As we look back on the last year of our lives, we think about all that has happened or—most likely—not happened. 2020 was a roller coaster of emotions and canceled plans. The more we get into the year 2021, the more easily we can start to see the light at the end of the tunnel. We’re looking forward to the warm summer weather and the fall autumn leaves! The NIRSA Championship Series is awaiting our regional and national tournaments return; however, before our tournaments can start to take shape, we need to find amazing leaders to take the reins and lead us to success.

Domonique Dunn, Coordinator of Competitive Sports at The Ohio State University, summed it up perfectly as he talked about being the Director of Competition for the National Flag Football Tournament: “As a Director, it was rewarding to see all of the preparation and hard work from an amazing team result in a great first tournament in Round Rock. Of course, we would’ve loved to pick up where we left off last year, but I’m excited to regain that momentum with the upcoming tournament.”

With the cancelation of all our sports and with the national basketball championships being canceled twice, our leadership team was put into a challenging position as we moved to plan for the 2022 tournaments. Brooke Cochran, Assistant Director of Sport Programs at the University of Florida, made the difficult decision to step down and not return for the 2022 tournament. Brooke was our All-Tournament Assistant Director at the 2019 National Basketball Tournament and was leading the charge as director for the 2020 tournament before it was canceled. She was hoping for a return but she realized that she’d “had the honor to be on the committee and its leadership for over five years now and the national tournament is something that has greatly contributed to [her] growth and development.” Brooke felt that “with growth and development as well as ‘opportunity’ in mind, [she] wanted to be able to give the opportunity for growth and advancement to another worthy colleague in the field.”

The Series is full of excitement as we think about playing sports again—it’s been a long year for us all. We’re looking for professionals who want an opportunity to shine at the national basketball or national flag football championships. The flag football championships will be held once again in Round Rock, Texas from January 7-9, 2022. Our basketball championships will be headed back to Wichita, Kansas from April 8-10, 2022.

The following leadership positions are available:


  • Assistant Director of All-Tournament
  • Assistant Director of Media
  • Assistant Director of Officials
  • Assistant Director of Unified

Flag football

  • Director of All-American
  • Assistant Director of All-American
  • Assistant Director of Media
  • Assistant Director of Officials
  • Director of Unified

We are opening these leadership applications earlier than ever this year as it will allow us more time for an on-boarding process with our new directors and assistant directors. This change will become the new norm as making the transition into a leadership role is important and time consuming. Brooke Cochran may be stepping down but she is looking “forward to helping in the on-boarding process for the new director and assistant director and [she is] excited to develop a helpful and educational on-boarding process for the tournament and its leadership!”

No one can predict the future or what the next year will look like, but for anyone remotely interested in a leadership role at national flag football or national basketball, here’s Co-Director of Officials Leanna Surmin, Assistant Director of Intramural Sports and Facility Scheduling at DePaul University, talking about how rewarding the volunteer experience is: “I honestly don’t think I would be the professional I am today without the experiences that I have had at the national flag football tournament. The tournament has been a leadership laboratory for me, and it has been where I have crafted (and will continue to craft) who I am as woman, teacher, and student of sports and officiating.”

Every Series volunteer brings value to every tournament we have, consider applying today! Applications will remain open until mid-April!


  • For questions or more information, please contact NIRSA National Sport Programs Coordinator Nicole Jackson.
National Sport Programs Coordinator at

Nicole Jackson is currently the National Sport Programs Coordinator at NIRSA.