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Focus on Athletics Needed

The recent closure of the turf Omnifield for all official uses has created a major disruptance to the intramural softball season.

Those of us who have played intramural, varsity, and club games on the turf have all known for a long time that the turf would need to be replaced sooner rather than later. Surely the Athletic Department and the MIT administration must have known this as well. The Athletic Department’s approach to repairing the turf, however, only seemed to postpone the inevitable, forcing the closure of the Omnifield at an inopportune moment.

Athletics are an important part of the quality of life at MIT, but field space for games like softball, ultimate, and football is in extremely short supply. Briggs Field has never been in great shape either. I cannot overstate the importance of athletics to the well-being of the student body at MIT; on a campus where many students might consider Starcraft to be a sport, we should be encouraged to be more physically active. Yet the opposite seems to be true here; those of us who do want to play team sports are often frustrated by a lack of field space.

The lack of field space on campus, and the resulting disruption to varsity and intramural sports, is yet another testament to the administration’s confused priorities and lack of concern for quality-of-life issues at MIT when not under media pressure. That a new undergraduate dorm can be built when there is already enough housing on campus for all undergraduates who want it, while there isn’t enough field space for existing intramurals, is unexplainable.

Bill Schneider G