Austin, TX – (Feb 9, 2022) The University of Texas at Austin hosted their annual debate tournament on the weekend of February 5-7. The tournament provided an opportunity for three hundred competitors from twenty-four states the opportunity to compete in three divisions of debate, Novice, Junior Varsity and Varsity.


The tournament featured six preliminary rounds of competition, where students argued on both sides, on the topic “Resolved: The United States Federal Government should substantially increase prohibitions on anticompetitive business practices by the private sector by at least expanding the scope of its core antitrust laws”. Followed by a single elimination tournament where the top thirty-two Open, top seven Junior Varsity, and top twelve Novice teams advanced based on the results from the preliminary rounds.


The Novice division showcased competitors with little to no experience in debate and held a partial Octafinal round featuring teams from Boston College, Cornell University, George Mason University, Indiana University, James Madison University, Liberty University, New York University, Texas Tech University, the New School, and the University of Houston. The Final Round saw sixth seeded Ian McNabb & Caleb Wachsmuth from Boston College defeat the fourth seeded swing team of Wajih Rehman from Houston & Lolo Kaase from the New School on a 2-1 decision. Jenna Right from James Madison was recognized as the Top Speaker of the Division.


The Junior Varsity division showcased competitors with limited experience in debate and cleared to a Quarterfinal round featuring teams from George Mason University, James Madison University, Liberty University, the United States Naval Academy, the University of Houston, and the University of Texas at Austin. The Final Round saw second seeded Dannise Brown & Matthew Conway from James Madsion defeat top seeded Melanie Dellinger & Alaina Megill from Liberty on a 2-1 decision. In addition to being a Finalist, Melanie Dellinger from Liberty was recognized as the Top Speaker of the Division.


The Open division is the highest level of competition in CEDA debate and cleared to a Double Octafinals featuring teams from Dartmouth College, Emory University, George Mason University, Georgetown University, Grinnell Community College, Harvard University, Liberty University, Michigan State University, Missouri State University, Northwestern University, Samford University, the University of California Berkeley, the University of Iowa, the University of Kansas, the University of Kentucky, the University of Michigan, the University of Southern California, the University of Texas Austin, Trinity University, Wake Forest University and Wayne State University. The Final Round saw sixth seeded Julian Kuffour & Kevin Sun from USC defeat top seeded Rafael Pierry & Giorgio Rabbini from Michigan on a 2-1 decision. Kat Cazeau from Liberty was recognized as the Top Speaker of the Division.


The tournament marked the sixth weekend of the Spring competitive season and provided a total of thirty-five thousand minutes of speaking time for undergraduate students. Students engaged in a minimum of three debates in favor of the resolution and three opposed, requiring them to test their hours of research and preparation on both sides of the topic. The format enables students to build skills in critical thinking, communication, collaboration, and creativity.


About CEDA

Cross Examination Debate Association was founded in 1971. CEDA is currently responsible for formulating the annual intercollegiate policy debate topic used in tournament competition throughout the nation. Throughout the season, CEDA calculates National Sweepstakes Standings, the national and regional rankings of member institutions based on compiled tournament results.