NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

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NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by cchiego »

This is the official announcement of the University of Georgia's Southeastern mirror of the NAQT SCT, to be held on Feb. 7th, 2009. We hope to see teams from Tennessee, Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, and North Carolina attend.

ELIGIBILITY: All college players are eligible and there is no packet-submission required. Requirements for DII and undergraduate eligibility are available here: http://naqt.com/college/collegiate-eligibility.html . There will be prizes awarded to the top-finishing DI, DII, and undergrad teams.

FEES:
Base Fee for first Team: $120
Fee for extra Teams: $100
Buzzer Discount: -$5 (max of 2 per school)
Clock Discount: -$5 (max of 2 per school)
Experienced, competent (able to finish at least 20 questions in a timed round and knows NAQT rules well) moderator: -$15 (maximum of 1 for now)
Travel Discount: -$10 for each 200 miles traveled (one-way)
New School Discount: -$40 ("new school" is defined as "a team is from a school that has neither competed in nor hosted a Sectional in the last two years")

CONTACT: If you have any other questions or would like to register for this tournament, please send me an email at [email protected] . I'll post a field update once we start getting a list of interested teams. Since logistics for this tournament are a bit more complex than others, we need to know as soon as possible how many teams, buzzers, clocks, workers, etc. schools are planning on bringing.

LOCATION/TIME: Likely the journalism building, where we usually host, although we might end up having to get two buildings with one being for DII and one for DI. Please let us know if you're coming as soon as possible so we can make arrangements. Registration will be the standard time from 8:30 to 9:00 and play beginning as close to 9:15 as possible. If you are not there by 9:15, play may begin without you.

DIRECTIONS: Athens can be a kind of confusing place to navigate around, so here are instructions for teams once you get on the Perimeter Loop (SR 10) that circles Athens. If you're coming from the West (SR 316) or South (US 129), take the loop to the EAST (right) until you get to the College Station Rd. exit and turn left onto College Station Rd. If you're coming from the North (US 441, from I-85), take the loop to the SOUTHEAST (left) until you get to College Station Rd. and take the exit to the right onto College Station rd. Once on College Station Rd., cross the railroad tracks and take a right onto East Campus Road. Follow East Campus past the stadium and up a hill; just past the crest of the hill, turn left onto Hooper Rd. and then take an immediate right into the parking lot (the gates will be up since it's Saturday). Park here and you have the best access to the center of campus. The large brick building immediately adjacent to the lot is Psychology; keep walking past Psychology (away from East Campus Rd.) and the next big building (which is partially attached to Psychology) is Journalism.

LODGING/FOOD: See http://uga.edu/quizbowl/helpful.php
Last edited by cchiego on Thu Dec 18, 2008 7:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by cchiego »

Field Update (1/7/09):
St. Leo
AUM
Berry
Davidson
North Greenville
Wofford

I suspect we'll get more confirmations when teams show up to ACF Winter, but it's nice to see some formerly CBI-only teams coming.

Also: We should be fine for scorekeepers, but we'd really like to get more experienced moderators, so that's what the discount will apply for. Sorry to have to modify it ex post facto, but scorekeepers aren't too hard to find while experienced moderators are worth their weight in gold.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by cchiego »

We're still taking teams and should have plenty of room at the moment. Here's another field update:
DI (6)
Florida A
Florida B
USC A
Vandy A
Duke
FSU A

DII (14)
GA Tech
USC B
Vandy B
FSU B
Florida C
UGA
St. Leo
AUM
Berry
Davidson A
Davidson B
North Greenville
Wofford
Oxford of Emory
EDIT: More teams have signed up, so anyone who wants to help moderate would be greatly appreciated.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by cchiego »

Here is the final list of schools for our SCT site as I have it. If any teams would like to be added or subtracted, please let me know as soon as possible. Otherwise, I will assume you are/are not coming.

DI (6)
Florida A
Florida B
USC A
Vandy A
Duke
FSU A

DII (12)
USC B
Vandy B
Florida C
UGA
St. Leo
AUM
Berry
Davidson A
Davidson B
North Greenville
Wofford
Oxford of Emory

I also need to know how many buzzers/clocks/moderators etc. teams are bringing to help me figure out the logistics. Please email me or post in this thread if you have final numbers. I will be emailing each team individually as soon as possible to figure out the final cost for that team. I will be sending out a logistics email a few days before the tournament with final reminders to all teams.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by cchiego »

Live Stats:

Not working.

We're on schedule and should be fine after a few blunders committed by myself at the start. Note to future TDs: Be very careful when trying to randomize rooms for a RR.
Last edited by cchiego on Sat Feb 07, 2009 11:47 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by AKKOLADE »

That link doesn't work; it demands a password.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by cchiego »

Scratch that one then, try this:

http://cchiego.myweb.uga.edu/NAQT_standings.html

Edit: DII stats coming soon.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by cchiego »

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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by AKKOLADE »

These links work!
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by cchiego »

Florida A beat FSU in their final match to win the DI sectional. Billy Beyer edged Aaron Kashtan in the prelim matches to win the scoring title.

Full results to follow in just a second.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by cchiego »

Congratulations to the University of Florida A team which won the DI section of the 2009 Southeast SCT. FSU finished second and the University of South Carolina A team finished 3rd. Top individuals were Billy of FSU (78 PPG), Aaron of UF A (76.5 ppg), and Robert of USC A (54 PPG).

I will finish uploading the DI stats when my laptop's power cord is located or a replacement found. For now, stats are correct through the first 8 games at: http://cchiego.myweb.uga.edu/NAQT_standings.html

For now, DII stats are near-complete and can be found at: http://cchiego.myweb.uga.edu/DII_standings.html

We are currently addressing some discrepancies found in the DII stats. Please feel free to email me if you have questions.

I want to personally thank Seth Kendall for driving in from Lawrenceville to moderate as well as fellow DI readers Eric Douglass and Bryn Reincke, who all helped us get through 13 DI rounds so quickly. I know there were some complaints about the readers in DII, but we attempted to address them whenever possible and hope that by building up a crop of freshmen readers this year we'll have a larger pool to pull from in future years. Also, I want to recognize the former CBI-only teams like St. Leo and Davidson for turning out. Davidson's DII teams finished 3rd and 4th and look like they have excellent potential for the future, so a tip of the hat to them. Duke also made its first appearance at an SCT in a long time, so congrats to them as well.

Thanks to all the teams who came. This is the last tournament that I will be running and I intend to leave the world of quizbowl administration now to pursue my career as a full-time player and writer for the remainder of my undergrad year and for (hopefully) my graduate years.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by Aaron Kashtan »

Thanks to Chris and the UGA team for running an enjoyable tournament.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by wd4gdz »

Good job Tim. That 29.35.1 stat line is quite impressive. It is clear you did a lot of studying in those two weeks after Penn Bowl, where you went 1.11.9 and averaged 7ppg. I hope everyone else is inspired by this, and sees how easy it is to improve as a player. All one has to do is read packets...and obviously I am referring to old packets, and not the packets that are going to be used at a tournament.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by wd4gdz »

UGA, as usual, ran a great tournament. I have no idea how Div2 went, but Div1 had great readers, and I appreciate them coming and helping out. Anyone who has to put up with Aaron Kasthan making multiple protests in a single half and screaming I HATE NAQT after a mere three questions in Round 1 deserves my admiration.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by vandyhawk »

wd4gdz wrote:Good job Tim. That 29.35.1 stat line is quite impressive. It is clear you did a lot of studying in those two weeks after Penn Bowl, where you went 1.11.9 and averaged 7ppg. I hope everyone else is inspired by this, and sees how easy it is to improve as a player. All one has to do is read packets...and obviously I am referring to old packets, and not the packets that are going to be used at a tournament.
I know Billy has made some comments like this before that seemingly didn't pan out, but wow - this might actually be deserving of a response by Chris or someone from UGA (assuming this Tim is indeed the same person at both events and not a different Tim...). Granted, some people are better at NAQT than (m)ACF, but that much better? It's not like the field at Penn Bowl was that strong, and teammates don't seem to be a valid explanation either. It's rather odd how their only loss has him at 0/0/0 too.

On other notes, congrats to the Vandy B team for their strong showing without one of their 3 regular guys. Also, I'm sad I didn't get my yearly dose of Kashtan outbursts...
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by cchiego »

Here is what I know:

Tim Boughey, Treasurer of the UGA Quizbowl team, has access to our Gmail account where the questions for the SCT were sent to. I anticipated this since I knew Tim was playingand asked him to make sure that he didn't look at the questions. He said no problem. However, I needed someone with access to the UGA team account to pay for the $200+ job of copying all the questions, scoresheets, surveys, etc., so I talked to Tim and he said that he would give the team credit card to his girlfriend, who has served us well as a moderator and player in the past, who would keep the questions themselves secure from him. We have no reason to doubt that she actually did so, but there was a 12 hour period in which the questions would have been available on our team email account to any of the officers.

I admit that I made a mistake in entrusting a member of a team who was playing such access to these questions. In retrospect, I should have had the questions sent to my private email account, obtained the team credit card myself, and made copies on my own. However, I had no reason to doubt that our team Treasurer, who we entrust our teamaccount to, would willingly and systematically look at the questions and I specifically talked to him beforehand to make sure that he realized that he could not look at the questions in any way, shape, or form and that he was to leave handling the printing and copying of questions to someone else. I believe that the printing and copying instructions were followed, but I cannot speak for the access that he had to them while they were in the team email account.

I first noticed around round 4 that Tim was doing spectacularly well at the tournament, which was unusual because he had historically averaged between 5 and 15 PPG. Indeed, he was averaging more powers per game than excellent players like Charlie Dees were at other sites and, most notably, almost no negs. Also suspicious was that his teammates, despite also having studied for the tournament, were averaging about what they usually did. Finally, UGA's PPB was significantly lower than the other teams. I asked Tim about his performance and he said that he had been studying NAQT lead-ins for awhile. In an effort to see what would happen, I changed round 6 to packet 16 and worked our way backward from there. After round 6 (in which he actually went 3-1, not 0-0-0, that's a stat mistake), the other UGA officers who were not playing (and were working in the building where the DII matches were going on) confronted Tim and asked to see his notebook, which checked out clean with nothing incriminating in there. Tim insisted that he had not cheated. Afterwards, Tim's stats dropped noticeably from 85 PPG to his 65 PPG and his number of powers declined as well. I considered calling NAQT and asking for a fresh packet from previous years to place in a round with UGA, but as that would have delayed the tournament significantly I decided against it. UGA ended up winning the DII section.

There is no way for me to confirm my suspicions fully. The only way I envision that would help determine if cheating occurred or not would be to read Tim packets from other DII SCTs (07 or 05, since the UGA team has 06 and 08 and Tim had access to those questions like all our members do to study) and seeing whether or not the same Power and Neg numbers occur. I do not speak for the UGA Quizbowl team (I am no longer an officer and was merely a TD for this tournament), but I hope something like that will happen in order to either exonerate Tim or strongly imply that he looked at the questions for the 09 SCT in advance. If he would like to offer his side of the story he may do so publicly, he is certainly welcome to do so. Today I was in communication with the other UGA Quizbowl officers discussing the matter when the story broke on the IRC, so I hope that by posting here now the rest of the quizbowl world will note that we are trying to be as forthcoming as possible.

Please feel free to call, email, or post here if you have any questions for me. (901) 289-1606 or cchiego at gmail dot com.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by Jeremy Gibbs Paradox »

OK while I respect the fact that Georgia is not trying to close ranks and is being very forthcoming with all the information on this subject, the idea of this sort of "challenge" using an old set really proves nothing. For one thing you cannot replicate the field without having everyone present again and some of those people aren't clean on those q's. IF there was cheating involved (And why do people even contemplate this? Has no one ever seen Starter For Ten???), it needs to be dealt with in an even handed, fair way for the accused, NAQT and whomever would have been denied a bid. Deciding it on a trial by ordeal or a trial by internet is not productive.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by cchiego »

I'm using Chris's account since I cannot seem to login to my account at the moment.
Tim Boughey, Treasurer of the UGA Quizbowl team, has access to our Gmail account where the questions for the SCT were sent to. I anticipated this since I knew Tim was playingand asked him to make sure that he didn't look at the questions. He said no problem. However, I needed someone with access to the UGA team account to pay for the $200+ job of copying all the questions, scoresheets, surveys, etc., so I talked to Tim and he said that he would give the team credit card to his girlfriend, who has served us well as a moderator and player in the past, who would keep the questions themselves secure from him. We have no reason to doubt that she actually did so, but there was a 12 hour period in which the questions would have been available on our team email account to any of the officers.
Yes, I did have access to the UGA Quiz Bowl Team's GMail account. However, I can also truthfully say that I did not use that account to access the questions in order to gain an advantage over UGVA's opponents at the NAQT SE Sectionals. Chris notified me that he received questions at 3pm on Friday afternoon. As instructed, those questions were downloaded onto a zip drive by a trusted member of our quiz bowl team and along with NAQT Rules, Scoresheets and receipts for the tournament. Immediately, the zip drive was taken to Kinkos, where an order was placed to have copies made for the next morning. The copies would not be ready until 8am Saturday morning, and would be boxed, along with everything else, prior to tournament usage. I have possession, within the quiz bowl checkbook of receipts showing when the order was placed and when it was picked up the next
morning. CHRIS himself, can vouch for the fact that no paper copies were tampered with prior to the tournament.

All I can say about the time period between the night before and the morning of the tournament, is that I did not utilize the gmail account as a means of cheating for the tournament. I spent the evening before the tournament studying for NAQT and doing things other than cheating.
I first noticed around round 4 that Tim was doing spectacularly well at the tournament, which was unusual because he had historically averaged between 5 and 15 PPG. Indeed, he was averaging more powers per game than excellent players like Charlie Dees were at other sites and, most notably, almost no negs. Also suspicious was that his teammates, despite also having studied for the tournament, were averaging about what they usually did. Finally, UGA's PPB was significantly lower than the other teams. I asked Tim about his performance and he said that he had been studying NAQT lead-ins for awhile. In an effort to see what would happen, I changed round 6 to packet 16 and worked our way backward from there. After round 6 (in which he actually went 3-1, not 0-0-0, that's a stat mistake), the other UGA officers who were not playing (and were working in the building where the DII matches were going on) confronted Tim and asked to see his notebook, which checked out clean with nothing incriminating in there. Tim insisted that he had not cheated. Afterwards, Tim's stats dropped noticeably from 85 PPG to his 65 PPG and his number of powers declined as well. I considered calling NAQT and asking for a fresh packet from previous years to place in a round with UGA, but as that would have delayed the tournament significantly I decided against it. UGA ended up winning the DII section.

There is no way for me to confirm my suspicions fully. The only way I envision that would help determine if cheating occurred or not would be to read Tim packets from other DII SCTs (07 or 05, since the UGA team has 06 and 08 and Tim had access to those questions like all our members do to study) and seeing whether or not the same Power and Neg numbers occur. I do not speak for the UGA Quizbowl team (I am no longer an officer and was merely a TD for this tournament), but I hope something like that will happen in order to either exonerate Tim or strongly imply that he looked at the questions for the 09 SCT in advance. If he would like to offer his side of the story he may do so publicly, he is certainly welcome to do so. Today I was in communication with the other UGA Quizbowl officers discussing the matter when the story broke on the IRC, so I hope that by posting here now the rest of the quizbowl world will note that we are trying to be as forthcoming as possible.
I would like to mention the manner in which the topic of cheating was actually handled during the DII Sectionals.

1. I was never confronted by Chris Chiego about cheating. As Tournament Director, he could have brought this problem to an end onsite by simply speaking to me and my fellow teammates. Instead, he, or Steven, the director in Caldwell Hall (the tournament was held in two buildings), had me brought up into his room before the first round against Vandy B. During that time I was informed that my notebook needed to be checked and that Chris suspected me of cheating. Nothing was found in my notebook to suggest that I had any answers on me at the tournament. I then asked to speak directly to Chris, or to have the issue resolved at that moment, but was told that Chris would/could not talk to me; and, that Steven had nothing else to say or do during the meeting. I even tried to confront and confer with Chris before the results were announced to the group were even officially announced. I was once again not even given an actual reason for suspicion, or disqualified, or a chance to speak. Again, I cannot begin to reiterate that I wanted this problem resolved and the chance to defend myself, onsite, before anything happened after the fact.

2. There is absolutely no way that I could have memorized, used, or gained that many answers in the period between Friday night and Saturday morning. I spent my evening out and went to bed only to wake up in time to show up at the tournament, and spend the hour or so before it started on the phone with the UGA Police trying to get the doors opened to Sanford and Caldwell Hall.

3. I doubt there will be anything I can actually do to exonerate myself or prove that I did not cheat. But, I did not cheat at this year's sectionals. I followed instructions about how to pay for copies and didn't utilize our team account to do anything but what I was told. There is no way, time wise for me to have reviewed the questions in order to gain an advantage over the rest of the field. It's obvious that I didn't spend the hours from 3pm-8am studying the questions because I was doing other things. I have mentioned this to Chris, and I can document with receipts, for clocks and questions, that I was not around the questions, in any form, during this time period.

4. Vandy B beat the UGA team fair and square during one of the rounds. Against most teams we competed in competitive matches that could have gone either way.

Lastly, you should direct all inquiries to Chris, since he is the tournament director. Ultimately, it's his decision to choose to act in whatever way he sees fit. Chris will be in contact with teams and NAQT about the tournament leading to a resolution. My teammates support me fully in my proclamation that I am not guilty of cheating during this year's tournament.
Last edited by cchiego on Mon Feb 09, 2009 7:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by cchiego »

(This is Chris again)

I have nothing to add other than to note that I was trying to run a quizbowl tournament that day and hoped that the other UGA Quizbowl officers could handle the situation after I notified them of my suspicions. I received information from other teams that suspected something was amiss to go with the suspicious stats. The fact that I did not personally confront a suspected cheater (and in doing so derelict my duties to the tournament) should mean nothing.

I believe the evidence speaks for itself. I remain confident that this was an act of one indiviudal and should not reflect on the entire team.

NAQT has been notified; I personally apologized to Greg Gauthier of Vanderbilt B for this mess happening after he called; again, please talk to me about this if you have any questions.
Last edited by cchiego on Sun Feb 08, 2009 11:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by vandyhawk »

So, given that all of this guy's teammates at UGA seem to think he cheated, these responses are operating on the premise that he really did.
not really uga_chris wrote: Nothing was found in my notebook to suggest that I had any answers on me at the tournament.
Well, I certainly hope that someone cheating wouldn't be so brazen as to write down answers...
not really uga_chris wrote:2. There is absolutely no way that I could have memorized, used, or gained that many answers in the period between Friday night and Saturday morning.
It's not like you had to memorize everything. You seem to have answered between 4-8 tossups per round. It seems easy enough to just associate some leadins with answers you're familiar with. Plus, you seem to have either failed to remember more, or tried to make it not too obvious by limiting how many you answered, which also failed.
not really uga_chris wrote:3. I doubt there will be anything I can actually do to exonerate myself or prove that I did not cheat.
True.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by gregpweinstein »

Also, against Berry College (my team) he had 6 powers with 13 questions answered by his team but no bonus points. I am not sure if this is a stat error, but I honestly can not remember any bonus questions being answered.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by Paul150 »

As a teammate of Tim's during the tournament, I'd like to take a moment to stand up for him and address the issue at hand as I saw it. I was not with him during the night leading up to the tournament, and have no way to absolutely verify the truth to Tim's account of not accessing the questions on the quizbowl officer email. However, having known Tim for about the last two years, I can say this is not something I see him capable of doing. The notebook in question contained a small amount of creative writing of Tim's, scores he kept during the matches, and notes he took as the matches progressed. I'll reiterate that since I occupied the seat next to Tim in almost every match, I can verify that he wrote in these notes as the matches progressed and that these pages were not filled in at all previously. As far as I know, Tim brought the notebook in question to the TD for the DII tournament, and the content was approved as being clean and not giving Tim any sort of unfair advantage to the match.

I'll also say that Tim was making very impressive buzzes on DII ICT questions in the weeks leading up to the tournament in practice, and as I recall, he negged very few times during these practices. This is coupled with the fact that he had many old NAQT questions to study over the summer, as qualifying our DII team for ICT has been a goal for the last two years, especially since I captained our DII team to a heartbreakingly near qualification last year. Planning the team for NAQT has been something Tim and I have been doing since the end of last year's NAQT sectionals. So it makes sense that Tim, wanting to qualify as much as I did, studied NAQT a lot.

Now, it is a known fact that NAQT loves to use similar leadins for questions in future tournaments. I can say that I powered a question that was almost exactly verbatim as another question from either '08 or '07 NAQT sectionals. I say that NAQT recycles these questions because I powered the same question in whichever previous tournament it occurred ('07 or '08). As I was answering the question, I immediately thought of the similarities between it and the other NAQT SCT question I had heard. I also noticed similarities between other questions this year and questions I had heard in previous NAQT tournaments. This evidence suggests that diligent study of old packets will prepare you well for NAQT tournaments, especially DII sectionals. I would also like to point out the almost impossible task of memorizing the information Tim answered in the short time frame he could have accessed the questions.

Another factor in Tim's favor is the fact that the subject areas he was answering were areas he has knowledge, such as history, mythology, art, trash and lit. I can also vouch for the fact that Tim has recently taken several history courses that covered topics he answered, as he was in the same class with me for one last semester, and we frequently discussed the other history classes he was taking at the same time. It is also noteworthy that (since I am mostly a history person as well) several times during the tournament, Tim and I were engaged in buzzer races for questions that he more frequently won, including several tossups that became powers. Because Tim has better buzzer reflexes than I do, he ended up beating me to several questions we both had knowledge of (and unlike Tim, I had no way to access these questions beforehand).

In regards to the low amount of negging -- It's not impossible to go through a tournament without negging. At ACF Fall, I did not neg until the eighteenth question of the final round, though I posted a respectable PPG for a well-rounded four person team. While I was not putting up the same PPG as Tim this tournament, it has happened that some people have very low negs per tournament. In addition, I don't like how fairly low bonus conversion is suddenly equated to the top scorer cheating. I felt that as is often the case, the bonuses this tournament ranged wildly in difficulty. Occasionally, according to the stats Chris has posted, our PPB by round ranges from 0 against in one round to 20.00 in another (assuming there is not anything wrong in the scoring in these regards). I think the swing suggests that there were some occasions where we got bonuses we knew, while other times, we got unlucky with the bonus distribution. Another thing to point out is that all-around, DII bonus conversion was fairly low. I think using our bonus conversion as evidence against Tim is not fair to him.

I am also extremely disappointed in how this was handled at the tournament. We had the round after lunch start very late. Afterwards, Tim was missing between rounds. He came to me, asked me to take captain duties, and explained that a coach from another team had complained about Tim's use of his notebook (which was declared to be clean). Never once until I talked with Chris after the tournament (in fact, I had to ask Chris what was going on with Tim to get any information about the story) did I hear any sort of accusation of cheating besides the story I mentioned above. Tim was distraught and irritated for much of the rest of the day, and this affected his play. All we had to deal with for the rest of the day were rumors and speculation from people on our team instead of receiving any notification from Chris or anybody else.

I have seen players meltdown after a reasonable neg in a match and be considerably thrown off of their game; I assume it's reasonable that being accused of cheating in a match you have been preparing for for a year would throw off your game some as well. Tim still performed well, as well as my stats increasing after lunch (using available stats it was 22.14 PPG after lunch vs. 10 PPG before lunch; Muneeb and Cindy's PPG also rose after lunch as well). An increase in productivity from other members of the team combined with the distress Tim exhibited after the allegations were made are contributing factors in the reduction of Tim's stats after lunch (when the allegations were made).

It disheartens me that the allegations were made; it disheartens me even more that a good stat line is the only evidence against Tim in this case. Again, I can't guarantee that Tim did not look at the electronic packets, but having known him for as long as I have and knowing what he puts into the team, I think cheating is against his character and makes no sense whatsoever, as UGA's top-level DII team has been one of the better NAQT DII teams over since I joined. I'm sorry if things got long-winded or tangential above, but I hope things are resolved in a fair way.
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Basileus 2.0

Post by Maxwell Sniffingwell »

Paul150 wrote:Afterwards, Tim was missing between rounds.
Why?
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by Important Bird Area »

Paul150 wrote:Now, it is a known fact that NAQT loves to use similar leadins for questions in future tournaments. I can say that I powered a question that was almost exactly verbatim as another question from either '08 or '07 NAQT sectionals. I say that NAQT recycles these questions because I powered the same question in whichever previous tournament it occurred ('07 or '08). As I was answering the question, I immediately thought of the similarities between it and the other NAQT SCT question I had heard. I also noticed similarities between other questions this year and questions I had heard in previous NAQT tournaments. This evidence suggests that diligent study of old packets will prepare you well for NAQT tournaments, especially DII sectionals.
I don't have anything to say about the cheating allegations, but I would like to respond to this.

Please send me the details, either in private email (jthoppes {at} berkeley {dot} edu) or by posting in the password-protected SCT discussion forum.

I would like to state in no uncertain terms that NAQT does not recycle questions verbatim from previous tournaments.

It is possible that individual questions may repeat the same or similar facts as in previous tournaments; obviously this situation is less than ideal, but to a certain extent it is unavoidable, given that we have more than 200,000 questions in our database representing more than a decade's worth of quizbowl.

That being said, at the level of collegiate play it is my ideal as a subject editor that every single tossup contain a leadin that is "new" in the sense that it rewards academic knowledge in preference to study of old NAQT packets. My apologies if the history in the 2009 SCT (or any other recent NAQT tournament) fell short of that standard.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by Maxwell Sniffingwell »

Paul150 wrote:In regards to the low amount of negging -- It's not impossible to go through a tournament without negging. At ACF Fall, I did not neg until the eighteenth question of the final round, though I posted a respectable PPG for a well-rounded four person team. While I was not putting up the same PPG as Tim this tournament, it has happened that some people have very low negs per tournament.
29-35-1?

It's not the lack of negging that makes people suspicious, it's the lack of negging plus the high amount of powers.

Subash Maddipoti, the beneficiary of the biggest old-NAQT-packet studying spree ever, went 74-95-29 at ICT 2003 and 33-66-7 at ICT 2000.


Twenty-nine powers is more than any team at the Carleton site; at WUStL, Charlie Dees and Shantanu Jha, who are arguably the two best freshmen in the country, went 31-148-26 (nice, Charlie) and 43-75-19 respectively.

In other words, two of the better novices in the country had power-to-neg ratios of 1.19 and 2.26. Doug Yetman also broke 29 powers, but with a 0.74 P/N.


Tim's power-to-neg ratio was TWENTY-NINE.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by Down and out in Quintana Roo »

Before we discuss too much more, a thorough re-checking of all scoresheets involving UGA needs to be done. It doesn't make any sense for a team that averaged about 14 PPB for every game to have one game with exactly 0 in addition. Extremely hard to believe.

That already leads me to think that there may/must be scoring discrepancies in some fashion. So before we can make any more firm accusations, those scoresheets have to be checked again and confirmed.

But needless to say, a 29:1 P:N ratio is pretty... unbelievable.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-TN) »

Also, the stuff about NAQT packet recycling clues seems more like a complaint out of 2002. For my money, NAQT has done a decent job (and continued with this set) of stemming this problem and making it a lot harder for that researching leadins kind of frauding to benefit in such a short period of time.
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Re: Basileus 2.0

Post by Paul150 »

cornfused wrote:
Paul150 wrote:Afterwards, Tim was missing between rounds.
Why?
This is when he was asked to show his notebook to the DII TD (DI and DII were in different buildings and run separately). We didn't know at the time; he just was missing between rounds. When he came back, he was upset, asked me to take captaining duties, and said that our DII TD wanted to see his notebook because there was a complaint.

RE Green Warbler: Perhaps I misphrased myself there. While the one question I powered seemed a lot like one I powered either last year or the year before, I meant to say that overall a lot of the questions had what seem to be stock lead-ins and that studying these as in-depth as I am led to believe by talking with Tim would only help him out. And the one that I powered seemed to have the same leadin clues, but if I recall correctly, it was distinct from the previous edition. Overall, I enjoyed the history questions and thought they were well-written. Apologies if the previous comment implied otherwise.

RE Cornfused (again) and : Sectionals are also considerably easier than the ICT questions. And Tim isn't a freshman either; our main DII team is fairly old for a DII team. And if the scoring issues are ever worked out and it's discovered that Tim negged more than once, the ratio drops a lot as well. I don't know exactly what the scoring issues are, but in DII, we had many inexperienced readers/scorekeepers. I recall often having to ask if a question was powered and the reader taking a long time to acknowledge the status of an answer being a power. And I don't have a perfect memory, but I thought that Tim negged more than once on the day and that we didn't have a round with zero bonus total. I'm hoping the anomalies lie in scorekeeping errors.
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Re: Basileus 2.0

Post by Important Bird Area »

Paul150 wrote:Overall, I enjoyed the history questions and thought they were well-written.
Glad to hear it.
Paul150 wrote:overall a lot of the questions had what seem to be stock lead-ins
This isn't nearly as bad as verbatim recycling, but it's still a big problem. I would welcome cited examples in either of the secure forums I mentioned above.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by Paul150 »

I just sent an email to you about the question I mentioned.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by Aaron Kashtan »

..............

User was banned for one week due to editing out his post.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by grapesmoker »

Not that I can comment on the proceedings of a tournament in another region that featured players I do not know, but I'm a grizzled veteran with a few insights into the matter.

1) It is very unlikely for a player to improve from 10-15 PPG to 60+ PPG between successive tournaments, especially when two out of three teammates are the same. In the only instance of collegiate cheating that I am aware of, which involved Cam from Harvey Mudd and occurred in 2002 (I think), the jump from previous tournaments to the tournament in which the cheating was alleged to have taken place was equally large. Players just do not improve like that out of nowhere. It should be noted that in the Cam case, as in this one, the situation involved a player having access to questions through a tournament director, and just as in that situation, various people claimed that the cheating could not have taken place because the accused was a boy scout, blah blah blah. After that incident, I find the statistical evidence far more damning than anything else.

2) It is supremely unlikely to be aggressive enough to power 29 tossups and yet neg only once. Observe the statlines of some of the best DI players from this last tournament. Mike Sorice, Brendan Byrne, and I all had P/N ratios of between 1 and 2. Eric Mukherjee, who negs much less often than I do, was just above the 2.6 mark. No way do I believe that Tim, whoever he is and however good he might be (especially noting point 1 above), is beating Eric in P/N. That's just completely implausible.

3) UGA had a lower bonus conversion than the next 4 teams. This is telling because people who cheat typically just memorize leadins and tossups, which is much easier to do than learning all the bonus answers. A winning team should have a PPB that is either the best or close to being the best in their field. Just observing the statistics from the other sites shows this to be a reliable heuristic. For a winning team to finish 5th in PPB is not necessarily problematic in and of itself, but combined with points 1 and 2 above is quite suspicious.

4) As a grizzled old veteran, I can tell you that I saw very few things in this set that you could have gotten just by reading old NAQT packets. That could once have been true; it no longer is. I've played enough SCTs to know what's up, and I guarantee you that you did not learn all those leadins by reading old NAQT questions because they weren't there. If you somehow learned them in another way, then that would show up in your stats at other tournaments, but as per point 1, it did not. Suspicious.

5) The putative defense offered by Tim himself is that he couldn't have possibly memorized all those leadins. But then, how could you have possibly learned all those clues from other sources, and yet still not have it show up in the stats for any other tournament? There is an incongruity here that cannot be explained by pleading a special exception for NAQT questions, because as per point 4, that exception no longer applies.

The sum total of the information that I'm seeing revealed here indicates a serious problem to me. It's hard for me to say anything specific about this incident that isn't reflected in the numbers, but in my experience, these numbers are highly anomalous. Taken as a whole, they are a solid indicator of cheating; if Tim did not actually cheat, then he certainly needs to explain these coincidences in a coherent way that makes sense, and he hasn't done that.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-TN) »

5) The putative defense offered by Tim himself is that he couldn't have possibly memorized all those leadins. But then, how could you have possibly learned all those clues from other sources, and yet still not have it show up in the stats for any other tournament? There is an incongruity here that cannot be explained by pleading a special exception for NAQT questions, because as per point 4, that exception no longer applies.
Yeah, I don't remember if I brought this up before, but I just want to point out that in this case, it's pretty obvious that Tim didn't memorize all those leadins since he didn't power everything. I have never cheated at quizbowl, but to me, this seems like a much more reasonable way to cheat - try and remember the things that you can remember, and then just kind of browse over everything else. This method of focusing on a few of the questions per packet seems to also fit in much better with this statline.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by Matt Weiner »

This is me speaking as a board administrator.

Trying people over the Internet by means of arguing about their numbers is a futile exercise. I don't think it's an appropriate subject for the board. I was one of many people who was asked last night by some members of the Georgia team for an opinion on what they should do about his. My response was that the members of the Georgia team who both have some credibility with the outside quizbowl community and know Tim from practices, etc, should make a good-faith evaluation of whether it's plausible for him to have performed as he did at Sectionals. If the answer is "no," all games in which he played must be forfeited and he must be removed from the team. If the answer is "yes," then the matter must be closed and no more attempts to "prove" cheating should continue, as they can result in nothing productive.

There is no way to prove that anyone did or did not cheat just by looking at their stats; arguing about it on a message board or having some asinine "challenge game" are even worse ideas. The Georgia team leadership knows what happened here and is obligated to tell us. If Tim cheated, expel him from the club and forfeit these games. If he didn't cheat, say so, remind the board that no one outside of the Georgia team has any useful knowledge of the situation, and tell everyone to shut the fuck up about it henceforth. That's all there is to it.

I don't want anyone else posting about this topic except a Georgia team officer telling us which of the above two courses is being pursued.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by kmaster »

Matt Weiner wrote: Trying people over the Internet by means of arguing about their numbers is a futile exercise. I don't think it's an appropriate subject for the board. I was one of many people who was asked last night by some members of the Georgia team for an opinion on what they should do about his. My response was that the members of the Georgia team who both have some credibility with the outside quizbowl community and know Tim from practices, etc, should make a good-faith evaluation of whether it's plausible for him to have performed as he did at Sectionals. If the answer is "no," all games in which he played must be forfeited and he must be removed from the team. If the answer is "yes," then the matter must be closed and no more attempts to "prove" cheating should continue, as they can result in nothing productive.

Agreed. This whole discussion seems to be a classic case of this:
http://xkcd.com/386/
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by AKKOLADE »

Matt is correct - a public discussion of this will not resolve the issue or lead to a determination of guilt or innocence. The onus is on, as Matt stated, Georgia's leadership to determine what happened. Of course, one would expect NAQT to investigate as this whole situation affects their system of qualification and could help them control such problems in the future.

One can only hope that the Georgia team does the right thing and launch a proper investigation into this situation.

With that being said:
kmaster wrote:Agreed. This whole discussion seems to be a classic case of this:
http://xkcd.com/386/
This is not a classic case of "being wrong on the Internet" or whatever. Cheating at quiz bowl is a very serious issue, the ethical implications of which can taint a program for years. A discussion of it should not be dismissed as "just another Internet argument."
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by AKKOLADE »

Aaron Kashtan wrote:..............
Hey, just in case anyone forgot, you're not allowed to edit out your posts.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by cchiego »

Since having correct stats is of the utmost importance in this situation, I went back and re-checked every scoresheet with the data that had been initially entered. There were a few errors in the initial entering of the DII stats, largely concerning not giving players enough TUs or recording subtotals as final scores in a few cases (I did not enter the DII stats initially). The largest beneficiary is Davidson B, whose coach correctly pointed out that the stats had been entered incorrectly for two of their games.

I have no reason to believe that there was anything wrong with the stats themselves as recorded on the scoresheets. The scorekeepers were members of the UGA team and recorded powers, negs, etc. in what appears to be a normal and consistent manner. Therefore I have submitted these stats as official to NAQT and apologize for the delay in getting them out- I just spent 3 hours re-entering on another computer them since my laptop is still out of commission.

Final DI Stats: http://cchiego.myweb.uga.edu/NAQT_standings.html

Final DII Stats: http://cchiego.myweb.uga.edu/DII_standings.html
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by kmaster »

FredMorlan wrote: With that being said:
kmaster wrote:Agreed. This whole discussion seems to be a classic case of this:
http://xkcd.com/386/
This is not a classic case of "being wrong on the Internet" or whatever. Cheating at quiz bowl is a very serious issue, the ethical implications of which can taint a program for years. A discussion of it should not be dismissed as "just another Internet argument."
I did not mean by my link to that webcomic that the issue at hand was not both a very serious issue and one with real-world implications. If that is the aura my post gave off, I apologize. I simply meant to point out the futility of those not involved in the situation commenting on it. The UGA team is well aware of the full implications of both the situation which may be at hand and how it chooses to deal with that situation. Making judgement calls from across teh interwebs only serves to rile up multiple parties and does not allow any productivity.

Again, I apologize if my intentions in posting that had been misinterpreted.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by Down and out in Quintana Roo »

So Tim went from 29.35.1 to 34.36.1.

Thanks for looking at the stats and correcting them where they needed to be. Hopefully this rectifies things.
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Re: NAQT SCT Southeast @ UGA (2/7/09)

Post by Matt Weiner »

Posting about how much you're not posting about this is still posting about this.
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