University of Central Florida senior Brandon Baroody never expected something so simple to turn into something so special.
He was on UCF’s Memory Mall in 2007 when someone asked him to play a pickup game of football. Five years later, the National Flag Football Championships Hall of Fame has honored Baroody for an illustrious flag football career.
Baroody was enshrined into the hall during a December ceremony in Pensacola. His co-recreational team was in the Panhandle during the New Year’s holiday to defend its 2011 national championship, but finished as runner-up.
He joins Drew Hill (2011) as the only two Knights to be inducted into the hall for their accomplishments while playing intramural sports at UCF. Nick Brigati, a former UCF Intramural Sports graduate assistant, is also in the hall for his officiating career while seeking his undergraduate degree at Ohio University.
Baroody is a four-time defensive All-American (2007, 2009, 2010 and 2011), making him only the fourth player to be named All-American four times in the history of the tournament. His on-field individual accomplishments include:
- 2009 defensive MVP.
- First player to receive All-American honors in two separate divisions (2011 co-recreational offensive All-American and 2011 men’s defensive All-American).
- 2011 co-recreational offensive MVP.
- Playing for 2009 and 2011 national championship teams (2009 men’s and 2011 co-recreational).
- 2011 national finalist (men’s).
Baroody credits his teammates for his individual success. “If you’re team isn’t good, you don’t get recognized,” he said.
He also credits the competitive nature of the Recreation and Wellness Center’s Intramural Sports program. “UCF is a great place for competition,” he said. “You get a feel for what it’s like playing in a tournament. To be good here you have to be good and organized. Once you get a taste of victory you want to keep going for more.”
Baroody, a Miami native, is scheduled to graduate in May with a double major in marketing and finance, and a minor in accounting. He said success on the field can translate to the real world. “Flag football is a thinking man’s game. Seeing things as they develop and adapting to it,” he said. “Adapting during the game is what leads you to success.”
Baroody’s co-recreational team also played in the NIRSA National Campus Championship Series title Jan. 4-6 on the UCF campus, and the team finished second. Baroody is a five-time NCCS champion, including three straight titles in the co-recreational division:
- 2008 and 2011 men’s national championship team.
- 2009, 2010, 2011 co-recreational national championship teams.
UCF Intramural Sports and the RWC are funded by the Student Government Association. UCF flag football teams have won 10 national titles in the past 40 years