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Everything posted by STADB9

  1. For the record: I'm the co-coordinator of hired judging for nats. If you want to get hooked up, send an email to me at sduboisATstasaintsDOTnet with days/times available (June 16-20), events willing to judge, and preferred contact info. If you need travel/lodging covered or if you're not somebody whose background I'm familiar with, I'll want to know that as well. Must be 18 months out of HS at minimum. At present I have far more people wanting to judge than seeking to hire judges, but as district tournaments are completed that might change. First people into the queue get placed first.
  2. In fairness, it's not as though the proposals here are being offered as changes to the KSHSAA manual. This thread concerns a single tournament administered by a small subsection of the Kansas coaching community, and with a different prevailing standard that that which tends to hold hegemony elsewhere. I don't think anyone involved in this district has any illusion that oral critiques will make everybody happy. But then again, not everybody's happy now. The question we're facing, in my view, is whether a majority of coaches can be cobbled together to support a limited good-faith experiment, and under what conditions. What modifications would people like to see in the standards suggested above? And would you be supportive of administrative action to enforce the level of decorum required by these standards, or is that just going to create tantrums? If so, we'd be better off not going down this road at all.
  3. I speak only for myself as a coach and not for the organization in question. My own students and others have persuaded me that oral critiques in this context can be on-balance beneficial. I think, however, that this is going to be a very, very hard sell to the body of coaches as a whole given the mechanics of the tournament, and that at least in the early stages, any form of permissable critiques would be less extensive than the advocates would want, and certainly less extensive than the prevailing standard on the national circuit or in college. To that end, and for the purposes of further discussion, please review the following possible standards and let me know what you think ought to be different. 1. Oral critiques exist for the educational benefit of the competing students and for no other purpose. Critiques which do not adhere to this standard are out of place at this tournament; if critiques as a whole are deemed to fail to meet this standard the practice will be discontinued. 2. No judge is obliged to give an oral critique, or to remain present in the room for the oral critiques of other judges. 3. No competitor is obliged to listen to any oral critique or to any portion of an oral critique. The decision of a debater or debaters not to listen to an oral critique is not considered acceptable grounds to punish a team competitively. 4. Critiques must accompany a ballot containing a written RFD, rather than be used as a substitute for a written RFD. 5. Critiques may not be conducted by any judge who has not yet turned in a written ballot. All ballots are final at the time the judge submits them except in the event that the tournament director requires clarification regarding the judge’s intent. 6. Critiques may not be conducted in front of any judge who has not yet completed his/her ballot. 7. Critiques are considered to be a post-round event rather than a part of the round itself; they may therefore be recorded for subsequent review by teams, coaches, tournament officials, and school administrators. 8. The conduct of all critique participants must adhere to the rules of conduct of the KSHSAA and the NCFL. Behavior contrary to these rules is subject to sanction by the tournament director and/or administering organizations. 9. Students and/or coaches may question the judge administering the critique for clarification, but may not use the questioning practice to challenge the judge’s decision. Confrontation of the judge under these conditions may be subject to administrative sanction pursuant to Section 8 of the KSHSAA bylaws. Judges may choose to cut short their critique for this or any other reason, with no penalty applied to a judge who does so; again, the critiques are a courtesy for the participating teams, not a requirement. 10. No individual critique may take longer than ten minutes exclusive of q/a. All critiques must be concluded within 150 minutes of the scheduled start time of the round.
  4. I'm considering this question. I would be primarily interested in hearing from active high school competitors as to whether they consider oral critiques valuable.
  5. As KSHSAA policies related to debate travel are a popular topic on this board, I felt it might be useful for you to be aware of a potential change in the way KSHSAA may be operated in the future. Legislation has been proposed in the Kansas house that would add a number of parental representatives to the KSHSAA structure. The best source I can find that describes the bill in detail is here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OkAI0P-h7d8&feature=youtu.be Bear in mind that this is a video produced by PROPONENTS of the legislation; when viewing the video, use your critical thinking skills to separate the factual information contained therein from the arguments in favor of the changes. You may wish to give consideration to the potential which this legislation offers in terms of changing KSHSAA's policies regarding out-of-state travel for debate and other activities. Discussion and debate on the issue would be welcome, with the understanding that individuals within our community will make their own decisions regarding support or opposition.
  6. To be completely honest, I don't know that I'd "feel" anything. Nor do I know that any other coaches would. Your best chance of achieving persuasion lies in direct discussion with individual coaches with whom you already have a positive relationship, your own coach in particular. Proposals for reform of DCI that come from outside of the coaching community are likely to run afoul of defensive sentiment. This isn't to say that the coaches don't care what the students think; I don't think I'm saying too much when I indicate that the feelings of the students regarding the size of the tournament were discussed at this year's meeting, and in a respectful manner. Nonetheless, it's important to understand that the coaches value their collective control of the event and its unique nature, and it's best not to create the impression that there's some sort of outside pressure being brought to bear. My advice would be to work incrementally and informally. Individual students should make their feelings known to their own coaches first. Those students and programs who are on the margins of the tournament--who would be excluded if the event were to shrink--have a particular credibility on this issue, and I suspect that their opinions will have exceptional purchase with many of us.
  7. Blue Valley didn't win their first until 1992; they won 11 titles between 2000 and 2011. At least ten were under Riffer. We have no way of knowing for certain based on the available data, but it seems pretty likely that either he or Mark Stucky has won more state championships than any other coach in the history of the state.
  8. The overwhelming barrier to all of the reform proposals you identify is that the majority of coaches either do not feel that the tournament is too big or are afraid of offending marginal qualifiers and their coaches by taking the position that the tournament is too big. I have no objection to these proposals being discussed in public. But if you're genuinely interested in making them happen, these discussions are best directed towards your own schools' coaches. Until the majority of coaches feel that a smaller DCI is desirable, and are willing to take that stance at the meeting, nothing is going to change.
  9. Moundridge with 25. http://www.kshsaa.org/Public/Debate/PDF/CompleteHistory.pdf
  10. Terrible to hear this happened. Glad everyone is OK.
  11. This thread has gotten badly hijacked. Can't we all go back to discussing how horrible Pi is?
  12. I will confess to having compiled lists of this sort for my own amusement, both as a competitor and as a coach. I haven't made them public for fear of hurting feelings. If a public top 25 list is worth having, why not just produce one? There's no reason the coaches would need to sanction or participate in such a project; we really don't have any more access to the relevant data than any given member of the community. There will be haters, of course, but that's going to be true of any such project.
  13. I think all rankings should be based on number of NFL members and degrees accumulated. That aside, when hyping my team to outsiders, I generally refer to our ordinal position on the bidtracker as our "state ranking".
  14. Proposals to shrink the field were considered by the coaches. None of them mustered a majority. The consensus view seems to favor an inclusive tournament--and when a team that made it in on two octos bids takes second at the tournament, there's probably something to be said for staying big. We did pass a reform to eliminate the 48-team minimum, making all tournaments 16-bid events provided that all recipients are .500 or better. I don't have my notes with me but will post the wording at some point.
  15. Have no idea what this refers to, but if you have concerns about the event you should backchannel the members of the committee. Nothin' wrong with trying to make DCI better.
  16. I don't know if the software enables it or not but it wouldn't be a massive adjustment to do it manually. I think the district chair may have permitted strikes this year--I don't know for certain because STA didn't use any. I would point out that pre-tournament strikes are almost always used against experienced judges whom the school in question doesn't care for--this is not a regulation that is likely to produce a more experienced pool or a pool that more closely replicates the judges at NFL nationals. Rules are discussed at the fall meeting and via email throughout the year. Only head coaches have input. This thread represents an opportunity to persuade TTNFL head coaches to propose specific reforms. I offer no guarantees that anyone will be persuaded, as well as the caveat that change of this sort tends to occur very slowly, but I suspect that I'm not the only one listening.
  17. Would it surprise you to know that BVW BY were eliminated in a round in which they lost the ballots of two four year debaters and national qualifiers and picked up a parent? The exact sort of panel that the BVW participants in this thread are calling for more of? We have the rounds for a reason, and the inclusion or exclusion of any one qualifying team proves nothing about the legitimacy of a given tournament. Even good teams take legitimate losses. This discussion ought to have nothing to do with the specific results of one particular district tournament--and to their credit, the individuals who initiated this discussion are not making it about that. The question ought to be about whether the processes of judge selection are producing a pool of judges that resemble those that these teams will be debating in front of at the national tournament. I am interested in further discussion along those lines. I have ZERO interest in claims that "result x invalidates the tournament/qualifiers' accomplishments".
  18. The last post before yours was mine, and I certainly wasn't joking. I don't think any of the individuals involved in this thread were "screwed over"; I think we qualified three outstanding teams out of TTNFL, and that the national results will justify that conclusion, as they almost always do; and I still think it's reasonable to review the processes by which national qualifiers are selected, with an eye to replicating the NFL Nationals pool as closely as we possibly can.
  19. The NFL rules have changed several times since I last reviewed them with an eye towards what I could get away with. My best guesses as to the answers to your questions: 1. This is NOT a national rule with regard to district competition, although I think it's still a rule enforced at the NFL national tournament. The coaches in Three Trails NFL (and in all other Kansas districts of which I am aware) have imposed this rule for the reasons Ms. Gress outlines earlier in the thread. The constituency for changing this rule within that community is less than substantial. 2. This is the one I'm least certain about. As of a few years ago, I think the rule was that you had to either panel ALL of your rounds or NONE of them. Another poster indicates above that the regulation may be that all rounds from quarters on must be paneled. To the best of my knowledge all Kansas districts panel and it's not something we've ever really thought about. Maybe we should. 3. National rule.
  20. This is not a fair criticism of Jared's post. CFL and NFL are very, very different animals with two distinct sets of problems. It is a lot easier for local coaches to implement reforms in the district practices at CFL.
  21. I'm going to add this as well. We need to institute a permanent moratorium on the following: 1. School A brings debaters' parents as their school judges. 2. Debaters from school A are eliminated from the qualifier, and they and their coaches immediately blame the loss on having been judged by other schools' parent judges. Every year, every qualifying tournament, it's the same story. And it's very much a world's-smallest-violin situation. Bring the sort of judges you'd want to be judged by. If you don't do so, don't complain about the judging pool, ever.
  22. We are required by the NFL to use Joy of Tournaments to run the event. That means the following things right out of the gate. 1. MPJ is out the window; the program makes no allowance for it. 2. There is an immediate and irrevocable strike on "school judges" judging teams from the school that recruited them. The last time Aquinas hosted the entire community pool was blocked from judging the host school for this reason, though I gather we found a way around that in subsequent years. Assuming a means of getting around the MPJ issues, such as manual removal and reinsertion of judges in every single round, you would still find yourself (in Three Trails) in a situation where you'd have somewhere in the neighborhood of 20 judges with significant contemporary judging experience in the entire pool. This is what happens when every district in Kansas runs their qualifier at once. Moreover, schools which feel themselves to be less than elite in that style of debate will send those judges directly to the bottom of their pref sheet, making it extraordinarily difficult even for the teams that pref them to get those judges in a round in which they're not debating another contemporary team. The strike system you propose has been attempted at national qualifying tournaments I've attended, including Flint Hills NFL some time ago and the old Salina Diocese qualifier. Here is what happens: the nature of the pool means of the five judges who roll into the round, generally only one of them is a contemporary judge. The coach of the less contemporary team in the round strikes that judge instantaneously. As a result, the contemporary judges sit in the hospitality room for the entire event. On rare occasion TWO contemporary judges roll onto the same panel, meaning the second-most-contemporary judge survives the strike and subsequently judges with two parents. Meanwhile, the implementation of the two reforms proposed above delays the start of each round by 30-45 minutes. In very short order you reach a point at which the judges are no longer available for the rounds to which they originally committed. I am fully sympathetic to your concerns. I see absolutely no way in which they can be addressed under the current NFL format. The scarcity of contemporary judges, and the splitting of that limited pool with multiple qualifying tournaments, is insurmountable. I wish it were otherwise.
  23. Cracked.com is awesome, btw. Robert Brockway in particular might be the most consistently funny writer on the planet at the moment. If Fowler keeps besmirching it, hands will be thrown.
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