Jump to content
debater34

**BEST DEBATE TEAM EVER**

Recommended Posts

Also off-topic, but just for fun... here are the people who were top speakers twice, at either the TOC, NDT or both the TOC and the NDT:

 

Lenny Gail (TOC, Maine East 1981 / NDT, Darmouth 1984)

Lyn Robbins (TOC, MBA 1983/ NDT, Baylor 1986 & 1987 (!) )

Paul Skiermont (NDT, U Kentucky 1994 & 1995)

Michael Gottlieb (NDT, Northwestern, 1998 & 1999)

 

 

So Gottlieb is the only person to both win the NDT twice, and to win the NDT Top speaker twice... so I guess that filter isn't bad if you want a "best debater ever"

 

right there however are James Q Wilson and Holt Spicer, who alternated on speaks: 2 & 1 in 1951, 1 &2 in 1952, winning both years...

 

That last bit may put Wilson & Spicer in a slight lead over Gottlieb & Sparacino for best college debate team, since both teams accounted for two NDT wins and two top speakers, but only Spicer & Wilson won second speaker as well twice in the same years (Sparacino was second speaker once at the NDT during the two years he debated with Gottlieb). Though of course the NDT isn't everything... ... also Sparacino was top speaker the year after Gottlieb graduated... so maybe there should be a round between those two teams to claim "best ever".

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

the problem there is that the first ranked team has only been listed since 1973 (naming it after Rex Copeland started in 1990), and recognition of the 2-5 rankings was only done since 2000... so the suggested analysis can't be performed

 

having said that...

 

Brad Ziff won the equivalent of the Copeland twice for Georgetown, once with Stewart Jay (1973), once with Tom Rollins (1975)

 

David Ottoson of Georgetown was first-ranked with John Walker in 1977

 

and then Rollins made a return to be first-ranked with Ottoson in (1978)

 

so that's why Georgetown was the dominant school of the 1970s, and Jim Unger was the coach of the 70s

 

then you skip the 80s, where there were no repeaters, and go to the 1990s,

when Ara Lovitt was a Copeland winner in 1992 with Kenny Agran, and again the next year with Steven Sklaver

 

and then you jump to

 

Dan Shalmon, Berkeley, who won the Copeland with both Luskey (2001) and Singh (2004), roughly alternating with

Tristan Morales, Northwestern, who won the Copeland with both Garen (2003) and with Josh Branson (2005)

 

there are no double Copeland winners as a team...

 

since 2000, these teams have repeated in the top 5:

Kamal Ghali & Stephen Bailey of Emory (2nd in 2000 & 5th in 2001);

Stacy Nathan & Dan Shalmon from Berkeley(4th in 2002 & 3rd in 2003; Stacy was also in the top 5 with Wickersham, 3rd, in 2005);

Greta Stahl & David Strauss from MSU (4th in 2003, 2nd in 2004)

 

So I think that means that only

 

Dan Shalmon has been in the top 5 all four years of his eligibility, in the seven years that one can track these things...

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Those teams are just recent ones that have not achieved hugh heights :S Yes, they're good teams, I respect them alot, but to say they are the best ever? Dan shalmon was extremely good. Kamal and gottleib are up there for sure too.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, not EVER, but that I've gone against has to be Chattahoochee RF, which was just two days ago.

 

It was our team's first time ever at states, so of course we knew we were going to be butchered by some great teams, but damn, was this team good.

 

It was the first round of the first day, and R read at an amazing pace, while I struggled to flow it, but it really got bad during F's speeches.

 

But, you know, I really enjoyed going against them, the F speaker was a really nice guy and ended up winning the #1 Aff speaker at the state tournament.

  • Downvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
the problem there is that the first ranked team has only been listed since 1973 (naming it after Rex Copeland started in 1990), and recognition of the 2-5 rankings was only done since 2000... so the suggested analysis can't be performed

 

having said that...

 

Brad Ziff won the equivalent of the Copeland twice for Georgetown, once with Stewart Jay (1973), once with Tom Rollins (1975)

 

David Ottoson of Georgetown was first-ranked with John Walker in 1977

 

and then Rollins made a return to be first-ranked with Ottoson in (1978)

 

so that's why Georgetown was the dominant school of the 1970s, and Jim Unger was the coach of the 70s

 

then you skip the 80s, where there were no repeaters, and go to the 1990s,

when Ara Lovitt was a Copeland winner in 1992 with Kenny Agran, and again the next year with Steven Sklaver

 

and then you jump to

 

Dan Shalmon, Berkeley, who won the Copeland with both Luskey (2001) and Singh (2004), roughly alternating with

Tristan Morales, Northwestern, who won the Copeland with both Garen (2003) and with Josh Branson (2005)

 

there are no double Copeland winners as a team...

 

since 2000, these teams have repeated in the top 5:

Kamal Ghali & Stephen Bailey of Emory (2nd in 2000 & 5th in 2001);

Stacy Nathan & Dan Shalmon from Berkeley(4th in 2002 & 3rd in 2003; Stacy was also in the top 5 with Wickersham, 3rd, in 2005);

Greta Stahl & David Strauss from MSU (4th in 2003, 2nd in 2004)

 

So I think that means that only

 

Dan Shalmon has been in the top 5 all four years of his eligibility, in the seven years that one can track these things...

 

Actually, Wake Forest's website catalogs all of the data on the top 16 First Round Rankings dating back to 1977. http://groups.wfu.edu/NDT/Results/NDT%20results%201997-2005%20(51-59).pdf

 

Although there are no double Copeland winners, Kamal Ghali and Stephen Bailey of Emory ranked 2nd twice (1998, 1999). As sophomores in 1998, they lost to Gottlieb and Sparacino (NU), and in 1999, they lost by one vote to Langwell and Ryan (Iowa). They were ranked in the top 5, three years in a row.

 

But I think Dan Shalmon is the only individual debater to be ranked in the top 5 for his four years of eligibility.

 

Bailey and Ghali are also, I think, the only team in NDT history to qualify for the finals three times. They lost in finals in 1999 and 2001. In 2000, they made it to the semifinals, and were advanced over by other Emory seniors.

Tristan Morales did of course advance to the semifinals or better three times (winning twice), but never with the same partner.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
At least in our circuit, Matt Thompson and Liam Culhane are perhaps the best team ever in South Dakota.

 

how many tournaments have they won?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tom Rollins of Georgetown was the only debater ever to win top speaker at NDT twice and be second another time. Alas, he never got the brass ring.

 

In Bill Southworth's article on Debate in the 1970's, one name stands out:

 

Best Judge: Jim Unger (89 points, 2nd was 45)

Best Coach: Jim Unger (98 points, 2nd was 71)

Best Debater: Tom Rollins (coached by Unger), 187 points (2nd was 153).

 

Two of Unger's teams were ranked in the top 10 for the decade, Ziff/Jay and Rollins/Walker. But curiously it was Dave Ottoson who finished in the top 4 at NDT three times (first with Walker, second with Chafer, and 3/4 with Rollins).

 

I'm not really sure why Georgetown had such a short run of glory. I attended Georgetown from 1974-77 (I wasn't fit to carry these guy's evidence boxes, I make no pretense of having been a top-quality debater). But Unger was about as unique a person as you could ever meet.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
one might also note that Gottlieb was top speaker both years he and Sparacino won the NDT. Sparacino was no scrub, either. He was runner up to his boy Mike in 99 for speaker recognition.

 

Mike graduated for Lawrence High School, and had a fair high school career. This just goes to show that your high school career means shit (e.g. Jason Regnier and Joe Ramsey)

 

As an alum of Lawrence High I just thought I'd add in the little I know of Gottlieb. I am well after his time, but Gottlieb and his high school partner Chris Francisco were among the best teams in Kansas during that time from all reports I have heard. At least 3 coaches in Kansas remember them in High School and say that they were the best debate team they had ever seen--including at least one who says that Gottlieb was the single best debater he ever saw.

 

They still hold many of Lawrence High's records, like wins in a season, best speaker average, win percentage etc. Francisco didn't debate in College because the university he attended didn't have a debate program at that point in time. I was also informed by someone that Gottlieb was voted debater of the decade by the college circuit, not sure on that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

best team:

U of Redlands:

1988: Marc Rubenstein (a freshmen that year) and David Herrick, double octas of the NDT

1989: Marc Rubenstein and David Herrick were in 10th place for the Copeland, Herrick was 8th speaker at the NDT, and made it to octas of the NDT

1990: Marc Rubenstein and Roger Cole were in 3rd place for the Copeland, Rubenstein was top speaker of the NDT and the lost the final round of the NDT on a 3-2

in 1991: Marc Rubenstein and Roger Cole won the Copeland, Rubenstein was 2nd speaker and Cole was 3rd speaker, they won the NDT on a 5-2 decision

Marc Rubinstein was labeled as the best debater in the 1990’s

Rubinstein and Cole were labeled the 2nd best debate team of the 1990’s

http://groups.wfu.edu/NDT/Articles/BestoftheDecade1990s.htm

I don’t know about you but to me that seems like an amazing college debate career

Breaking at the NDT every single year

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

David Strauss and Greta Stahl also broke at the NDT f0r four years. They are the only team in history to do it as a partnership.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
...

 

having said that...

 

Brad Ziff won the equivalent of the Copeland twice for Georgetown, once with Stewart Jay (1973), once with Tom Rollins (1975)

 

 

 

1. Somebody... anybody... PLEASE connect this particular post (in this exact context) to edebate... or create a website... or something. And then PLEASE email it to the Trojan Debate Squad. (And this comes from someone - perhaps the only someone - who really liked Bradley P. Ziff "as a person"!)

 

2. Given what happened and all (what little I remember of NDT) - could I cast a vote for "Harvard PL" or - in human terminology - Perwin & Lewis?

 

Hold on Elizabreth! I'm comin' to join ya, Honey! Gimme that Kool-aid, Reverend Jim!

Edited by topspeaker70

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sam LeCates and Dan Charles - Highland Park (TX)

 

EDIT: Sorry, I thought this was **WORST DEBATE TEAM EVER**

Edited by Llama Kuzco
  • Upvote 1
  • Downvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
best team:

U of Redlands:

1988: Marc Rubenstein (a freshmen that year) and David Herrick, double octas of the NDT

1989: Marc Rubenstein and David Herrick were in 10th place for the Copeland, Herrick was 8th speaker at the NDT, and made it to octas of the NDT

1990: Marc Rubenstein and Roger Cole were in 3rd place for the Copeland, Rubenstein was top speaker of the NDT and the lost the final round of the NDT on a 3-2

in 1991: Marc Rubenstein and Roger Cole won the Copeland, Rubenstein was 2nd speaker and Cole was 3rd speaker, they won the NDT on a 5-2 decision

Marc Rubinstein was labeled as the best debater in the 1990’s

Rubinstein and Cole were labeled the 2nd best debate team of the 1990’s

http://groups.wfu.edu/NDT/Articles/BestoftheDecade1990s.htm

I don’t know about you but to me that seems like an amazing college debate career

Breaking at the NDT every single year

 

I'd vote for Professor Spicer and Professor Wilson, not just on the basis of their 2 NDT Titles, the two 1st and second speaker awards and their enormous contributions to debate, public policy and educational leadership, but also because I was fortunate to watch a debate between the above mentioned Marc Rubenstein and Rodger Cole against Professors Holt Spicer and James Q. Wilson held at the University of Redlands in the late 90's.

 

Over 40 years after their second NDT Title, Professors Wilson and Spicer still "had it," even against one of the best ever Teams of the 90's.

 

It would be fun to see actual debates between many of the previously listed debate champions against one another, and I would encourage all of you to attend any such exhibitions if they ever do happen.

 

For example, I also was able to watch Josh Branson and Tristan Morales debate a European Championship Team at Northwestern University a couple years ago. Tristan and Josh were very, very talented and successful, and should certainly be mentioned in the best of the best category.

 

Dr. Glass is correct to report that determining the "Best" is, at best, a matter of pure random acts of comparing records, but there are many, many fine debaters from a number of Universities who can qualify for candidacy on the "Best" list.

 

In fact, two of the more recent "Best" are reported by Mr. Powers on e-debate as being in the news:

 

MR. POWERS' POST:

 

"One might say, "congratulations"....

 

Via Foreign Policy's The Cable ( http://thecable.foreignpolicy.com/ ):

 

DoD: Colin Kahl, a professor at Georgetown University and senior fellow at the Center for a New American Security, has been tapped to become the deputy assistant secretary of defense for the Middle East. In the position, he will help shape Defense Department policy on Iraq, Iran, and the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.

 

And you can read Nirav's opinion piece in today's LA Times, titled "Clinton's heading in the right direction -- Asia," here: http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-patel14-2009feb14,0,3702324.story

 

Also, just for the record, both Nirav and Colin thought that Topicality was a voting issue and that you had to have a plan. Just sayin'

 

sp"

 

 

AND, finally, another of the very, very best, Lawrence Summers of MIT, is now charged with helping to right the economy, as Chair of the Council of Economic Advisers.

 

The activity remains one of the best of all possible activities at producing the BEST in all of those who participate, and whether one compares records across the decades or is privileged to witness legends compete against one another, there probably is no "right answer" to the title of the Thread, but it sure is fun to read the posts and, in certain cases, remember the brillliance of those who are mentioned.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I'd vote for Professor Spicer and Professor Wilson, not just on the basis of their 2 NDT Titles, the two 1st and second speaker awards and their enormous contributions to debate, public policy and educational leadership, but also because I was fortunate to watch a debate between the above mentioned Marc Rubenstein and Rodger Cole against Professors Holt Spicer and James Q. Wilson held at the University of Redlands in the late 90's.

 

Over 40 years after their second NDT Title, Professors Wilson and Spicer still "had it," even against one of the best ever Teams of the 90's.

 

It would be fun to see actual debates between many of the previously listed debate champions against one another, and I would encourage all of you to attend any such exhibitions if they ever do happen.

 

For example, I also was able to watch Josh Branson and Tristan Morales debate a European Championship Team at Northwestern University a couple years ago. Tristan and Josh were very, very talented and successful, and should certainly be mentioned in the best of the best category.

 

Dr. Glass is correct to report that determining the "Best" is, at best, a matter of pure random acts of comparing records, but there are many, many fine debaters from a number of Universities who can qualify for candidacy on the "Best" list.

 

In fact, two of the more recent "Best" are reported by Mr. Powers on e-debate as being in the news:

 

MR. POWERS' POST:

 

"One might say, "congratulations"....

 

Via Foreign Policy's The Cable ( http://thecable.foreignpolicy.com/ ):

 

DoD: Colin Kahl, a professor at Georgetown University and senior fellow at the Center for a New American Security, has been tapped to become the deputy assistant secretary of defense for the Middle East. In the position, he will help shape Defense Department policy on Iraq, Iran, and the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.

 

And you can read Nirav's opinion piece in today's LA Times, titled "Clinton's heading in the right direction -- Asia," here: http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-patel14-2009feb14,0,3702324.story

 

Also, just for the record, both Nirav and Colin thought that Topicality was a voting issue and that you had to have a plan. Just sayin'

 

sp"

 

 

AND, finally, another of the very, very best, Lawrence Summers of MIT, is now charged with helping to right the economy, as Chair of the Council of Economic Advisers.

 

The activity remains one of the best of all possible activities at producing the BEST in all of those who participate, and whether one compares records across the decades or is privileged to witness legends compete against one another, there probably is no "right answer" to the title of the Thread, but it sure is fun to read the posts and, in certain cases, remember the brillliance of those who are mentioned.

I'm going to have to respectfully disagree with your decision there, old chap.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Caveat: I wouldn't ask this for myself, but one of my former debate partners (and my best friend) is in an ICU in a hospital in Europe. This is in the nature of a "sometimes-you-just-gotta-say-bucket" request.

 

1. If the current NDT ("Copeland") system were in effect today, where would 1968-69 Houston MS have been ranked going into the tournament?

 

2. What would have been the top ten teams going into the 1968-69 NDT?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i attended georgetown forensics institute in 1977. at the time, most of us had heard of brad ziff and tom rollins who were regarded as two of the best college debaters. as i recall, they often judged high school tournaments. it was often a privilege if you could get a glimpse of their flow sheets via your coach .

 

the two top coaches were james unger of georgetown and bill southworth of redlands.

 

marquette university of milwaukee, st. paul's of dallas, and beverly hills high school all had highly regarded programs.

 

spread debate was really just beginning at that time. however, the jesuit school from new orleans won the national debate championship in 1978 and from my limited perspective, they were phenomenal. they managed to meet all of the significant arguments but they gave short shrift to those that held no muster with evidence or "dead bodies".

 

somehow they managed to do it without, as my coach don vettel used to say, "foaming at the mouth" a subtle double entendre reference to rabies and the contagion that traps most debaters in the heart-racing- got to get to every point on the flow sheet mentality.

 

our topic was national health insurance that year oddly enough- even more strange that it was a school from new orleans which has been so ravaged by political strife and hampered by its ability to recover from Hurricane Katrina.- hardly a city known for its educational distinctiveness nor for its reputation in health care reform.

 

I also participated that year in the national high school debate championships. my partner ken perez, a brilliant debater who ended up going up to stanford, and i reached the round of 32 that year but we were buried by the boys from marquette: isaacson and dowling- they had actually been with us at the georgetown forensics institute the prior summer.

 

frankly, i was a weak debater compared to the other 3 but i did my best. i will never regret the experience.

 

mark brown

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...