Griffith University sports teams are preparing to take on many rivals at the Northern University Games next week, but their greatest opposition may come from within.

More than 1,500 university students from 12 universities will descend on Brisbane from July 7 — 11, to compete in the 2013 Northern University Games (NUG).

The ‘Northerns’ as our budding sports professionals call them, will see students from Queensland, northern New South Wales and even the South Pacific region compete in sixteen different sports, across 16 venues over four days.

This year Griffith’s Brisbane & Logan campuses are playing for home ground advantage and have built up their biggest team ever for the Northern Uni Games, with 250 members registered to compete.

Natalee Black, from Griffith Sports and Activities, said it had a lot to do with the location of the event, as it is being hosted in Brisbane, plus some much improved organisation.

Griffith Brisbane & Logan sports team

L to R: Joel Crawford, Mark Hammond, Emma Moore and Courtney Rawson with the new team mascot.

“I would put some of it down to the location this year, but even more so our newly established unigames committee,” said Natalee.

“It’s a volunteer leadership committee of 10 students, who applied for roles. They are involved in every aspect of the event and have been working with me since October last year to make this happen.”

“I couldn’t have recruited this many players without them. I just hope they all have a really good time and come back for more unigames every year. If we get a few wins that’s always a bonus.”

They could end up in a showdown with their ‘great south-eastern’ rivals from the Griffith Gold Coast team, which has amassed a further 240 students in their desire to win the title of overall northern games champions for the second year in a row.

> Get the lowdown from the Brisbane and Logan team

Michelle O’Brien, is the Sports & Recreation Officer for the Griffith University Gold Coast Student Guild, said that their clubs are really developing strongly this year.

L to R: Jessica Stapleton,    Tahnee Dowsett, Cameron Harrison and Mitchell Muscat.

L to R: Jessica Stapleton, Tahnee Dowsett, Cameron Harrison and Mitchell Muscat.

“The Gold Coast student clubs are doing a great job in recruitment this year, which is mostly through word-of-mouth and our campus events,” said Michelle.

“But we have the added incentive of being the overall winners of the Northerns in 2012 where we brought home the Jodie Martin Memorial Shield.”

“So we would really love to make it two in a row.”

> Get the lowdown from the Gold Coast team

As you would expect there is plenty of fun and games happening off the field too, with themed social events every night in Brisbane, including Mexicana, Zombies and this year’s much anticipated ‘Winter Onezieland’.

The northern games are a prelude to the Australian University Games where the Griffith teams will unite to compete against the best from across Australia on the Gold Coast from 29 September to 4 October, 2013.