Video from UMBC Final Round 2011

Ashley Novak & Chris Bergman finished second at the University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC) this year after winning the same tournament last year. Their final round case was more of the innovative run at a final round this year, posing a hypothetical opp-choice question about a possible world where love and hate are replaced with mild fondness.

The round was recorded and can be seen here:
[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/37208338 w=400&h=300]

UMBC Final Round 2011: Rutgers vs. American from Storey Clayton on Vimeo.

RUDU 3rd at Byrn Mawr, Yellin Wins First Varsity Outround, Novices Excel

The Rutgers debaters at Bryn Mawr gather with a prize poster at the Harry Potter-themed tournament. Left to right: Elle Amofah, Nisha Kumar, Deepta Janardhan, Henry Phipps, Alex Jubb, Stephen Yellin, Storey Clayton, Kyle Bomeisl, Daimler Vadlamuri, Isaac Woodward, and Asher Wasserman. Half the team also went to NYU this weekend.

The Rutgers University Debate Union (RUDU) continued racking up high finishes for both varsity teams and novice speakers this weekend, maintaining an upward trajectory in the national rankings and especially among the best novice class in the country. RUDU sent teams to both Bryn Mawr College and New York University this weekend, with the former yielding second-year Stephen Yellin’s first varsity break and first varsity break win in the same round.

Here are the official results:

Byrn Mawr 2012
Kyle Bomeisl & Stephen Yellin – 3rd Team
Alex Jubb & Henry Phipps – 9th Team
Kyle Bomeisl – 5th Speaker
Stephen Yellin – 8th Speaker
Alex Jubb – 10th Speaker
Daimler Vadlamuri & Asher Wasserman – 6th Novice Team
Alex Jubb & Henry Phipps – 5th Novice Team
Alex Jubb – 2nd Novice Speaker

NYU 2012
Russell Potter – 5th Novice Speaker

The novice speaker finishes will launch both Jubb and Potter into the top twenty in the Novice of the Year (NOTY) rankings, where they will join fellow RUDUers Quinn Maingi and Kurt Falk, who both remain in the top ten. Rutgers is tied with Yale with seven novices in the standings and has more aggregate NOTY points than any other school, with Brandeis and Yale trailing second and third and no other colleges close.

Bomeisl & Yellin lost a narrow 2-1 decision in semifinals for a chance to final in Yellin’s first break. The duo are forming a new partnership for this semester, Bomeisl’s last on the circuit before he exhausts his APDA eligibility. Bomeisl is RUDU’s only senior in a year brimming with young talent for Rutgers debate.

You can watch Bomeisl & Yellin’s quarterfinal victory over Brandeis here:
[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/36238486 w=400&h=227]

Bryn Mawr Quarters from Richard Weisbach on Vimeo.

This weekend, Rutgers will drive down Route 1 to debate at the first-ever APDA tournament held at The College of New Jersey (TCNJ).

RUDU Finals at Williams, Novak Quals in 2nd Straight Final

An iconic image of the Williams College campus, where RUDU broke two teams this weekend and qualified a third debater for Nationals.

The Rutgers University Debate Union (RUDU) kicked off 2012 with its third final round appearance this season and the second straight for sophomore Ashley Novak. This time, she was paired with hybrid partner Reid Bagwell from Columbia University, with the team winning their first seven rounds before losing a 3-2 decision in finals. Meanwhile, pro-am pair Kyle Bomeisl & Quinn Maingi made quarterfinals as well in the mid-sized but competitive field at Williams College.

Here are the official results from this past weekend:
Ashley Novak & Reid Bagwell [Columbia] – 2nd Team
Kyle Bomeisl & Quinn Maingi – 8th Team
Quinn Maingi – 3rd Novice Speaker
Russell Potter – 4th Novice Speaker

The novice speaker finish puts Maingi back in 3rd place in the Novice of the Year (NOTY) rankings for the season. Kurt Falk remains 5th and Potter is one of seven total RUDU novices in the rankings, now tied with Yale for the most in the league. Novak’s performance, meanwhile, gave her sufficient individual points to qualify for the National Championships in April, to be held this year at Wesleyan University. Novak joins Maingi and Chris Bergman as Rutgers debaters qualified to attend, making this the second most qualifications RUDU has ever had for APDA Nationals, behind the five who were qualified last year. There are still fourteen weeks ahead in which RUDU debaters can compete to tie or eclipse that number of quals, and four more debaters already have points toward qualification.

Videos of Novak & Bagwell’s semifinal and final round have been posted online. You can watch them below:

Semifinals, victory over Brandeis:
[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/34762979 w=400&h=300]

Williams Semis from Denise Yu on Vimeo.

Finals, loss to Yale:
[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/34766222 w=400&h=300]

Untitled from Denise Yu on Vimeo.


Previously unreported on this page, RUDU representatives Bhargavi Sriram, Adam Bomeisl, and Ashley Novak defeated the Trenton Central High School debate team at an enormous public exhibition in Trenton on December 15, 2011. The event was written up in this article in the Times of Trenton.


RUDU will be competing in the next fifteen straight weekends to close out the 2011-2012 season, from next weekend at Dartmouth to Nationals at Wesleyan. Tournament locations are as wide-ranging as Stanford in California, the North American Championships in Toronto, the University of Virginia, and Boston University. If you’d like to get involved with the debate team, our first official meeting of the semester is Tuesday, January 17th. We will hold a demonstration round for new members and provide you all the information you need to get involved!

Summer Showcase Tournament Rounds Now Viewable

Recent Rutgers University Debate Union (RUDU) senior David Reiss and RUDU coach Storey Clayton took part in last month’s summer showcase tournament at Columbia University and recorded all five rounds in which they competed.

The duo took third place overall, losing in semifinals after going 3-1 in in-rounds. Clayton was the top speaker for the tournament and Reiss took sixth, making the team the highest-speaking team in preliminary competition.

Other Rutgers teams competed, with Chris Bergman & Ashley Novak going 2-2 and just dropping a bubble round, while Gordon Morrisette and a hybrid partner also went 2-2 and spoke quite well.

The videos for Reiss’ & Clayton’s rounds can be found below:

[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/26168652 w=400&h=300]

APDA Summer 2011: Round 1 from Storey Clayton on Vimeo.

[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/25720530 w=400&h=300]

APDA Summer 2011: Round 2 from Storey Clayton on Vimeo.

[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/25661312 w=400&h=300]

APDA Summer 2011: Round 3 from Storey Clayton on Vimeo.

[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/25743421 w=400&h=300]

Debate: “Would You Get Rid of Religion?” from David on Vimeo.

[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/26637864 w=400&h=300]

APDA Summer 2011: Semifinals from Storey Clayton on Vimeo.

Presenting Public Forum Resolutions in Parliamentary Style

With the following video, the Rutgers University Debate Union (RUDU) is inaugurating a new tradition as part of its increasing involvement with the Public Forum style of high school debate.

[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/24748645 w=400&h=300]

RUDU PF Resolutions in Parli Style, Debate 1, June 2011 Resolution from Storey Clayton on Vimeo.

This is the first in what is to be a series of Rutgers debaters debating the monthly Public Forum resolution in parliamentary style, the debate format RUDU regularly competes in. Parliamentary style is a longer format that relies on logic and persuasion instead of facts and evidence. While the research necessary for PF will not be included in these rounds, the arc of the argumentation should be invaluable in generating ideas for PF topics.

The first of the series is on the June 2011 (NFL Nationals) resolution, which is Resolved: That the United States should intervene in another nation’s struggle for democracy.

Government (Pro) is represented by Gordon Morrisette and Ashley Novak, while Opposition (Con) is represented by Storey Clayton and David Reiss.

Morrisette, Novak, and Clayton will all be staffing the Scarlet Knight Public Forum Debate Camp in Piscataway, NJ this July and August.

Rutgers, Columbia Revive Centuries-Old Tradition

The eight participants in the 2011 King's/Queen's Debate gather for a post-round embrace. Left to right: (From Columbia) Alex McHale, Ilana Rice, Denise Yu, Reid Bagwell, (From Rutgers) Chris Bergman, Bhargavi Sriram, Kyle Bomeisl, and David Reiss.

The Rutgers University Debate Union (RUDU) met members of the Columbia University Parliamentary Debate Society (CUPDS) last Friday night to revive the colonial tradition of the King’s/Queen’s Debates. The topic was: “This house believes that in liberal democracies, when a law that once made something illegal is repealed, anyone who is in prison for committing that crime when it was illegal should be immediately released.” Columbia (King’s) represented the government and Rutgers (Queen’s) opposed. No winner was declared in the exhibition debate, though RUDU Coach Storey Clayton served as speaker and nominal adjudicator. RUDU was represented by Kyle Bomeisl, Bhargavi Sriram, David Reiss, and Chris Bergman, while CUPDS was represented by Denise Yu, Reid Bagwell, Ilana Rice, and Alex McHale.

The round was recorded for posterity and can be viewed online:
[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/23087460 w=400&h=220]

King’s/Queen’s Debate from Denise Yu on Vimeo.

The King’s/Queen’s Debates were among the first intercollegiate debates ever held in North America, dating back to the pre-Revolutionary War days when Columbia was known as King’s College (founded 1754) and Rutgers was Queen’s College (founded 1766). While there is little documentation available on these debates, it is believed that they persisted until sometime in the 1800’s. The tradition has been dormant for over a century, but this revival is aimed to be the first of many in a new annual event designed to spark interest in both debate societies and increase public discourse on both campuses while bringing historical awareness and perspective to both student bodies.

While attendance was in the double-digits at this year’s event, the hope is that it will grow over time in the future. Columbia will host in odd-numbered years and Rutgers will host in even-numbered years. The 2012 King’s/Queen’s Debate is tentatively scheduled for April 2012 at Rutgers.