With a picturesque campus on the beach, wild parties raging through Isla Vista every night and hoards of smoking hot chicks gallivanting around in miniskirts, UC Santa Barbara sports have historically taken a backseat. Soccer season can get pretty rowdy, but with the exception of a fall frenzy out at Harder Stadium, we have defined our sporting world through a different plane of athletic competition.

Though we may not pack the stands for our basketball boys in the Big West, the level of play I am referring to never fails to receive the support and participation of the entire student body. It allows athletes that left their playing days in high school to carry on the dream. It keeps our bros swoll and our ladies slim. And, most importantly, it has given me the creative freedom to erect a hoops collective known as “The Rimjobs.” If you’re still not on board, I’m talking about intramural sports.

For those of us who lack the size and skill to get it done on a Division I squad, intramural (IM) sports, a program run through the Recreational Sports Dept., offers the average baller an ideal medium to let loose the warrior spirit. And though I’ve only dabbled in a few IMs myself, I am quite confident that three years of active involvement in said sports teamed with a year working as Rec Sports’ most undervalued gym field supervisor qualifies me as a legitimate tour guide.

Instead of boring you with the logistics that are easily accessible at the IM office, I’m going to throw down the low down, so be forewarned. For starters, not to let down any eager freshman, but if you sign up a team with your dorm buddies, there’s a serious chance you will get owned — regardless of the sport. With legions of seasoned veterans lurking, don’t expect to rush in and make an immediate impact. But don’t fret, there’s always hope for redemption. Just look at the Rimjobs – from a team of back-alley bums to a B-League powerhouse, our annual reconstruction is a consummate example of persistence paying off.

If my intensity just freaked you out, don’t let it. One of the best things about IMs is that the vast majority of teams are out there just trying to have a good time. In fact, in certain sports, you will encounter a great many players that show up wasted and/or baked out of their minds, and for good reason. Take softball for example. How much more gratifying is it to blast a homerun when you barely have vision of the ball and feel no shame staggering around the base paths a la Kirk Gibson circa 1988? Furthermore, if you go into the game knowing you’re going to be stuck in right field, what’s stopping you from lighting up a blunt before or during the contest? If you’re doing the latter, try and be somewhat discreet.

Though most people are content with good, friendly competition, you will run into a fair few neon-shirt-wearing douchebags and incompetent referees that threaten to ruin your recreation. But never fear, as long you’re playing alongside your friends, it should be all good, win or lose – though, to be honest, the glory of winning is fucking sweet.