Quidditch Club launches at Tech

A new sport based on a popular book series is being established at colleges across the nation, including at Tech.

The Tech Quidditch Club is a new organization based on the popular sport in the Harry Potter series.

“It’s definitely a contact sport,” Kellie Davis, sophomore and co-president of the Quidditch Club, said. “We will be playing a modified version known as Muggle Quidditch.”

In the Harry Potter series, a muggle is a non-magical person.

“In the books the players fly above the quidditch pitch on brooms,” Davis said. “In Muggle Quidditch, the players run while holding a broom between their legs to simulate flying.”

There are four balls used in gameplay: a quaffle, two bludgers and a snitch.

“Three players from each team, known as Chasers, score by throwing the quaffle through three hoops at each end of the pitch,” Davis said. “While doing this, two other players from each team, called Beaters, try to hit the Chasers with other balls called bludgers. We use a volleyball for the quaffle and dodgeballs for the bludgers. Each team also has a Keeper who defends his team’s hoops from the opposing Chasers.”

The snitch is more complicated, according to Davis. In the book series, the snitch is sought after by one member of the team called the Seeker. The snitch is a small golden ball with wings.

“We have a human snitch,” Davis said. “The snitch has a tennis ball inside a sock tucked into the waistband of his shorts or pants. The snitch is free to avoid capture by any means necessary.”

The game is over when one team’s Seeker captures the snitch. According to the International Quidditch Association rulebook, the snitch can avoid capture by doing anything from riding a bicycle, climbing a tree or even by hiding in the audience.

Many colleges have teams that compete in the Quidditch World Cup. This year, it is being held Nov. 12 and 13 in New York City. Roughly 100 teams from across the world are entered in this year’s World Cup. Louisiana State University’s team is ranked in the top 10, along with Boston University, Texas A and M, and Arizona State University. Other colleges competing in this year’s World Cup include Harvard University, Virginia Tech, RIT and Yale University. UT Knoxville and Vanderbilt University also have teams but are not competing this year.

A total of 387 college and high school teams are registered in the United States. There are 34 schools in Canada that have teams. Australia has 13, the United Kingdom has 10, and Mexico, Russia, China, Portugal, France and Germany, among others, all have schools with quidditch teams.

“It would be great to put our own team together and enter the tournament someday,” Davis said. “Tech would benefit from the connections with other universities around the globe. And quidditch is a fun way to promote both literature and physical activity.”

Anyone interested in the Quidditch Club can receive updates and other information on Facebook