A losing Texas Longhorns football team may not only affect game attendance but also registration for intramural flag football, according to a Division of Recreational Sports official.
Between 2011 and 2013, the number of total registered teams for intramural flag football in the fall decreased 12.9 percent, from 387 to 337, according to Rec Sports. As of Monday, there are 284 teams registered for this season. Darci Doll, senior assistant director for Rec Sports, said the registration deadline has been extended to Friday to give teams more time to sign up.
Doll said the highest number of flag football teams in recent years was 416 in fall 2006, a few months after Texas’ national championship win at the Rose Bowl.
“When the campus community is excited about a certain sport, they want to be involved in it as more than just a fan,” Doll said in an email.
In an interview, Doll said, while fall flag football registrants have been declining, the popularity of intramural soccer has been increasing over the past four to five years. The number of total registered fall soccer teams has increased 5.2 percent, from 232 in 2013 to 244 this season, and is still rising, according to Doll.
Doll said the growth in soccer registrants could be a result of both the popularity of the summer’s FIFA World Cup in Brazil and the increase in prevalence of the sport across the state.
“We see more students who have enrolled in UT who have played recreational soccer all their lives,” Doll said.
Men and women are exposed to soccer more equally, Doll said, unlike football, which is primarily played by men.