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MLK 2008

Posted: Mon Nov 26, 2007 10:16 pm
by alkrav112
Hey all -

I've been getting a lot of interest about MLK, and I'm sorry I haven't been able to post an announcement yet. That said, I should have a full announcement up by Wednesday night. Most of the rumors floating around are completely true: it will be a mirror of TIT, it will take place, as usual, MLK weekend, and Ann B. Davis will occur as always the Sunday following. The forthcoming announcement will be posted in this thread.


Posted: Wed Nov 28, 2007 11:23 pm
by alkrav112
What's up quiz bowlers?

Michigan Academic Competitions is pleased to announce our annual Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Tournament, taking place on Saturday January 19 2008, the Saturday immediately before Martin Luther King Day. The tournament will be a mirror of Maryland’s TIT XXII (, edited by Jonathan Magin.

Also, here is a shameless plug for the 13th Ann B. Davis: A Barker’s Dozen pop culture tournament, to take place the following day (Sunday, January 20 2008)! Everyone should go! Links to relevant info are here:
and here:


Questions about logistics, registration and all things not packet-related should be addressed to Tournament Director Andy Kravis ( Questions about packets, distributions, and the like should be addressed to someone at Maryland, presumably Mike Bentley (I will edit this if such a thing is untrue) at, because he'll be more likely to answer your questions about such things.

PRICING (copied from TIT, with minor adjustments):

+$100 - Base Fee
-$50 - Packet submitted by Saturday, November 24th.
-$25 - Packet submitted by Saturday, December 8th.
+$0 - Packet submitted by Saturday, December 22nd.
+$50 - Packet submitted by Saturday, December 29th.
+$100 - No packet submitted.
-$5 - Buzzer discount per school.
-$10 - Competent moderator discount per school
-$20 - Travel discount per team for coming more than 200 miles one way as judged by Google Maps.
+$10 - Formatting penalty for formatting your questions incorrectly (see formatting section below).
-$20 - Prize for the best unedited packet received in general, and by the best Division II (first two years play quizbowl) only team.

Minimum Fee Per Team: $40.

PACKET GUIDELINES (Copied from TIT, again with minor locational adjustments):

Please send a copy of your packet to me, Andy Kravis, at (, and I will check it for formatting issues and forward it to the appropriate people.

Distribution (26/26):
5/5 History (1/1 US, 1/1 European, 1/1 Ancient, 1/1 World, 1/1 Your Choice [please do not write both of these on the same subject])
5/5 Literature (1/1 American, 1/1 British, 1/1 European, 1/1 World, and 1/1 Any of the above; try to include at least 1/1 drama, 1/1 novels, and 1/1 poetry)
5/5 Science (1/1 Physics, 1/1 Chemistry, 1/1 Biology, 1/1 Minor Science like Computer Science, Non-Computational Math, Geology, Astronomy, Earth Science, Engineering, etc., 1/1 Your Choice)
1/1 Extra History, Literature, Science (please do not write on the same category for both the tossup and bonus)
3/3 RMP (2/2 Religion and Mythology, 1/1 Philosophy)
3/3 Fine Arts (1/1 Visual Fine Arts like Painting and Sculpture, 1/1 Classical Music, 1/1 Your Choice or other like Architecture, Artistic Film, Dance, Opera or more painting / music.)
2/2 Social Science (Economics, Sociology, Psychology, Anthropology, Linguistics, etc.)
2/2 Your choice (any additional questions above), pop culture, common link, general knowledge, current events, misc.

Please vary all your questions by time period, region of the world (when applicable) and genre. Also vary the type of question you ask. For example, do not write 5 literature tossups on 19th century British novelists. A better literature selection would include tossups on authors, works and characters, on American, British, and World literature, and on fiction, drama, and poetry.

Difficulty (Copied from TIT):

Please keep your tossups between ACF Fall and ACF Regionals level difficulty (or, at about the difficulty level of last year's Penn Bowl). When in question, err on the easier side. It is not a good idea to explore canon expansion (i.e. writing about things that have never come up at tournaments before) in most of your tossups.

Every bonus should have a clear easy, medium and hard part. Almost every team in the tournament should be converting the easy part of the bonus, while a little more than half of the teams should be converting the medium part. The hard part of a bonus should be able to be answered by those with in-depth knowledge in the field, or approximately one quarter of the teams.

Question Length (Copied from TIT):

All of the following lengths apply to documents written in Word with 1 inch margins (change these from the default), and a 10 point Times New Roman font.

Final tossups will be between 5.5 and 7.5 lines long. However, we'd prefer that you submit tossups on the long side (or even over the 7.5 line limit), since it's always easier for us to get rid of clues that we don't like than to add additional clues by ourselves.

Bonus parts should be kept within reason. Do not write extremely lengthy leadins or bonus parts (try to keep them under 2 lines). Also do not write extremely short bonuses or list bonuses, as these are typically not very interesting. The vast majority of your bonuses should be 10-10-10. Please do not write any 30-20-10 bonuses, and avoid bonuses with more than four answer parts. Do not write any 5-10-15 bonuses, since making a single part worth half the bonus is less fair than having three parts worth the same amount of points.

Formatting (Copied from TIT):

Please format your questions in the following matter:

1/1 Unfunny Meta Example Questions:

The person involved in this event is starting a rumor that it was actually a planned occurrence to get himself mentioned in a meta question in Matt Weiner's canceled Chicago Open trash tournament. Immediately after this event occurred, one person was unable to identify Okazaki Fragments. It was preceded by Jeremy Eaton answering a tossup on time dilation. The person responsible for this event blamed not getting enough sleep the night before and the two hour drive to Richmond, but most of all just plain not paying attention. Occurring in a game against South Carolina at the 2007 VCU Open, it is now immortalized in the YTMND page Nude Descending a Gas Chamber. FTP, identify this action wherein Mike Bentley erroneously answered "The Armory Show" for "Auschwitz".
ANSWER: Worst Buzz (also accept Nude Descending a Gas Chamber before mentioned, Mike Bentley's Embarrassing Neg with The Armory Show on the Auschwitz Question at the 2007 Illinois Novice Tournament, and clear knowledge equivalents; do not accept just "Armory Show" or "Auschwitz")

Answer the following about a certain comic strip, FTPE.
[10] Like Chris Ray, the title character of this Dik Browne comic strip has red hair and a big beard, and is also illiterate and bathes only once a year.
ANSWER: Hagar the Horrible
[10] Using Wikipedia might erroneously lead you to believe that Hagar the Horrible was based on this play by Henrik Ibsen in which Sigurd defeats Hjördis by killing her sentinel, a white bear.
ANSWER: The Vikings at Helgeland
[10] If Jonathan Magin had his way, Hagar the Horrible and all other comic strips would be inspired by this Robert Louis Stevenson novel about some Scottish dude and his buried treasure.
ANSWER: The Master of Ballantrae

DO NOT USE ANY AUTOMATIC WORD FORMATTING EXCEPT FOR SMART QUOTES. Specifically, do not use any indentation or automatic numbering in your packets. Submit all packets in .doc or .rtf format please.

If questions are not correctly formatted (at the discretion of the editors), your packet will be returned for you to reformat. If you submit your packet at the deadline and it is rejected for formatting issues, you will be charged a $10 formatting fee (and asked to reformat the packet), but you will not have to pay any additional fees for missing the deadline.

Misc (Copied from TIT):

As with all packet submission tournaments, questions must be blind to all other teams attending the tournament. Specifically, if a school is sending more than one team to the tournament, members of different teams should not know of each others' questions.

Please do not plagiarize questions. Do not copy direct passages and phrases from the sources you use to write questions. Additionally, do not write questions directly out of Wikipedia. While Wikipedia can be a useful source in finding preliminary information on a question, we encourage you to use more in-depth, scholarly and peer reviewed sources when writing your questions. Please see various question writing guides such as Jerry's guide for more information on where to find good sources for writing questions.

TO REGISTER: Send me, Andy Kravis, an e-mail ( with all pertinent information (number of teams, members of teams, buzzers, other applicable discounts, anything else I should know), and I will send a confirmation e-mail back to insure that the registration info is all in order.

Regarding payment: We want your money before you play. Checks should be made out to Michigan Academic Competitions and they can either be mailed to me (e-mail me for address info) before the tournament, or you can pay the morning of the tournament. I will make sure you know how much you owe when you e-mail me to register, pending packet discounts/fees, which I will keep track of.

Teams that have less experience writing questions may want to consult the
Michigan Memorandum on question writing, available on the web at:

Along with its appendix:


If you're wondering how to get to Ann Arbor and where to stay once you get there, some general suggestions can be found at:

And, as previously stated, you can always e-mail me ( with questions.

We look forward to seeing you in January!

- Andy

Posted: Tue Dec 18, 2007 4:24 pm
by alkrav112
Field Update:

Chicago (4)
Illinois (3)
Notre Dame (2)
Chris Ray et. al. (1)
BGSU (1)
House teams as necessary

So right now we have 11 teams for sure. Get to regist'rin' and packetin'.

Posted: Tue Dec 18, 2007 6:10 pm
by DumbJaques
This tournament will mark Pat Freeburn's triumphant return to quizbowl dominance, as I ride his coattails to another trip to MLK's second playoff bracket.

Posted: Tue Dec 18, 2007 7:00 pm
by vandyhawk
DumbJaques wrote:This tournament will mark Pat Freeburn's triumphant return to quizbowl dominance, as I ride his coattails to another trip to MLK's second playoff bracket.
So this begs the question, why are you ditching your own tournament to go to Michigan?

Posted: Wed Dec 19, 2007 12:09 am
by DumbJaques
So this begs the question, why are you ditching your own tournament to go to Michigan?
I am going to be in Illinois that weekend anyway, plans that were set before it was even decided that MLK would be a TIT mirror (when I did this last year, it wasn't). It's not as if I'm leaving Maryland to fly out to Michigan. If MLK is a TIT mirror next year, I obviously won't be going to Michigan.

Posted: Wed Dec 19, 2007 12:34 pm
by BobGHHS
Chris, will you be playing at ABD as well?

Posted: Sun Dec 23, 2007 2:40 am
by alkrav112
See the updated field above - also, I have decided to adopt the updated fee structure from TIT ($25 penalty on the 29th; $50 penalty on the 6th).

Posted: Sun Dec 23, 2007 5:05 am
by Auks Ran Ova
Minnesota should be sending at least one team, and that team's packet was submitted long ago.

Posted: Sun Dec 23, 2007 5:48 am
by Skepticism and Animal Feed
Myself and Rom Masrour should be coming, hopefully with teammates. Packet is in the works.

Posted: Sun Dec 23, 2007 2:26 pm
by alkrav112
I would appreciate it if all teams playing MLK would register with me by e-mail at, as described above. I had no idea a Minnesota team was coming. Thanks.

Posted: Thu Dec 27, 2007 11:53 pm
by Skepticism and Animal Feed
To follow up on my last post: Rom has confirmed that we are in need of two additional teammates. If anyone out there still needs an MLK team, please let one of us know ASAP.

Posted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 12:02 am
by Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-TN)
Is there any cheap flight from Kansas City to Michigan then?

Posted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 12:28 am
by Skepticism and Animal Feed
Deesy Does It wrote:Is there any cheap flight from Kansas City to Michigan then?
If you can find a cheap flight from KC to Chicago, Rom and I could probably drive you to Michigan for free.

Posted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 1:03 am
by The Time Keeper
I believe Team Chris Ray (Chris Ray, Rebecca Fischer, and noted idiot Pat Freeburn) still needs another player, although Chris can correct me if I'm wrong. Contact Chris or myself if you're interested in joining the magic.

Posted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 3:44 am
by Jeremy Gibbs Lemma
chuq, if you go there, i am not sure we would really have a tournament at rolla unless more people sign up pretty quickly :-(

Posted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 3:56 am
by Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-TN)
I'm frankly not very sure there's going to be a tournament at Rolla whether I go or not unless people sign up soon.

Posted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 2:22 pm
by DumbJaques
Team Chris Ray
Please correct to Team Freeburn

Posted: Sun Dec 30, 2007 9:15 pm
by alkrav112
Field Update:

Chicago (4)
Illinois (3)
Notre Dame (2)
Chris Ray et. al. (1)
BGSU (1)
Minnesota (2)
Lafer, Westbrook, and friends (1)
Bruce, Rom, and friends (1)
Pitt (1)
House teams as necessary

So far, we have 16 teams for sure, and several teams are looking for free agents. Let me know if you're interested in coming but don't have a team, and I'll hook you up.

*Edit 1: Field Update (1/7/08)

Posted: Mon Dec 31, 2007 10:02 pm
by Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-TN)
I got my tickets, so unless someone else can convince me to join their team with an offer that rivals the one I got for a lifetime supply of Flavor Blasted Pizza Goldfish I will be a 3rd on the Bruce/Rom collective, and I've heard that Ray Sun will be the 4th player. See you all there!

Posted: Mon Dec 31, 2007 10:07 pm
by Leo Wolpert
ray sun great player or GREATEST PLAYA


Posted: Tue Jan 01, 2008 12:10 am
by Ray

Posted: Tue Jan 01, 2008 12:18 am
by setht
Time to find some other tournament for that weekend, preferably one using an A-level set.

Posted: Tue Jan 01, 2008 12:23 am
by theMoMA
I heard rumors that Ray Sun was going to Minnesota for law school...t/f

Posted: Tue Jan 01, 2008 1:20 am
by AuguryMarch
I will own Ray Sun like my ancestors owned the shtetl

Posted: Tue Jan 01, 2008 1:39 am
by Ray
i had to go on wikipedia to find out what that means but that doesnt change the fact that YOUR GOING DOWN PAUL

Posted: Tue Jan 01, 2008 9:10 pm
by AuguryMarch
Ray wrote:i had to go on wikipedia to find out what that means but that doesnt change the fact that YOUR GOING DOWN PAUL

Posted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 7:04 pm
by DumbJaques
Here be field updates?

Posted: Wed Jan 16, 2008 10:58 pm
by alkrav112
Final Field:

Chicago (4)
Illinois (3)
Notre Dame (2)
Chris Ray et. al. (1)
BGSU (1)
Minnesota (2)
Lafer, Westbrook, and friends (1)
Bruce, Rom, and friends (1)
Pitt (1)
Carnegie-Mellon (1)
Michigan House Team (1)

Which gives us 18 teams, good enough for two brackets of 9 teams. During bye rounds, teams will staff. Be prepared.

I'll send out an e-mail sometime tonight with more details; in the meantime, if you have a laptop and can bring it, let me know, as we may need them. From there, we'll figure out the wireless capability of this tournament.

- Andy

Posted: Thu Jan 17, 2008 5:18 am
by alkrav112
Hi all -

MLK 2008 is fast approaching, so here's what you need to know for this Saturday:

Registration will begin at 8:30 am in 3314 Mason Hall (staff should arrive around the same time unless I've specifically told you otherwise). The team meeting will begin at 9:00 am or as near to it as possible (no later than 9:15). Rounds will begin at 9:30 am, and the morning rounds will consist of the 18 registered teams divided into two 9-team brackets, each team playing a full round-robin within its own bracket. Teams on their bye rounds should plan to staff (which means do not leave early for lunch, please). The playoffs will be divided into brackets of 4, 4, 4, 3, and 3, from top to bottom, and any teams from the bottom bracket will be welcome to scrimmage each other during the extra playoff rounds.

Hopefully each team will be bringing some sort of payment (preferably monetary). Checks should be made out to "Michigan Academic Competitions," and invoices will gladly be provided to any team that requests one.

If you have a laptop that we can use for the whole day, please notify me ASAP and, as of right now, plan to bring it with you. There will be a $10 discount per working laptop, assuming we end up needing them.

If you have questions or comments, feel free to e-mail them to, and I'll address them as soon as I can.

Looking forward to a wonderful tournament - see you all Saturday!
- Andy

Posted: Sat Jan 19, 2008 10:37 pm
by alkrav112
Quick results:

1) Chicago Goning to Take a Trip (Teitler and friends)
2) UIUC A (Sorice and friends)
3) Lafer/Westbrook
4) Minnesota A

Thanks to all for coming; more stuff will be posted later. Hope to see many of you tomorrow for ABD!

Posted: Tue Jan 22, 2008 6:00 pm
by Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-TN)
Andy (and everyone out there who has limited webspace or whatever), if you're having trouble uploading the stats, you can use this program to quickly upload the SQBS stats pages for public viewing.

Posted: Tue Jan 22, 2008 10:54 pm
by Quantum Mushroom Billiard Hat
Thanks for the link. That seems to have worked very well.

I think this should work for results. ... =standings

Posted: Tue Jan 22, 2008 10:55 pm
by alkrav112
Thanks to Mr. Dees and Michael H. for expediting the posting of MLK stats: ... =standings

At the end of nine rounds, Chicago Goning to Take a Trip and Minnesota A were the top 2 seeds in the Free Bracket, and UIUC A and Lafer/Westbrook were the top 2 seeds in the Last Bracket. Chicago defeated Lafer/Westbrook, and UIUC A defeated Minnesota A to go to the finals. The final round of playoff stats got lost in the shuffle, but Chicago Goning to Take a Trip were the winners of that match and, subsequently, the tournament.

Again, thanks to all who staffed, and thanks to all the teams for showing up, staffing during bye rounds, and being patient throughout the day.

Posted: Tue Jan 22, 2008 10:57 pm
by alkrav112
Another note about stats: During Round 10, individual stats were not kept in the Pat Freeburn v. UIUC B game, and so "TEAM" reflects the team's stats in that game.