Forget basketball. The real action this weekend is on the Quidditch field!

The International Quidditch Association is hosting its seventh annual World Cup in South Carolina this Saturday and Sunday, April 5 and 6. Eighty teams, including five from Michigan with Grand Valley among them, will meet in North Myrtle Beach, S.C., for one of a very different and unique sporting events!

These teams competed over a year-long season to qualify for the World Cup through one of nine regional championships throughout the U.S., Europe, Australia, and Canada.

What is Quidditch?

According to the International Quidditch Association, Quidditch is a full-contact, co-ed sport inspired by the "Harry Potter" series. It began in 2005 and has since spread to more than 300 colleges, high schools, and community teams worldwide.

Quidditch is played with seven players to a side, all mounted on brooms. Three chasers score goals by putting the quaffle (similar to a volleyball) through any of three hoops at the opposite end of the field. A keeper defends the hoops, while two beaters throw bludgers (kickballs) at opposing players to temporarily knock them out of the game. Meanwhile, each team's seeker tries to catch the snitch, an autonomous fifteenth, yellow-clad athlete who has a custom-made velcro tail hanging from the back of their shorts, similar to flag football. A game of quidditch ends when the snitch is caught, and the capturing seeker's team is awarded an additional three goals."

The Michigan teams competing in the Quidditch World Cup include:

Central Michigan, Michigan State and U-M are ranked among the top 30 teams in the world.

For more information about the World Cup, including the schedule of events, visit

You can also stream the matches live at