08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

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08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by millionwaves » Mon Aug 11, 2008 12:56 am

In this thread, share your predictions for the 2008-2009 college quizbowl season.

I'll start off with some:
My Rankings wrote: ACF Nationals

1. Brown

With Eric Mukherjee continuing his meteoric rise to prominence and Jerry's ability to get many questions at high levels, I look for this team to win ACF Nationals this year. Dennis Jang will continue to contribute, and as Aaron Rosenburg proved at CO and at last year's nationals, he can play quizbowl at that level and still pull points. Freshman Michael Wright, who led Eden Prairie to consistent success in Minnesota, will also be joining this team and may be a surprise member of the A team. I was surprised last year when Brown didn't win the title, but it's my prediction that things will turn out differently this time.

2. Chicago

It's hard to know what to expect from Chicago, as we never seem to have clear information about who's going to make up their A team and who will miss their flight. Nevertheless, Seth and Selene will ensure that this team is highly placed indeed, and the specter of Susan Ferrari contributes to an otherwise excellent team. New additions this year include history specialist Paul Gauthier, which is something that this team could undoubtedly use, and arguably the best entering freshman in the country, Shantanu Jha.

3. Minnesota

I think it's fair to say that many of us were shocked by Brendan Byrne's play at Chicago Open this year. Brendan will join already established excellent undergrad trio Hart, Carson, and Kandlikar to form what is in my opinion the most formidable undergraduate-only team ever. Although I don't think they can defeat Brown or Chicago, I wouldn't be shocked if they did. It should go without saying that I expect these players to sweep the undergraduate titles at both nationals this year.

4. Illinois

We're returning everyone that we had for Nationals last year, to my knowledge. I doubt too much will change for us except that Maryland won't place and Minnesota is relatively a lot better than they used to be.

5. Stanford

CAVEAT: If Andrew Yaphe breaks his presumed resolve not to play national tournaments, Stanford obviously moves sharply up.

I'm afraid that I don't know that much about these guys, other than that they made the top bracket at nationals last year and seemed to be very sharp and balanced. I look for them to repeat their high standing, but not to make any surprising wins over teams mentioned above.

6. Harvard

This team is very good, and the steady improvement of Ted Gioia and question-writing machine Andy Watkins ought to provide some new firepower for the already established foursome.

Other teams that I expect to place highly:

7. Dartmouth

8. UC-Irvine

9. Maryland


I should also note that I expect Missouri to win the Division II title for ACF, and I mentioned above that I expect Minnesota to win undergrad.
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08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Matt Weiner » Mon Aug 11, 2008 6:16 am

I will now celebrate my on-schedule status for VCU Open writing by taking a break to compose a rambling, semi-coherent prediction post under the influence of writer-performance enhancing drugs.

We're never going to go a season without someone upsetting the predictions, which is why we play the games and all. There's going to be a grad movement we don't know about yet, someone's going to have spent the whole summer studying, a dominant history player will emerge to fill the void left by the absence of Kemezis, Hoppes, and Meigs...with that caveat, I think Trygve has generally the right idea about how things will shake out. Brown is an ever-improving monster, yet betting against a Seth-led Chicago team is always a dumb thing to do, and the sky's the limit for Minnesota. And hey, I hear that Mike Sorice dude is capable of beating anyone without it being a huge surprise, so it's a four-team race even before you account for the fact that Stanford, Dartmouth, Irvine, and TWO (2!) Harvard teams also have legitimate claims on the top tier and shouldn't lose their monocles if they end up in a national final this year. I'd also keep an eye out for MIT, who quietly finished eighth at Nationals last year and is returning all of their players as far as I know.

Who else is going to be a threat to win some tournaments over the course of this year at the regional level, and what are the prospects for all the active teams? Let's find out:

MID ATLANTIC: Princeton, maybe, if they can refocus on solid academic stuff--the canon has passed their older players by somewhat, but Mason is a legitimate ACF dude and Kunle has a great base to improve from considering he's only going to be a sophomore. Other people to look out for in the Mid-Atlantic besides the most expected pecking order (Maryland/Princeton in the finals most of the time, Swarthmore and VCU in the next tier, UNC having a good shot to go as high as #1 in the tournament if they show up to a few more things) would have to include the revitalized Virginia team, which has a solid core in Will Butler and the dramatic return of Leo Wolpert and could find all sorts of former high school bigshots and generally competent people like Noah Mink to fill the squad out. If Penn chooses to play as much in the DC area in 2009 as they did in 2008, they could notch some Top 3 hardware; I whimsically have included them in the Northeast predictions instead. I'm not sure who's coming back from the Wake Forest team that went undefeated at D2 Sectionals last year, but I hope it's people who have the hunger to translate that into overall success. Duke's quirky habit of never playing NAQT Sectionals or ACF Regionals may or may not continue; their habit of being an OK but not great team that won't dethrone Maryland, Princeton, or North Carolina for tournament championships this year is certain to continue. A rumored new team at George Mason might turn some heads. Rutgers-Newark is a team that always seems to have great people who know a lot, but has had issues translating that into high finishes in the past; perhaps this will be their year. Alas, Rutgers-New Brunswick, it will not be yours. Let's also not forget that the majority of M-A college tournaments these days feature some overachieving high school team showing up to wreck the place. There isn't a single team I listed who is not in danger of losing to Charter, Walter Johnson, Gonzaga, or Hunter on any given weekend. I hear Maggie Walker is getting that good again as well. Yeah, you could see a Top 25 college team finish behind no less than 5 high school teams at a college tournament in this region. Now that's parity.

MIDWEST: Carleton may pull one or two Midwest tournaments out from under Chicago, Illinois, and Minnesota; in fact, I predict they will have just the right amount of actual skill combined with Zen-like patience for awful ideas executed even more awfully to make it through the annual sack of oranges to the head of the quizbowl community known as TTGT11 without melting down, while all the other heavy hitters who bother to show up will explode with rage one by one. Those four teams are pretty much the beginning and end of the story in terms of actually winning tournaments, though Iowa, Lawrence, WUSTL, and a reinvigorated Ohio State (Brian Saxton and Jacob Durst are both for real, and Ohio State's returning players aren't exactly bad either) will play respectably and occasionally show up in the Top 3...I certainly wouldn't put it past Iowa to upset anybody, save maybe a full-strength Chicago team, at Sectionals, but they will not do quite as well at non-NAQT stuff. As always, Truman and S&T will be decent, plus there's the wild card of the new Missouri team and the possibility of last year's Grinnell team, which acquitted itself well in D2, continuing onward and upward. Over on the right-hand side of the Midwest, Carnegie Mellon is a good team, and Case Western has potential. I am also hearing faint rumblings about Michigan moving somewhat back towards its former glory, especially with an excellent recruiting class consisting of nearly all of high-finishing HSNCT team Novi plus HSNCT top scorer Kurtis Droge.

NORTHEAST: MIT, Harvard A, Harvard B, Dartmouth, and Brown are all Top 10 national teams. On the one hand, this means everyone else is going to have a tough time picking up any hardware on the Boston circuit this year. On the other hand, it means just making the playoff bracket will be a legitimate accomplishment, so every game is going to be hard-fought and meaningful at these tournaments. Of all the non-national-championship-contender teams who are often found at tournaments in the greater Massachusetts area, Cornell is clearly the "best of the rest"; they have a bittersweet year of stomping on all the non-elite teams and finishing last in the playoff bracket ahead of them. The rumored Letzler-Yetman-Tabachnik team at CUNY would be interesting to watch and could threaten upsets on a regular basis if it actually exists. Nathan Freeburg, do you have an African Literature class you can sign up for to round out that squad? Also, Penn made a bit of noise last year, and with Chris White, whose legitimate knowledge in his favorite categories scales very well with difficulty, now on that team, they have a good future ahead, at least after some graduations clear up the logjam at the top of this circuit. Brandeis--look to the future. You have some good players and you have some things that are more important than leaning broadly on giveaways, like Hannah Kirsch's real knowledge of music at all difficulty levels and your team's desire to play real tournaments. Yale--you may have less desire, but you have just as much talent, so develop it. Whoever is ready to pounce when Jerry is deported to the Jewish Autonomous Oblast and Dartmouth and Harvard graduate their entire lineups will be very glad they stayed prepared. Columbia is already a good team and has the potential to nibble at the edges of great as early as this semester, as long as they avoid the looming spectre of getting banned from every potential tournament site due to arrears on last year's registration fees. In any case, I hope their proposed open tournament comes together this year, as I was forlorn at missing my chance to drink iced tea at Sylvia's with Dan Passner last spring.

WEST: Nobody's going to consistently challenge Irvine or Stanford on regular-difficulty questions in California just yet, though UCLA and Berkeley are chief programs that come to mind as having enough institutional coherence and decent-to-good players to do so in the future if they get one more player who's willing to work. And of course, when Berkeley starts playing their casual old people or the questions go to ACF Fall level or below, anything can happen. Stanford B is always really good on the regional level, though it hasn't translated to success against the national elite just yet. The Pomona-Claremont-whatever program will probably go to more stuff and probably do pretty well at it. UCSD will be new, enthusiastic, pleasant, and about a .500 team at general events, though they are the smart man's dark horse pick in D2. The new University of Washington team of Mike Bentley and Brittany Clark will go 12-0 at all the tournaments held in Vancouver, if any tournaments are actually held there this year.

SOUTHEAST: The two pillars of the Vanderbilt team--gone. Billy Beyer and Matt Alford, the heavy lifters at Florida State--gone. Alabama's core scorers--I think they're gone. Ahmad Ragab--rumored gone from USF. The one-year "Charlie Steinhice as player" experiment at UTC--reportedly come to a close. There's a huge power vacuum here waiting for someone to exploit it. Will that someone be a Georgia team that was close to contending last year and is returning its two best players? Perhaps South Carolina, a team that seems to do better the harder the questions get? Maybe the young Clemson team, which hits the ground running with the two high scorers from Dorman's high school powerhouse last year, including George Stevens, who demonstrated that he's already on the elite level with his performance at the Chicago History Doubles? Don't count out Louisville, a team that was really on the upswing in 06 and 07 but went on semi-hiatus when #1 player Monica Marks spent a year abroad. If she's back and ready to roll, they could certainly win a bunch of events. I could also see good things in Virginia Tech's future now that they no longer have College Bowl to distract them, especially if Jason Thweatt plans to play more than just ICT this time. I'd like to see VT at more Richmond and DC events, but I'll account for them in this section since it's where they seem to play most of the time. One thing's for sure--the Southeast had better hope that Dorman HS doesn't follow the lead of the DC-area powers and start playing collegiate tournaments, because they would probably win every single college tournament in the Southeast if they played them.

SOUTHWEST: Matt Nance will lead Texas to a bunch of just-good-enough victories until one of the Oklahoma teams decides to step it up a notch. Eric Kwartler will play exactly one tournament this year; whether it's ACF Nationals or a mirror of Sword Bowl remains to be seen. Tulsa will be decent but not decent enough to beat the strongest possible Texas team. I still will have no idea what teams in Louisiana actually exist. Maggie Larkin's debut on the Oklahoma team is eagerly anticipated.

CANADA: Toronto and Western Ontario are very good teams. They will split all the local events in Ontario, and they are encouraged to come to more stuff on this side of the border as well. I hope someone wises up about the date and editing of VETO next summer, because I'd really like an excuse to visit Toronto.

OTHER REGIONS: What, like the Syria Sectional Meigs wants to hold? Um...there's supposed to be a new team at Boise State this year. BYU sent a foursome to ACF Regionals in 2008 and I hope they're going to be even more active this time around. Maybe the potential influx of former College Bowl players will let some kind of circuit finally take hold in the Mountain Time Zone, but it'll take some time for them to get up to speed. I guess there are also a lot of teams in Florida, both at the CC and university level. Other than a confidence that Aaron Kashtan will score a lot of tossup points and know everything about comic books, I know nothing about the teams in Florida so I can't say anything further.

Of course, the question on everyone's tongue is--who will win such prestigious tournaments held on high school questions as CUT, Rollapalooza, and that thing at Macalester? Answer: There will be no winners, spiritually speaking, but Mike Sorice will likely pick up a nice book on sociologists of the Hoysala Dynasty for scoring 165 PPG on an IS set.

Actual predictions for nationals...Brown and Chicago are the best ACF teams in terms of "the best potential teams made up of four people who attend those schools" right now. But, the question of which individuals will actually show up to St. Louis in April is a closely guarded secret. In any case, I don't think I will compromise my objectivity as tournament director by stating what everybody knows: either Brown or Chicago will win ACF Nationals this year.

At ICT, Brown may make use of their new recruit, who was an NAQT machine in high school. Chicago may make use of the fact that they're Chicago, they still have Seth and a bunch of other great players, and they have finished lower than third at NAQT exactly once ever. Minnesota may combine their status as perhaps the third-best real team to begin with, with Brendan's freakish ability to figure out NAQT questions, and either challenge for a spot in the final or become the first-ever all-undergrad team to win a medal spot by comfortably finishing third. Of course, NAQT being NAQT, you shouldn't rule out any of the other seven teams on my list of the elite (Dartmouth, Irvine, Illinois, Stanford, Harvard A, Harvard B, and MIT) from trophy contention. Math tells us that at least two of those teams will drop to the second playoff bracket and terrorize everybody else there on Saturday afternoon, so watch out.

Minnesota is taking the team that won the ACF Undergrad title last year and adding a new #1 player, so they're the logical favorites to repeat there. At ICT Undergrad, can the Harvard seniors' seemingly mystical grokking of the NAQT wavelength keep them ahead of a Minnesota team that, judging from their megadecibelled expletives, was not feeling it at ICT last year? Maybe so, but I'd advise Andrew Hart to study up on failed health insurance legislation either way. As always, Dartmouth will be a strong challenger for any Undergraduate title, and there's the newly grad-free Maryland A waiting to pounce savagely on any weakness in the teams above. North Carolina, VCU, Truman State, Cornell, Swarthmore, and Missouri S&T will also surprise any other all-UG teams caught napping; while it may be unrealistic to expect anyone outside of the Harvard-Minnesota-Dartmouth troika to actually win the UG title at either national, the teams I listed will all be ready to step into a lower medal spot if anyone falters. Williams might also be good, though they have to go to some real tournaments before we can say anything further. One thing's for sure--if Chris Ray completes the NAQT grand slam of HSNCT, DII, DI, and Undergrad in four straight years, he will have earned it against this field. Let's also not forget up and comers like Western Ontario, Lawrence, and Carnegie Mellon, who made it happen in D2 last year and hopefully will keep their eyes on the next level during the coming seasons.

Meanwhile, in Division II...we have the least predictable of the races. Every year, people confidently proclaim that [school high school superstar X is attending] is the favorite in DII. By my estimation, the team with the best high school senior of the previous year on it has actually managed to win DII a grand total of one time since NAQT started awarding the title in 1998, when Maryland with freshman Chris Ray won in 07. This unpredictability happens for various reasons, the most obvious being that national championship level college quizbowl isn't about cruising on what you knew in high school, it's about assembling a team of people who are willing to learn more. Also, some of the lateral thinking tactics that work in high school don't pay off as much at the college level (yes, even NAQT DII has a realness to it compared to a lot of what happens in HS) so players who were just outside the elite tier in high school can leapfrog their former betters if it turns out they had more of a real knowledge base. Also, because like half of the teams that won D2 had upperclassmen on them who had never bothered to qualify for ICT before, or find totally new quizbowl players who don't give a crap about how good anyone was in high school; that definitely has something to do with it.

Anyway. We all know that UCSD, Clemson, and Missouri are having new programs started by players who are already very good and have a great understanding of what going from good to great at the college level requires. We also know that places like Carleton, Harvard, Chicago, and to some extent Yale and Stanford are skilled at getting their best four recruits up to speed quickly and being in contention for D2 in most years. Kurtis Droge really earned his HSNCT scoring title in 2008, and will be going to traditionally D2-friendly Michigan. And of course, we don't know who's going to be this year's Robert Beard or Vik Vaz--someone who was pretty good on the local level in high school, didn't get much national exposure, and had a hidden core of true knowledge that he was able to use to explode on everyone at D2 ICT. I guess right now I might lean towards UCSD as being the most likely of those squads to send a well-rounded team of four to the ICT, but it's basically an arbitrary selection. If we're talking about a race among the recent high school stars, it all depends on who does the work over the course of the year. But, if some team nobody thought to mention ends up winning this, I won't be surprised, since that's what happens in D2 pretty much every year.

It should be noted that Shantanu Jha proclaimed to me his lack of interest in playing DII, joining a list from this past year, including Evan Adams and Gautam Kandlikar, of freshmen who want to play the main event as soon as possible. It's laudable, but it also means you shouldn't be betting on Chicago in D2 before you see what they put together for Sectionals.

At ACF, all of those teams are also in play, and any all-freshman squads who played D2 at ICT last year but skipped ACF Nationals retain one more year of ACF D2 status. Carnegie Mellon, Swarthmore, Lawrence, Western Ontario, Carleton--I'm reasonably confident this means you. Come on down to St. Louis and give the D2 thing one last go. If I have to make a pick, I guess Clemson makes some sense, but again it could be Missouri, or UCSD, or Carleton, or any of like 10 other teams, so it will be a fun tournament to watch.

At the CC level, you'd have to be a gibbering moron to not pick Valencia as the favorite. However, any Alabama schools that receive parts of the Brindlee Mountain diaspora, as well as the always-plucky J Sargeant Reynolds team, should at least be on the radar screen.

Other questions for this year that everyone wants an answer to:

*Will the Brown team's beards eventually cover their entire faces, werewolf-style?
*Is Harry Nelson ever going to explain what he didn't like about FICHTE?
*What's going on at William & Mary?
*How many years does staying up for three days to finish a tournament take off your life, anyway?
*Will there be any people who play both an academic national and TRASHionals this year?
*The BEES thing: A fad past its time?
*Will UTC send its past packet sets to collegiate.quizbowlpackets.com?

It should be an interesting year as the ramifications of College Bowl's demise begin to be felt and a bunch of new programs pop up, alongside the extreme parity that has led me to dub 10 teams elite and nearly 30 teams contenders for tournament titles. I'm looking forward to seeing how things turn out.

Here's my preseason Top 25:

1. Brown
2. Chicago
3. Minnesota
4. Illinois
5. Stanford A

The 5 teams above could win ICT or ACF without surprising me at all.

6. Harvard A
7. Dartmouth
8. Irvine
9. Harvard B
10. MIT

The 10 teams above could finish Top 3 at ICT or ACF without surprising me at all.

11. Maryland
12. North Carolina
13. Carleton
14. Princeton
15. Iowa
16. WUSTL
17. Toronto
18. Swarthmore
19. VCU
20. UCLA
21. Texas
22. Georgia
23. Truman State
24. Cornell
25. Columbia

Last teams out: Carnegie Mellon, Western Ontario, Stanford B
Likely entrants to the list once we see their first tournament performance: Virginia, Clemson, Florida
Watch out in six months for: Missouri, UCSD, Lawrence, Missouri S&T, Penn, Ohio State, Louisville, Dartmouth B, Michigan, Chicago B
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Ethnic history of the Vilnius region » Mon Aug 11, 2008 8:27 am

Matt Weiner wrote:One thing's for sure--the Southeast had better hope that Dorman HS doesn't follow the lead of the DC-area powers and start playing collegiate tournaments, because they would probably win every single college tournament in the Southeast if they played them.
I kind of hope they do start playing in college tournaments. It would forever destroy the idiotic notion that some teams in the region still have that "only grad students who play quizbowl for a bajillion years can possibly be good on legitimate questions." It might also light a fire in the region for teams to, you know, get good at quizbowl. Plus, the region needs Dorman players to start playing quizbowl even after high school. I'm very encouraged to see George and Nick starting a team at Clemson, and I hope more Dorman players follow their lead in the future.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by ValenciaQBowl » Mon Aug 11, 2008 8:43 am

Hey, it's very cool to see Matt throwing out some CC predictions; I'm always glad to see our circuit merit some discussion.

However, though I'm glad Valencia's historical work has made us a fair pick, we're returning none of our five players from last year's CC ICT winner. Of course, we had five new starters last year too, but all five were second-year players, and at our level, since nearly no one has HS experience, the big jump usually comes the summer after their first year. This year we only have three serious returnees, none of whom had time for summer practice, so we have a lot of work to do. Chipola, Broward and Manatee CCs will all be championship ready in Florida, and Bevill and Snead and Faulkner and the usual Alabama teams will all be good, too. I think (I hope) Valencia will be in the mix by spring. Ifurther hope that the guys at Reynolds get it going as a team and help get a Virginia circuit working.

Florida's four-year circuit does seem a bit down. But I haven't heard anything about Billy NOT playing for FSU, though maybe he's finally followed through on his desire to drop out of society to read Tom Robbins novels in a yurt in Kyrgyzstan. And I think Ahmad will still be around. So as usual, FSU, UF, and USF are the only teams down here, though some former Valencians are trying to get teams going at UCF and New School. If nothing else, I expect some spirited singles matches on my porch the weekends after fall tournaments in other states.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Gautam » Mon Aug 11, 2008 1:47 pm

Matt Weiner wrote: Duke's quirky habit of never playing NAQT Sectionals or ACF Regionals may or may not continue;
I know that Igor Luzhansky from Eden Prairie is heading over there, and intends to do some real quiz bowl. I don't exactly feel him being a great leader for the years to come, but he can probably take the team to some good finishes.

Also in the Midatlantic, VCU should be good.

Matt Weiner wrote:MIDWEST: stuff about Lawrence, Truman State, Missouri S&T and Mizzou, Michigan
I am excited to see these teams make a big mark on the circuit this year, and I think they have the resources and the discipline to get to make a noise. I also agree that Michigan might return to being a great team, with the impressive cadre of incoming freshman.

Obviously, Chicago and Illinois should be great teams too, at any level.
Matt Weiner wrote:NORTHEAST: Stuff about Harvard, Dartmouth and Brown
Harvard already has a fine team, with Ted, Watkins, and Bruce forming a solid second team who're committed to improving. I also think they're getting some beasts from TJ and Dallas from MLK, which should certainly make solid additions.

We played some great games against Dartmouth last year at the ICT and ACF Nats, and they should be a good team.

Of course, as for Brown, His Holiness Sri Sri Lord Eric Mukherjee, Grand Guru of Science will continue his monstrosity and blow away everyone's hopes of the ACF Nationals title. As for ICT, I don't know how they might fare there, but then again, I haven't seen the squad play NAQT stuff.

Cornell and MIT should also be good.
Matt Weiner wrote:WEST: stuff about Stanford, Irvine, UCSD
I really don't know much about this circuit. Stanford will continue to have a great team, and I think they will certainly be able to make it to the top bracket at both tournaments. Irvine should also do well, and I think they can continue with the top bracket appearance at ICT; they should continue to be solid at all tournaments.

I think Matt is right about UCSD making some noise in this region. I was really impressed by Auroni Gupta's performance at HSNCT, and he has worked hard to develop into a solid player.
Matt Weiner wrote:SOUTHEAST: stuff about Vanderbilt, FSU, USF, Dorman grads, and others
I hadn't heard about Ahmad and Billy retiring from the game, but if it is true, they will be sorely missed. The absence of Matt Keller will have an impact on the circuit as well. Dorman grads should definitely pump in some energy in the circuit and I see them doing really well in this circuit.

The rest of the circuit I don't know much about but things should happen everywhere. I think the lack of CBI leaves open a lot of possibilities.
Matt Weiner wrote:Actual predictions for nationals...Brown and Chicago are the best ACF teams in terms of "the best potential teams made up of four people who attend those schools" right now. But, the question of which individuals will actually show up to St. Louis in April is a closely guarded secret. In any case, I don't think I will compromise my objectivity as tournament director by stating what everybody knows: either Brown or Chicago will win ACF Nationals this year.
Sounds about right.
Matt Weiner wrote:seemingly mystical grokking of the NAQT wavelength and "destructive interference associated with " Minnesota "that certainly was," from their megadecibelled expletives, was not feeling it at ICT last year! Maybe so, but I'd advise Andrew Hart to study up on failed health insurance legislation either way.
I'm working on parts of it. The key to all of it is to master senator bowl and intimate knowledge of activities of Gazprom.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by vandyhawk » Mon Aug 11, 2008 6:35 pm

For the national title, I don't have much to add. It'd be hard to bet against Chicago if they take last year's championship team and then add Paul Gauthier to it, but even so, I'd put it at like 53/47 for them against Brown. Minnesota and Illinois are certainly capable too, but I think it will be tough for MN to overcome the experience of Brown and Chicago, and as good as he is, without more help, not sure Sorice can carry a team over the teams with multiple very good players.

The Southeast should have a lot more parity next year it seems. If Billy and Ahmad are actually gone, then I think UGA is the clear favorite at any event, other than when Aaron Kashtan shows up to something. If those two are still playing though, I think UGA, FSU (with Billy but w/out Matt A.), USF, and UF (with Kashtan) will all be fairly evenly matched. I wouldn't count out Vandy either. Jack was a bit off his game at the end of last season, but is a capable player, and he led a team w/out Paul or me to a 2nd place finish at MLK last year. I think Vandy's real threat is in DII, though - if you take the two freshmen we had who did pretty well last year and add in Greg Gauthier and Keshav from TJ (both of whom I hear want to play), I like their chances. Of course, if Clemson plays DII, it'd be hard to bet against them too.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by ClemsonQB » Mon Aug 11, 2008 9:09 pm

I hate to burst everyone's bubble, but Clemson quizbowl next year and for years to come will likely consist of myself, Freddy DeAngelis and two hobos we pick up off the street. Nick is done with quizbowl, or atleast he is done with playing. Thankfully there is a very good chance that Freddy will go to Clemson, but don't look for us to be winning SE tournaments, much less DII at nationals...
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Mike Bentley » Mon Aug 11, 2008 9:23 pm

No England predictions Matt? I want to know what teams to pick in my University Challenge pool (assuming this is still happening with the whole CBI going bust thing).
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Matt Weiner » Tue Aug 12, 2008 2:34 am

Bentley Like Beckham wrote:No England predictions Matt? I want to know what teams to pick in my University Challenge pool (assuming this is still happening with the whole CBI going bust thing).
Prediction, England will spend thousands of hours in website-creation and discussion on the point of how some 45-year-old fake student is the greatest player ever, and that player will then play an NAQT high school set that gets shipped over there and complain about how impossible it is.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Mechanical Beasts » Tue Aug 12, 2008 8:56 am

A Coachman wrote: I also think they're getting some beasts from TJ and Dallas from MLK, which should certainly make solid additions.
Beasts from TJ would be (welcome) news to me. I NEED NAMES.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by theattachment » Tue Aug 12, 2008 11:34 am

A Coachman wrote:
Matt Weiner wrote: Duke's quirky habit of never playing NAQT Sectionals or ACF Regionals may or may not continue;
I know that Igor Luzhansky from Eden Prairie is heading over there, and intends to do some real quiz bowl. I don't exactly feel him being a great leader for the years to come, but he can probably take the team to some good finishes.
Igor likely would continue to be good at science and myth, but I don't know about anything else. I'm just happy to not need to follow him on his attempts to burn down schools, student unions, and/or buses.
A Coachman wrote:
Matt Weiner wrote:seemingly mystical grokking of the NAQT wavelength and "destructive interference associated with " Minnesota "that certainly was," from their megadecibelled expletives, was not feeling it at ICT last year! Maybe so, but I'd advise Andrew Hart to study up on failed health insurance legislation either way.
I'm working on parts of it. The key to all of it is to master senator bowl and intimate knowledge of activities of Gazprom.
If I break my vow to not play NAQT this year (I'll be eligible at the U by SCT) we'll at least be decent at the crap that settles for DII NAQT pet topics.

Also, Eric and Jerry need to e-mail Michael when he gets back from Soviet Russia, as he indicated his desire to quit quiz bowl. That wouldn't break my prediction of Brown and Chicago being the final at every tournament that they meet in, but still.
Colin O'Donnell -- ex-Eden Prairie High School (man, that feels nice to say), eventually University of Minnesota

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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Mechanical Beasts » Tue Aug 12, 2008 12:56 pm

Mike the Beard Recycler wrote:Also, Eric and Jerry need to e-mail Michael when he gets back from Soviet Russia, as he indicated his desire to quit quiz bowl. That wouldn't break my prediction of Brown and Chicago being the final at every tournament that they meet in, but still.
I did the same thing after high school, and look where it got me.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by BuzzerZen » Tue Aug 12, 2008 12:59 pm

everyday847 wrote:
A Coachman wrote: I also think they're getting some beasts from TJ and Dallas from MLK, which should certainly make solid additions.
Beasts from TJ would be (welcome) news to me. I NEED NAMES.
I'm pretty sure none of the TJ '08 people who were active this past year are going to Harvard, actually.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Gautam » Tue Aug 12, 2008 1:00 pm

Nick Nolte wrote:
everyday847 wrote:
A Coachman wrote: I also think they're getting some beasts from TJ and Dallas from MLK, which should certainly make solid additions.
Beasts from TJ would be (welcome) news to me. I NEED NAMES.
I'm pretty sure none of the TJ '08 people who were active this past year are going to Harvard, actually.
Nevermind then, I was mistaken.

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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by alkrav112 » Tue Aug 12, 2008 1:05 pm

I really like Matt (Weiner)'s predictions and have very little to add on my own behalf except that we are returning every starting member from last year's squad, and only one person is becoming a grad student. Our NAQT Div II team, despite finishing second at its competitive sectional, did not qualify for Div II ICT, and as such, if those experienced players choose to retain their eligibility for next year's ICT (and considering the addition of Kurtis and several Novi players), I don't see any reason why they won't win their division (or at least place top 3) at ICT.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by vandyhawk » Tue Aug 12, 2008 2:52 pm

everyday847 wrote:
A Coachman wrote: I also think they're getting some beasts from TJ and Dallas from MLK, which should certainly make solid additions.
Beasts from TJ would be (welcome) news to me. I NEED NAMES.
I think Dallas is going to Yale, isn't he? At least that's what he said when they came to Regionals.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Mechanical Beasts » Tue Aug 12, 2008 3:00 pm

vandyhawk wrote:
everyday847 wrote:
A Coachman wrote: I also think they're getting some beasts from TJ and Dallas from MLK, which should certainly make solid additions.
Beasts from TJ would be (welcome) news to me. I NEED NAMES.
I think Dallas is going to Yale, isn't he? At least that's what he said when they came to Regionals.
Nope. Since Harvard didn't have EASC last year, he hadn't heard back from Harvard yet. We've got him.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by cvdwightw » Tue Aug 12, 2008 9:14 pm

I think the West will largely depend on how much some of the grad students play. Brendan was swamped with M.A. work last year, but he might be coming to more stuff. I'll probably be cutting back slightly on playing. Obviously the strength of UCLA and Berkeley depend on how much Ray Luo and Paul Lujan play (that is, if Paul isn't done yet).

At full strength, I'd say Stanford is a clear number 1 with Irvine a clear 2. I'd flip us on NAQT if Eric isn't playing, that would give us a leg up on the geography/CE/PC/GK that makes up 1/3 of the packet. UCLA's got a couple of solid young players; if Tirth (from the UCLA/UCI Cardinal Classic team and UCLA's ACF Nats team) and Chris (also from their Nats team) continue to get better throughout the year, they could have a reasonable NAQT D2 contender.

I don't know where any of the good California seniors except Auroni and Neiman are going, and I'm not sure that any of the others plan to continue in college.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by yoda4554 » Wed Aug 13, 2008 2:21 pm

Regarding Matt's brief comment on Williams: our 05-06 Golden Age was mostly led by the '06 (me, Dan Klein, and Brian Hirshman) and '08 (David Mathias, Zachary Thomas, Chris Paci) groups, both of whom are now graduated. There's all of two people left from last year's team, one of whom is graduating in January, so I wouldn't really bet on them being much of a presence in the Northeast. However, Zach (who is incredibly dangerous and deep on history, physics, CE, and geography, and would be known as such if the team had gone to any tournaments for the past couple years) will be at MIT next year and may do some playing there; Klein is going to Brown, which should be a boon for them, because I've always thought that what they really needed to get over the top at a national was a strong all-around science player :grin:.

Anyway, as for CUNY, I'll happily play a few tournaments if Doug and Guy want me to, and we shouldn't get totally destroyed even by the beasts of the northeast.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by grapesmoker » Wed Aug 13, 2008 3:13 pm

yoda4554 wrote:Klein is going to Brown, which should be a boon for them, because I've always thought that what they really needed to get over the top at a national was a strong all-around science player :grin:
Well, you laugh, but we only have one more year of basking in the glory that is Eric Mukherjee; a good science player who can answer chemistry and bio questions would be a great addition to our team for the post-Mukherjee era.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by No Rules Westbrook » Wed Aug 13, 2008 10:10 pm

Westbrook's Postulate (it's not a Rule!): All of the good people who we all know about, and who have been good forever, will continue to be good. All other people will be less good.

My point being: It's kind of easy to forget that being good at this game takes for-fucking-ever. It takes even longer than for-fucking-ever if you have some kind of life or something. But, don't get me wrong, I love the heady optimism in this thread. Come on, every high school player mentioned in this thread, show me the true power of your blade.

My predictions: Chicago wins, Brown is good but finishes second because Chicago is Chicago, Minnesota could be really good but probably finishes third
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Sima Guang Hater » Fri Aug 15, 2008 2:41 am

grapesmoker wrote:Well, you laugh, but we only have one more year of basking in the glory that is Eric Mukherjee; a good science player who can answer chemistry and bio questions would be a great addition to our team for the post-Mukherjee era.
Rosenberg's already being trained as my replacement.

In short, Brown, Minnesota, and Chicago will probably be 1-3 in some order, followed by Harvard, Stanford, and a whole host of others already mentioned in this thread. I think the most interesting trend is that the gap between mid-level and upper-level teams is sharply narrowing. I suppose this is the product of the proliferation of good quizbowl at both the high school and college levels, and the increasing participation of high schoolers in high-level college events, which is pretty cool.

One prediction I'm going to make is that with the proliferation of good quizbowl everywhere, teams can no longer be built around a single good player and expect to place highly, at least not quite in the same way as two years ago. Sure, many teams have a solid, clear #1 (Us, Illinois), but to even get into the top bracket anymore it seems like you need a solid #1 with solid backup. Teams like Dartmouth and Stanford that are built around four mid-to-upper level players are the teams that I think will surprise a lot of people. If all four of their members improve at even a marginal rate, they'll have a non-negligible chance at beating some of the top teams; the main thing that holds these teams back as of right now, in my opinion, is that their individual members don't have the level of "star power" that some members of the top 3 have. In short, they haven't breached that barrier between "specialist + marginal generalist" to "this person can buzz on any category against a decent team". If Randall, AJ, and Dominic manage to break that barrier by improving their individual games, for example, that team will be hard to beat.

Of course, the rate that we, Minnesota, and Chicago are improving isn't exactly zero either. It'll be interesting to see how Minnesota gels with their new number one scorer, and Chicago's new additions are certainly exciting. But I'm going to be narcissistic for a second and say that I'm even more interested to see how myself, Dennis, and Aaron can maximize our skills. I really do feel like by the end of the year the four of us can become approximate equals (plus or minus some order of magnitude - obviously we're not going to become four Jerrys), and that that's the only way that we can hope to win a national. All of the top teams, while very good, also have a good deal of untapped potential, and I think the team that manages to tap into it the most effectively will be the one that ends up winning.

I also predict that in the new power vacuum left by Meigs and Hoppes leaving, the team that can gain control of history will have a key advantage; I'd even go so far as to say that winning history is paramount to winning a championship. Paul Gauthier makes chicago a very hard team to bet against for this reason, but Brendan showed that his history knowledge is pretty comprehensive at CO. Plus, there's Jerry, who decent at that stuff. Clearly the solution is for me to memorize a few textbooks and change my major.

I also predict that the best active player in quizbowl will end up being either Seth, Jerry, or Mike. Again.

PS Quizbowl 2010 is also shaping up to be interesting. Massive power vacuums + key player movements, this ought to be good.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-TN) » Fri Aug 15, 2008 3:57 pm

Where is NOSTRADAMUSLOL?
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Theory Of The Leisure Flask » Sat Aug 16, 2008 5:11 pm

Matt Weiner wrote:I will now celebrate my on-schedule status for VCU Open writing by taking a break to compose a rambling, semi-coherent prediction post under the influence of writer-performance enhancing drugs.

(cut for pages of prognostication)
Yes, how about that on-schedule VCU Open!

:party:
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-TN) » Sat Aug 16, 2008 5:37 pm

Say it ain't so!
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Leo Wolpert » Sun Aug 17, 2008 2:44 am

Mr. Rakehell wrote:Say it ain't so!
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by AKKOLADE » Sun Aug 17, 2008 10:35 am

Mr. Rakehell wrote:Say it ain't so!
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by mhayes » Fri Aug 29, 2008 1:14 am

I still will have no idea what teams in Louisiana actually exist.
:lol:

Well, I founded the UL Lafayette team in 2001, though we participated in NAQT almost exclusively until about two years ago.

That was my fault.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by wd4gdz » Fri Aug 29, 2008 2:59 am

mhayes wrote:
I still will have no idea what teams in Louisiana actually exist.
:lol:

Well, I founded the UL Lafayette team in 2001, though we participated in NAQT almost exclusively until about two years ago.

That was my fault.
It's been really great seeing ULL at tons of non-NAQT circuit events in the last two years...
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by mhayes » Fri Aug 29, 2008 5:27 pm

It's been really great seeing ULL at tons of non-NAQT circuit events in the last two years...
Well I wouldn't say we've been at tons of events, but hopefully the guys there now will change things.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by The Ununtiable Twine » Sun Aug 31, 2008 1:27 pm

We've gotten a great deal of support lately, so we should definitely be around. Also, we're hosting a FEUERBACH mirror on 10/11.

Things are looking great for the club, although we'll probably be without Scott for most of the year except for the regional and national tournaments and perhaps ACF Fall. Then, of course, if I get my way, then we'll install the final piece of the puzzle and should be a pretty formidable opponent for just about anyone out there. Player participation has been a problem for us over the years, I do admit. It's tough to win without your #2 or your #3, but imagine trying to win without your #2, #3, and #4. It's tough, especially when they always seem to cancel on you at the last minute. That's what happened to us last year at SCT, plus I had a few drinks and didn't get any sleep, which never ever helps the cause, not to mention it's irresponsible.

The main problem with us has always been that we have never fielded our best four players on the same team. I could go through the reasons, but they include and are not limited to kidney stones and fall graduations...with that being said, given player retirements, ailments, whatever, our team this year will be the strongest we've ever had even if we go with our #1, #4, #5, and #6 for most tournaments. I don't know how deep we are 1 through 8, per se, but our team is incredibly deep 1 through 4 and each of us has a very broad and deep knowledge of almost all of the major areas of the canon. We are a bit pedestrian in some minor areas, admittedly, but if we do enough patchwork, we should be fine.

Oh yes, and since this is a prediction thread, I'll happily make one. I predict that we won't be going 2-10 anymore. Good riddance.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by ClemsonQB » Sun Sep 14, 2008 7:59 pm

Sure, this thread has been fairly necrotized, but I felt that it was important to amend my earlier statements here.

Nick Clusserath has decided to play quizbowl at Clemson.
Last edited by ClemsonQB on Sun Sep 14, 2008 8:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Matt Weiner » Sun Sep 14, 2008 8:05 pm

ClemsonQB wrote:Sure, this thread has been fairly necrolized, but I felt that it was important to amend my earlier statements here.

Nick Clusserath has decided to play quizbowl at Clemson.
http://www.hsquizbowl.org/dramaticnoise.mp3
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by BuzzerZen » Sun Sep 14, 2008 8:22 pm

Matt Weiner wrote:
ClemsonQB wrote:Sure, this thread has been fairly necrolized, but I felt that it was important to amend my earlier statements here.

Nick Clusserath has decided to play quizbowl at Clemson.
http://www.hsquizbowl.org/dramaticnoise.mp3
This is the best post ever.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by AKKOLADE » Sun Sep 14, 2008 9:32 pm

Matt Weiner wrote:
ClemsonQB wrote:Sure, this thread has been fairly necrolized, but I felt that it was important to amend my earlier statements here.

Nick Clusserath has decided to play quizbowl at Clemson.
http://www.hsquizbowl.org/dramaticnoise.mp3
B-B-B-B-B-BONUS GOLD STAR
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by theMoMA » Mon Sep 15, 2008 3:03 am

Discussion of tone policing can be found in the Forbidden Zone.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by No Rules Westbrook » Mon Sep 15, 2008 1:21 pm

Anyone who's been watching quizbowl for the last few years knows that you can't win without one thing: depth. Injuries take such a toll and that 5th man off the bench is key.

I mean, just imagine how crazy it would be if a team of only three people won ACF Nationals. No way.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Theory Of The Leisure Flask » Mon Sep 15, 2008 9:50 pm

Matt Weiner wrote: If Penn chooses to play as much in the DC area in 2009 as they did in 2008, they could notch some Top 3 hardware; I whimsically have included them in the Northeast predictions instead.
Since this thread has apparently been resurrected:

It's not whimsy that puts us in the Northeast bracket, it's the complete and total lack of fall Saturday tournaments in the Mid-Atlantic calendar this year that'd do it. Whose brilliant idea was it to move Terrapin to the spring, anyway?

Yeah, yeah, yeah, VCU, I know. That's about as Mid-Atlantic as Cornell. (We'll be there, but still.)
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Matt Weiner » Mon Sep 15, 2008 10:12 pm

Theory of the Leisure Flask wrote:
Matt Weiner wrote: If Penn chooses to play as much in the DC area in 2009 as they did in 2008, they could notch some Top 3 hardware; I whimsically have included them in the Northeast predictions instead.
Since this thread has apparently been resurrected:

It's not whimsy that puts us in the Northeast bracket, it's the complete and total lack of fall Saturday tournaments in the Mid-Atlantic calendar this year that'd do it. Whose brilliant idea was it to move Terrapin to the spring, anyway?

Yeah, yeah, yeah, VCU, I know. That's about as Mid-Atlantic as Cornell. (We'll be there, but still.)
I heard a rumor that the Illinois Open mirror at Maryland is going to be moved to Saturday the 15th.

Also, there's nothing going on around here on November 22 that I know of. Anyone who feels like throwing a tournament that day is more than welcome...
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by I'm a goff (in case you couldn't tell) » Mon Sep 15, 2008 10:13 pm

Matt Weiner wrote: Also, there's nothing going on around here on November 22 that I know of. Anyone who feels like throwing a tournament that day is more than welcome...
Reynolds' HS/Novice tournament is the 22nd.

viewtopic.php?f=8&t=6307

It's not exactly something Chris White could play at, but it's not nothing.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Matt Weiner » Mon Sep 15, 2008 10:25 pm

D'oh. And I did know about that, too, since it's being held where I live and VCU is sending a freshman team and stuff, and I'm reading at it.

Um...how about November 1 then!
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Theory Of The Leisure Flask » Mon Sep 15, 2008 10:59 pm

Matt Weiner wrote:I heard a rumor that the Illinois Open mirror at Maryland is going to be moved to Saturday the 15th.

Also, there's nothing going on around here on November 22 that I know of. Anyone who feels like throwing a tournament that day is more than welcome...
A Saturday IO mirror would probably have much better attendance; I heartily endorse this plan.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by theMoMA » Fri Sep 19, 2008 5:15 am

While I'm trying to avoid head explosion due to excessive writing of HS questions, maybe I can resurrect some srs bzns predictions in this thread.

Brown is still really good. They came about as close as you can come to winning ACF Nationals last year. Jerry is still quizbowl's answer to A-Rod, and Eric is on his way to becoming an elite #1 type player, if he isn't there already. Surely there isn't a better 1-2 punch in quizbowl today. Dennis and Aaron are the wild cards. Some of the other teams are adding elite players, but Brown is going to have to bank on internal improvement, or possibly a major breakthrough by an incoming freshman, in order to reach championship level.

Chicago won ACF Nationals with three players, and finished second at ICT to a team that doesn't exist anymore. They're adding an elite player to their presumed ACF roster in Paul Gauthier. With Seth as the backbone, this team could easily win both ICT and Nationals (finally getting David Seal his long-deserved championship). They have the NAQT specialists to challenge for ICT year after year, and adding one of the best history players in the game to the ACF-winning roster of Seth, Selene, and Susan certainly won't hurt their chances.

Illinois still has good players, including that dude named Mike Sorice. Will Turner is back and hopefully will come to many tournaments. Jeff Crean is a very knowledgeable history player, if he decides to play events. Trygve Meade has been writing a ton of questions and is only adding to his already impressive knowledge base. A Sorice-Turner-Crean-Meade lineup is capable of beating anyone in the country in any given game. Players like Greg Baboukis, Steven Canning, and Donald Taylor are all capable of contributing tossups if that lineup doesn't materialize come nats time.

Is there a fourth elite team? Stanford can certainly lay claim to that title; their numbers at Nationals put them right behind last year's Illinois team, which knocked off Brown. Kevin, Brian, Arnav, and Kristiaan cover all the canonical bases and are all still improving. Harvard can also boast a bevy of competent players, and they could certainly challenge any of the four teams already listed. Ted is quickly rocketing up the top-player ranks, and the Kyle-led Four Horsemen are all going to be seniors. If they find a points-maximizing lineup come nationals, they could easily be an elite title contender. Dartmouth and Cal-Irvine are three- or four-deep with big-time players, and not to be taken lightly.

So I guess this leaves us. I don't think anyone can take Minnesota for granted, but I honestly have no idea where we slot in. So in lieu of making a prediction, maybe I will just bare a bit of the quizbowl-related part of my soul for a second. It's about the coolest thing that I can think of that four kids from the suburbs of Minneapolis who started playing quizbowl four or five years ago and graduated high school within a year of each other are in this position of "wildcard contending team." Who would have ever thought that four players who combined to go 5-64-25 at the 2005 Minnesota NAQT State (first pyramidal tournament for Rob, Gautam, and me; third for Brendan!) would be here?

I've been around quizbowl for not quite four years, and I guess I've come to expect monumental change around every corner. My high school friends, teammates, and competitors are now some of the top college players, writers, and editors around the country. People I knew only as internet legends are now friends and co-editors. Personally, I've gone from not knowing the first thing about writing a tossup to editing some of the most prestigious tournaments in the country, and from being the worst player on my high school team to a competent college player. At the most exciting time to be a college quizbowl player, ever. There are more good writers and editors than ever before, more quality tournaments, more vanity events, and a greater sense of community.

I guess this turned out more like a commencement speech than a prediction post, but I really do hope everyone has a great season. I have no doubt it will be the best one yet.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Auroni » Fri Sep 19, 2008 7:37 am

sublime, Andrew

I guess I have a few words on this coming season as a new player. It looks to be every bit as exciting as Andrew has described and as many have predicted it will be. This point last year, I had no idea why pyramidal tossups are considered to be the epitome of academic challenges that we know as quizbowl. I just thought they were different, albeit more enjoyable. The crash course that I've gotten starting last December has to be one of the most unique opportunities ever.

I've been reading packets for a while before getting to know many of the amazing figures in this community, but that didn't even hint that there would be a vibrant group of individuals producing such quality sets for the purposes of pure quizbowl greatness. It's really humbling to start off this way and to literally be thrown onto the right track quizbowl-wise after a chance joining of the quizbowl irc room after accidentally finding the wiki.

Enough about me though; there is a great deal about this game and its players that I don't know. I've seen a handful of people involved in the circuit, and I've seen even fewer actually play. So my notions of which teams can beat which teams at which tournament are very precariously constructed, to the point where they're to be taken with much less than a grain of salt:

Chicago will continue to be good, even though the A-team players will probably see fewer games. The sort of talent which it has attracted over the years will serve them again, and some of the entering freshman are very talented at the game (besides a certain absinthe-loving one, I can think of another from La Jolla who has shown up to SoCal summer practices with an open mind and willingness to learn).

Brown has the famed Jerry-Eric one-two punch, and I'm certain that Dennis and Aaron can become feared players too, as they have demonstrated awesome depth of knowledge in the past, but I'm going to take the wittgenstein approach and not speak more since I don't really know much about them as players.

Ah, Minnesota. Well, their A-team is set and all four of them are awesome and I can't think of a discipline that they don't have covered. They've got a great points-getter in Brendan, but all four of them love to learn and have their depths of knowledge.. and are all very competent too. As for their other teams, Bernadette should be scoring some more points regardless of the lineup she's placed in, provided she overcomes some buzzer fear.

Going to give a shoutout to Trygve, who is excellent at literature and social sciences, along with other things that he knows for sure that I don't know about, who I think will really rock Illinois this upcoming season. Sorice will remain great and will play lots of things, but I have excellent hopes that Trygve will contribute a bunch more to that team. Dude, you know stuff and rock. I expect that you'll one-line tossups on Never Let Me Go and Hine-nui-te-po and the like without thinking. A couple of other players have been mentioned that I don't really know about, but yeah, that's a team that can win any match in any setting

Stanford and Dartmouth are documented examples of balanced teams which do really well put together, and I especially look forward to playing against them. UCI, UCLA, Cal, MIT, and a slew of other teams that perform solidly will, well, continue to do that.

Maryland won't have Magin, Bentley, or Meigs, but with Chris Ray, who's a incredible player, and Jeremy Eaton, who I'm certain will rise through the ranks, they have the foundation for a decent team.

Last thing: new and revitalized programs. I'm thinking of, among other schools: Clemson, Mizzou, and my own, UCSD. We're sort of in this together and I have great hopes that we can make ourselves mainstream and legit. Dees has proved himself to be a great organizer who's already sending teams places and I myself have a TWAIN team and ACF Fall team. Not sure about Clemson, but with two of Dorman's greatest, they're bound to be a team to watch.

Yeah, so it's 4:30 and all so I'll sign off here; hopefully what I said is something of interest and/or has something new and if not then you can toss my ass in the morning when I'm more tired.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Mechanical Beasts » Fri Sep 19, 2008 8:42 am

theMoMA wrote:I really do hope everyone has a great season. I have no doubt it will be the best one yet.
I applaud this sentiment.

Seriously, I'm terribly underqualified to predict what will happen this season. Teams returning lots of players will be even better than last year; Brown might have two of the four to six best players in quizbowl, Chicago will remain Chicago, and will be good for additional reasons.

Harvard will be a contender for reasons not at all involving me, even assuming I get on a competitive team. We have the potential to win humanities categories without much difficulty. Ted's pretty untouchable on lots of literature and arts, and is remarkably good at lots of philosophy and social science. Kyle knows history really well. So does Bruce. We also have absurd depth in our roster: while Ted is obviously our best lit and arts player, it's not like Julia did a poor job last year. Whoever ends up on Harvard A and B will be a substantial notch above Harvard C, in all likelihood, but I wouldn't be too surprised if Harvard B wins a game or two against A every once in a while.

The wild card, essentially, is me: if I can get good enough at science, then our team might be good enough to contend for titles. Hey, it might be good enough without, and it might have to be, since "good enough at science" means "able to get 1/4 tossups when Eric and Jerry are both in the room," which is a tall order, since I hear they're both pretty good. But if I can cut the tossup deficit in science to two instead of four by getting a tossup, then I think we can turn that into a lead if we play well in history and literature, which we should. I'll be a 10ppg player, but I'll be the 270th electoral vote, so to speak.

One way or another, even if my predictions are laughably wrong, as they probably are, this season will be excellent. I'll leave it having hosted my first three tournaments, having edited my first three tournaments, having written my first two tournaments... exciting stuff. Across the nation, everyone will keep on reaching higher heights of accomplishment until Isis Unveiled is an ACF Fall middle part. The future looks bright; see you on the other side.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Sir Thopas » Fri Sep 19, 2008 9:53 am

Man, I'm pumped. I'll just have to try harder to make it out there as a reader for ACF Nationals. And really, it'll be April of my senior year, I'm willing to miss a day of school for it.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by millionwaves » Fri Sep 19, 2008 9:56 am

theMoMA wrote: Illinois still has good players, including that dude named Mike Sorice. Will Turner is back and hopefully will come to many tournaments. Jeff Crean is a very knowledgeable history player, if he decides to play events. Trygve Meade has been writing a ton of questions and is only adding to his already impressive knowledge base. A Sorice-Turner-Crean-Meade lineup is capable of beating anyone in the country in any given game. Players like Greg Baboukis, Steven Canning, and Donald Taylor are all capable of contributing tossups if that lineup doesn't materialize come nats time.
Thanks very much for the kind words. For the sake of accuracy, I suppose I should point out that Steven Canning doesn't play for us or anyone else right now; hopefully, that will change next year.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Magister Ludi » Fri Sep 19, 2008 10:29 am

Here is my guess at the top teams this year.

1- Brown. Obviously they have the one-two punch of Jerry and Eric. But, I think Dennis and Aaron will serve as good compliments to the big two. Dennis is an avid reader and writer, which will lead to success at uper tier tournaments. Aaron is a steadying improving player, who is working to translate his deep music knowledge into a quizbowl context. For this kind of team its better to have a couple of specialists who will lock down on their categories. I expect this team to win ACF Nationals.

2- Chicago. There is not much I can say here that hasn't already been said. With the aarrival of Paul and Shantanu they add to their already impressive depth led by one of the game's greats in Seth. With NAQT specialists and the a potential lineup of Seth/Selene/Paul/Susan for ACF they could easily win both nationals.

3- Illinois. They have Mike Sorice, Jeff Crean, who is a solid history player, and now Will Turner is playing as well. Trygve is the wild card. He reads a lot and is writing lots of questions. If he makes an Ericesque explosion sometime this year Illinois could easily win a national.

4- Minnesota. They've got a great, balanced team that will probably write the most questions of any team this year. With a new lead player they are definitely contenders. I only wonder if they have the star power to get past the three teams above them. Also it seems from playing tham at CO and VCU that higher level history is a weakness.

5- Harvard. This year is going to be a matching game for us. We have one of the deepest teams and will be trying to find the right combinations for different tournaments. With the influx of new freshman like Dallas Simons and the equally impressive Catherine Yang from State College our team will have plenty of lineup options. We have the NAQT specialists in Kyle and Adam to suprise some people, and we have players like Bruce and myself who are dangerous on mACF tournaments. Our biggest weakness is that we don't have a lead player, who can get that pivotal tossup in any category. Personally, I just hope to be ready to play once I come back in the spring. My dad's imposition of three hours of mandatory daily reading has cut into my time to write questions and prepare for quizbowl, but I hope to get back into the swing of things in 2009.

6- Stanford. I don't know much about them except they seem very balanced acros all categories. Their performance last year makes me think they will be a team to watch.

The rest: Dartmouth, Irvine, MIT, Maryland

I will say that MIT is the most underrated team in the country. I think they are one of the top two or three science teams in the country. After playing with Ylaine at ACF Nats and seeing her get every single bio tossup in the second half of that tournament against such competition as Matt Keller, Stanford, and Irvine I think she is a one of the best bio players around. With Chris and Jason taking care of the chem, physics, and math they are really dangerous. The question is: who will get non science questions other than Marc Seifter.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by DumbJaques » Fri Sep 19, 2008 1:14 pm

Maryland won't have Magin, Bentley, or Meigs, but with Chris Ray, who's a incredible player, and Jeremy Eaton, who I'm certain will rise through the ranks, they have the foundation for a decent team.
As we recently discovered, MAQT's own prodigal son Phil Durkos has returned from exile in California and is beginning a 5-year grad program at Maryland; he will outlive us all, and is at least going to play a whole lot this year. Reports indicate he is burdened by this mysterious "knowledge" of which you all seem to speak.
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Re: 08-09 College Quizbowl Prediction Thread

Post by Strongside » Fri Sep 19, 2008 7:09 pm

Here are my predictions with some comments.

1. Chicago

This team is pretty stacked. Plus they add Paul, and Shantanu to an already awesome team, and they won ACF Nats with only 3 players.

2. Brown

Jerry and Eric are really good, and Dennis and Aaron are solid. I don't know if Michael Wright will play, but he is quite good.

3. Illinois

Mike is really good. The more Will Turner and Jeff Crean play, the better I expect them to do. They also have Trygve, Greg, and Donald and it looks like they are getting some frehman.

4. Stanford

They finished in the top bracket at both ICT, and ACF Nats with a strong balanced. Their ranking depends upon how much Andrew Yaphe, and Eric Smith play, but they will be really good regardless.

5. Harvard

Their team is real deep. How they do will depend on who is on their A team, but they will be really good regardless because of their depth.

6. Minnesota

I hope to help. We also have some new players, but it remains to be seen how many tournaments they will go to.

7. Dartmouth

Finished 2nd in the UG division at both ICT and ACF. Strong and deep team, and are similar to Harvard.

8. California-Irvine

Finished high at ICT, and went 5-1 in ACF Nats prelims.

9. Carleton

Garrett Ryan is really good, they won D2 with a team of four freshman, and they are getting Carsten Gehring.

10. Iowa

Paul Drube is really good, and Quentin Roper goes there now, and he is a good science play.

11. Maryland

Chris is really good. They also have Jeremy and Phil Durkos too.

12. MIT

MIT should probably be ranked higher, but I haven't played against their A team, and it's tough to tell who is who if they don't use their real names. I saw Zach Thomas is going there, and he is pretty good.

13. Florida

They did well at ICT. It depends on how much Aaron Kashtan plays.

14. Princeton

Solid balanced team.

15. UCLA

Ray Luo is pretty good.

Also, there are a lot of teams I didn't list because it remains to be seen how active they will be, and how much certain players will play, so this list is not exhaustive. There are several teams that could jump into the top 15 after the season starts.
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