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Lions welcome fresh face to intramurals

By Nick Bailey
On February 20, 2012

The popularity of intramural sports at Texas A&M University-Commerce has increased this semester as students welcome the new Assistant Director of Intramural Sports Kari Osborne to the A&M-Commerce family.

Osborne comes from a small town in the Appalachian Mountain area, and is used to the small-town setting that Commerce offers.

"I grew up in Virginia," Osborne said. "I grew up there and lived there until I was 23 and went to a college about 45 minutes from my parents' house."

During her years as a college student, Osborne was active in intramural sports at the University of Virginia College at Wise, where she began to cultivate an interest in intramurals as a career.

"When I was an undergrad, I started playing intramurals and then I got a job with intramurals," she said. "I got to my last semester of my undergrad [degree] and I had went through all the teacher education classes and was going to be a high school teacher and coach volleyball, and thought, ‘I don't know if that's really what I want to do.' My boss at the time asked if I had ever thought about going to grad school for sport management and getting a GA and learning about intramurals more from an administrative standpoint, so I applied to Western Illinois."

Osborne made her way to A&M-Commerce on the good recommendation from her friend and former Assistant Director of Intramural Sports Mike Chadee. Since her arrival at A&M-Commerce from Washington University in St. Louis, Osborne feels that she has had a positive experience.

"Everyone's very nice," she said "The campus community has been really welcoming. People here are really passionate about intramurals. We've got a lot of interest in who's playing and what games are going on, and really for me it's a big change from the university I was at before."

When comparing the level of student involvement, Osborne said A&M-Commerce intramural sports seem to be more important to the campus community, noting that its not just the players that take notice of the sports.

"I think students here really enjoy following the teams in intramurals, and that's something I hadn't really experienced," she explained. "There are people wanting to know the records, people wanting to know who the best team is. And it's not just people playing on other teams, it's people that are just fans and they're involved in this exciting environment of who's going to be the champion of intramural basketball, and it's really interesting to see that."

Outside of the Morris Recreation Center, Osborne prefers to spend her time relaxing and keeping to herself.

"In my free time, I like to relax," Osborne said. "I spend most of my weekends just hanging out at my apartment, watching TV and movies, and getting caught up on laundry and cleaning since I spend a lot of time at work during the week. Dallas has some great shopping, so I like to venture there on the weekends."

While Osborne may enjoy the fast-paced intramural basketball at A&M-Commerce, she admits that baseball is her favorite sport, and she's been involved with the sport in one way or another for much of her life.

"I am a huge baseball fan which [anyone] will notice from the decor in my office," she said. "I worked for two Minor League teams previously, and my cousins have owned and operated a New York Mets Minor League baseball franchise where I grew up since the early 1980s. Plus, my uncle was a pitcher in the majors, so baseball is definitely my favorite sport and has always been a huge interest in my life. I still love going home in the summer and going to the games with my Dad to meet up with our family to watch a game."

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