Dodgeball club playing same old game

By Bryan Kennedy

The kids picked last in elementary school dodgeball games now have a chance to redeem themselves.

The UK Dodgeball team is playing the same old game, just in a larger gym.

Errol Strauss, the club’s leader and one of the founders, said the group started from simple boredom and the love of childhood dodgeball.

“We just wanted something to do,” said Strauss, an economics senior. “We watched the movie ‘Dodgeball’ and felt that it was something that we could do.”

That something Strauss and his friends began is now a club that includes about 100 players, 35 of which are due-paying members.

At the beginning of each meeting, players line up on the baseline of Alumni Gym, and the team captains pick their team members one by one. It’s a throwback to grade school for those who want to yield to their inner child and launch a rubber ball at a classmate.

The UK Dodgeball team doesn’t just compete against itself; they also have a co-ed team that competes in tournaments against other schools. Tomorrow, the team will host a five-team tournament in the Seaton Center.

The tournament features teams representing Marshall University, Western Kentucky University, Saginaw Valley State University and Grand Valley State University.

To prepare for the tournament, players have been diving for catches and dipping and lunging to steer clear of being hit during practice sessions.

This game is not exactly for the weak and those not very fleet of foot.

“This game is not easy, you’ll bust a nose every once in awhile,” said Michael Poplin, an engineering junior.

From these practices, 15 players are selected as the team that will compete in tournaments throughout the year. But the others participants aren’t necessarily left against the wall defenseless. They still play in open tournaments like the 6-on-6 tournament that’s scheduled for this spring and are able to come back every week to play.

The club hosts an open practice every Wednesday at 6 p.m. in Alumni Gym for anyone interested in joining the team. For more information, visit the Web site for UK Dodgeball (