After a 38 year absence, the Intramural All-Points Competition will return to the University of Illinois Campus this fall. Any alumni who graduated prior to about 1980 will remember how much fun and exciting this competition was. Fraternities were awarded points for participating, competing in and winning intramural sports throughout the year and a giant trophy was awarded to the winner each spring. Thank Dr. Don “Rubo” Rubenstein ’80 for nudging the IFC and the Division of Campus Recreation to bring this great tradition back. A personal commitment from Rubo to fund a giant trophy for the winner probably helped.
The All Points Competition was the brain child of former Illini Swimming and Water Polo Coach E.J. Manley. He was looking for ways to get young men involved in more positive activities such as sports as a large influx of new students hit the University of Illinois Campus at the end of World War I. The first points competition took place in 1922 and continued until 1975. It took a while for the ATOs to get rolling but once we did, we were dominant. ATO Gamma Zeta won the competition six times, including five of the last nine years that it was contested. Competition between fraternities was fierce and exciting. Huge crowds showed for key “point” games, especially football and basketball. It was rumored in the mid 70’s that ATO rush qualifications included bench press, 40 yd dash times and “# of points” a potential member was expected to contribute. This competition made every “point” sport contest important. It was a lot of fun and loaded with great team building opportunities. However, competition, in the eyes of some campus leadership, had gone over the top and in 1975, the last trophy was awarded to ATO.
While the new version of the All Points Competition is a little smaller (offering Basketball, Football, Inner Tube Water Polo, Volleyball, Softball, 4 on 4 Flag Football and Sand Volleyball) than the 1975 version it should be a lot of fun and every bit as competitive. ATO undergrad leadership assures us that the “Trophy will return to 1101 Pennsylvania Ave. next spring”.