participated under a number of events, always with the name “The Renegade Cows.”
Mark Hecht, Director of Recreational Services, describes the qualities needed to make a positive intramural player as having a strong desire to participate internally, an ability to make the experience better for everyone involved and the perceptiveness to include others.
Brown now sits in the company of the previous winners of the scholarship in the last two years —Rachel Nevin and Brad Ostendorf.
Hecht praised Brown’s uncanny ability to introduce people to events and make the intramural experience fun and positive. Hecht explained how Brown participates fully, meeting the standards of “spirit of play and participation” set by the scholarship committee.
Brown participated in a total of 35 different activities throughout the 2016-2017 school year, his favorite being volleyball and wolleyball. These activities take up enough time to keep Brown active from three to five nights a week.
Being this involved in intramurals takes a heavy amount of dedication, which, Hecht said, Brown is great at and always shows up prepared and organized.
“It’s a great way to meet people,” Brown said. “It feels like you actually knew someone that you didn’t know [in the brief time that you are playing intramurals].”
“Noah’s demeanor and attitude are very welcoming and very including,” senior Shay Norris said. “He’s never afraid to say hi, sit next to someone and then include them in an intramural.”
He seems to be everywhere, most likely because he’s always around the Elmen Center.
When you see Brown around campus, striding back and forth to shake hands with new people, maybe ask him if he has an idea for an intramural team you could try. Chances are the answer will be yes.
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