Student Life

Image of U-M Rugby players at expo

As students flock back to campus, they’re settling into new schedules and living quarters, the usual expectations for college. But for those who want to add even more adventure to their learning experience, Recreational Sports awaits their call. A Rec Sports Expo is taking place on Sunday, September 6, 2015 from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at Palmer Field, and it is a great time to meet and find out more info about Club sports and the department.

Club Sport teams currently are recruiting participants who want to add physical activity and competition to their routine. The 31 Club Sports offer a chance to learn a new sport, be part of a team, and represent Michigan while competing against other universities. Currently 1,650 members of the University community participate in the Club Sports Program.

We have a wide range of instructional and competitive opportunities, with an emphasis on student leadership, organization and team management. Those who choose this path have rich experiences at the University. -Recreational Sports Director Michael Widen.

One of the advantages Recreational Sports Club teams have over college varsity sports is ownership of the program. Participants dedicate themselves not only to competition, but to governance of the team.

“Club Sports members have pride of ownership and learn how to handle a small business. They are personally invested and willing to match the competition level seen in varsity teams. That is rare,” said Head Coach of the University of Michigan Men’s rowing team Gregg Hartsuff, who has produced Olympians, as well as a winning team at the 2015 World University Games in Chungju, South Korea.

The Men’s Rowing Team has the most championships among Michigan’s club sports. Additionally, four rowing team members were recruited for the 2015 U.S. Rowing Men’s team that he coached, and they each brought home the gold medal in the men’s eight in South Korea.

“The Universiade was an amazing experience. Not only the racing, but the opening ceremonies - it was on par with a show put on for the Olympics,” said Hartsuff.

Coach Hartsuff finds a common trait among his team members -- they are extremely determined people. “They like to win and represent Michigan. They have a strong bond and encourage others to succeed. They discover they’re good, and together they take it to the next level.”

Early September is a time when men’s rowing and other club sports recruit students. If you are curious where you could take it in Recreational Sports, there are opportunities with club teams, as well as intramural sports and individual activities. See Recreational Sports for more information.