[eDebate] JV/Novice Nats at WVU--Invite

NEIL BERCH berchnorto
Tue Nov 28 08:59:16 CST 2006

Invite is below.  Tournament entry is still free!!  Entries will be open on the Bruschke page in the next few minutes.  Please make hotel reservations promptly.  Early entry estimates are welcome.  If you have comments, complaints, questions, please email (I may very well have left out something important).  We look forward to hosting old and new friends.  Please let me know if there is anything I can do to help you get here.

--Neil Berch

West Virginia University

November 28, 2006



Dear Friends and Colleagues:


On behalf of the West Virginia University Debate team, I am pleased to invite you to the John A. Jacobsohn Memorial Novice and Junior Varsity Championship Debates, to be held in Morgantown, March 3-5, 2007.  The tournament, sponsored by WVU's Eberly College of Arts and Sciences, and the WVU Dean of Students, will be sanctioned by CEDA and SAMBA.  As indicated, the tournament will continue to honor the memory of our late colleague John Jacobsohn.  The Monday morning  awards ceremony will feature the presentation of the 7th annual Jacobsohn award to a member of the debate community who has also done significant public service.  We expect to be joined at the ceremony by Professor Jacobsohn's family.


Previous winners of the Jacobsohn Award:

2001:  Frank Harrison, Trinity University

2002:  Larry Watts, Mansfield University

2003:  Chris Baron, Baltimore Urban Debate League, and Sarah Snider, Marshall-Brennan Urban Debate League

2004:  Maxwell Schnurer, Marist College

2005:  Pete Bsumek, James Madison University

2006:  Will Baker, New York Coalition and IMPACT Coalition, M.L. Sandoz, Vanderbilt University, and Alfred "Tuna" Snider, University of Vermont


We will hold 7 preliminary rounds of debate in each division (junior varsity and novice-sorry, no open division), followed by the appropriate number of elimination rounds. Round 7 sides will be determined randomly by the tab room.  We will clear up to half of the teams in each division, with a limit of 32 teams in each division (and you must have at least a 4-3 record to clear).  WVU debaters will not debate in the tournament, and WVU will run the tab room.


The resolution will be this year's national policy debate resolution, and the time limits will be 9-3-6, with ten minutes of preparation time for each side. Rounds 1 and 2 will be preset.  Rounds 3 and 4 will be high-high and high-low within brackets, respectively; both will be powered off of round 2.  Rounds 5, 6, and 7 will be power matched based on the results of all previous rounds; round 5 will be high-high; rounds 6 and 7 will be high-low within brackets.  We will observe the CEDA by-laws.  The WVU debate team supports CEDA's sexual harassment policy, and we will enforce it.  


Eligibility for junior varsity and novice divisions will be as determined by the CEDA by-laws.  Exceptions for JV National Championships will be applied (in other words, making it to three final rounds or qualifying for the NDT does not affect your eligibility for this tournament).  If you have questions regarding the eligibility of your debaters, please ask them well in advance of the tournament.  Hybrid teams are eligible to participate, and they will be eligible to qualify for elimination rounds.


Awards will be given to all teams clearing in both divisions, and to the top 20 speakers in each division.  Ties between teams will be broken on the basis of:

1. adjusted points

2. total points

3. opponent wins

4. random 

Speaker awards will be based upon adjusted points.  Ties will be broken by:

1. total points

2. double-adjusted points

3. judge variance


Special awards will be presented to:

1) the novice speaker with the highest speaker points among those who began debating in 2006;

2) the judge from among the 10 most preferred judges whose written ballots are deemed by the tab room staff to be the most educational (the Neil Butt Award).  

3) a member of the debate community who has served in the military and has employed the power of words to resolve conflicts peacefully (the second annual Peter Borsay Memorial Award).


Judges:  Each school is responsible for providing a qualified judge for each one or two teams entered in the tournament.  A judge will be responsible for covering four preliminary rounds for each team entered (seven for two teams).  In the spirit of the FREE championship tournament (and to improve everyone's preferences, including your own), we urge anyone who can do so to volunteer extra judging.  Schools could even support the free tournament by paying their judges to judge extra rounds (using some of what you save by not being charged entry fees).  Please note that we had originally intended to charge an entry fee and then let schools buy their way out of the fee by providing extra judging.  However, I believe that we can solve problems through community just as easily as through the market.  More to the point, I hate handling money.  Also, if you are in need of hired judging, I urge you to hire your judging through the tournament (we will use some of the donated judging for that purpose).  The cost for hired judging will be $125 per uncovered team.  All of these measures together will enable us to close most of the remaining deficit for the tournament.


All judges are required to judge through the octafinal round or one round after your last team is eliminated, whichever occurs later (though we will of course do our best to get eliminated schools on the road as early as possible).  We will use a mutually preferred judging system (6 categories).  All preferences recorded by 2:00 pm on Friday will go into effect for round 1.


Entries:  Please send your entries by 4:00 PM on Wednesday, February 28, 2007.  Entries should be made through the ultra-fantastic Bruschke Web Page (www.debateresults.com<http://www.debateresults.com/>). TOURNAMENT ENTRY IS FREE FOR ALL TEAMS (though we reserve the right to charge a nuisance fee of $50 for voluminous late drops), but we will still provide a variety of amenities, including light breakfast and lunch on both Saturday and Sunday, some still-to-be-determined food on Monday, a hospitality room with healthy and less-healthy snacks, and awards (most likely, the traditional pottery, but we're also looking at Appalachian glass).  We currently have room for 150 teams; since there were 116 teams last year (a recent record), we do not anticipate a need to limit entries.  The novice division will be held in a cluster of two or three adjoining buildings, and the junior varsity division will be held in another cluster of two or three adjoining buildings (the two clusters are about a two minute walk from one another).


We would be especially appreciative of early entry estimates.  Changes on the day before the tournament should be made via email (berchnorto at msn.com<mailto:berchnorto at msn.com>) or cell phone (412-445-3957).  


The tournament hotel will be the Radisson Hotel of Morgantown, 2 Waterfront Place, Morgantown, WV  26501.  Their direct phone number is 304-296-1700, and our contact is Kay Fanok.  The easiest way to make reservations, however, is on the Web.  Simply go to the following site and follow the directions:



We have a substantial block of rooms, including 75 double-doubles, 30 rooms with a King and a sofa bed, and 20 Kings.  The cost for the block is $85 per night plus tax for up to four people in a room.  There is also a nominal parking charge of $4.00 per day.  The block closes on February 2, 2007.  


We urge you to stay at the Radisson (and we urge you to make reservations quickly to get the best room selection).  Friday night registration will be there.  Pairings will be distributed there on Saturday and Sunday mornings (as well as on campus), and all of Monday's rounds will be held in the hotel.  We have virtually the entire hotel reserved, but if the block fills, we will suggest an alternate hotel.


Tentative Schedule (and please note that we will vigorously enforce the 15 minute forfeit rule; please also note that free parking is available in the Mountainlair Garage Area 3 on Saturday and Sunday; that's just across the street from the tournament buildings; you may also fight one another for marked parking behind Woodburn Hall, as long as you don't park in spots marked reserved or handicapped).


Friday, March 2:

6:00-10:00:  Registration at the Radisson.  If you have not yet arrived, you will need to call 412-445-3957 by the close of registration to confirm your entry.


Saturday, March 3:

7:00  Pairings for rounds 1 and 2 released at the Radisson.

7:30  Pairings for rounds 1 and 2 released and light breakfast available at Woodburn Hall.

8:30  Round 1

11:00 Round 2

1:00 Lunch

2:30  Round 3

5:00  Round 4

Evidence may be stored in any competition room


Sunday, March 4:

7:00  Pairings for round 5 released at the Radisson.

7:30  Pairings for round 5 released and light breakfast available at Woodburn Hall.

8:30  Round 5

11:45 Round 6

1:45  Lunch

3:15  Round 7


6:30  Double Octafinals

All evidence should be removed from campus, as thorough cleaning will take place on Sunday night. 


Monday, March 5:

7:00 Pairings released at the Radisson.

8:30 Octafinals at the Radisson (as are all succeeding rounds).  

11:00 Awards

12:30 Quarterfinals

3:45  Semifinals

6:45  Finals 


Morgantown is easily accessible by Interstate 68 from the East, and by Interstate 79 from the North and South detailed directions will be posted later).  The hills of West Virginia are beautiful any time of the year, but they are especially pretty in March (really!).  We hope to see many of you, and we look forward to returning the hospitality that many of you have shown us these past several years.







Neil Berch

Associate Professor of Political Science

and Debate Coach

on behalf of the WVU Debate Team

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