Sports, both varsity and IM, are a big part of life on campus. While Xavier is a relatively small school enrollment-wise, the Musketeers have a big time athletic program. There are 14 NCAA Division I teams, so a large portion of the student body are athletes in some respect. The men’s basketball team is the crown jewel of Xavier athletics. Selling out every home game in the 10,250-seat Cintas Center, students and alumni make home games the highlights of the week during the frigid winter months. The annual Cross-town Shootout against the University of Cincinnati is the hottest ticket in town, and it is also one of the biggest rivalries in college basketball. The sad fact is that other sports, such as the rifle team, are among the best in the nation, but little attention is paid to anything else but hoops. Als,o note that the school has been without a varsity football team since 1973. Aside from varsity sports, the intramural and club programs at X are popular and well organized. Flag football, softball, basketball, and volleyball are some of the more popular IM sports. Club sports such as rugby, lacrosse, and soccer are also popular for those looking for more intense competition.
The fact that Xavier does not have a football team hurts the athletic atmosphere on campus during the fall. However, during basketball season, there is no better place to be in the NCAA than at Xavier, with nationally-recognized men’s and women’s programs. Even the teams that do not get due exposure are competitive within their respective sports. Intramurals are widely popular and well organized, making Xavier a great place to catch a game or participate in one yourself.