Ryan Comer, Broadside Correspondent

A new intramural sport is literally sweeping through college campuses. Quidditch, the beloved wizard sport in the Harry Potter series, is now accessible to Muggles: no magic needed!

Some of you may be wondering: “How do you play Quidditch without a flying broomstick?” I, myself was curious, so I sat down with the president of the Quidditch Club at George Mason University, Katie Dever, and executive board member Chloe Kingsley-Burt, and asked them.

They explained that the Muggle version of the game is actually very similar to the version in J.K Rowling’s books (albeit, without flying broomsticks). There are, as in a normal Quidditch game, seven players per team: three chasers, two beaters, one keeper and one seeker.

Bludgers are replaced by a more benign ball (a dodgeball), however, as the girls explained, it is still a contact sport.

“You can punch someone in the face and not be ejected,” explained Dever. However, “you will have to sit out for a penalty period.”

Indeed, the game sounds exciting, even more so when you factor in the Golden Snitch. Because of a shortage of actual flying Snitches, Muggle Quidditch uses a person (usually a track athlete, explained Kingsley-Burt) with a tennis ball in a sock attached to their back.

The teams’ seekers have to catch the tennis ball, “kind of like flag football,” explained Dever. What makes the Snitch so intriguing is that he can go anywhere on campus. “The Snitch could be here in the Johnson Center,” said Dever.

How popular is Muggle Quidditch, then? The girls explained that there are over 200 teams worldwide and around 70 in North America. There are already four non-Intercollegiate Quidditch Association affiliated teams at Mason (Gryffindor, Slytherin, Ravenclaw and Hufflepuff) with starting rosters.

The club has a Facebook group with around 65 members, so there is plenty of interest at Mason. However, the girls say that even more people would show interest if they were not “afraid of being thought of as a dorky kid.”

The group, at this point, is not an official club at Mason.

“We have plenty of people interested,” said Dever, “we just need a teacher sponsor.”

The girls plan on starting games in the spring, regardless of the club’s official status. Their overall goal, however, is to become affiliated with IQA and compete against other schools across the nation. In fact, there is even a World Cup that the team would compete in if it qualified.

If anyone is interested in joining the club, you can e-mail gmuquidditch@yahoo.com or search “GMU Quidditch” on Facebook.

“Don’t judge it,” said Dever. “It’s something fun.”