A file photo of Gordon Morrisette, looking contemplative. Group photos will return when Ashley remembers to use her camera, or when we get tired of close-ups on individual debate team members.

The Dartmouth tournament this past weekend wasn’t the best ever for the Rutgers University Debate Union (RUDU), but some of that was by design. Most regular partnerships split up so that varsity members qualified for Nationals could pair with less experienced novices and help prepare them for the coming semester of competition. While some of these pairs came close to the break, it was the dynamic novice duo of Gordon Morrisette and Ashley Novak that came the closest.

Here’s what RUDU got on the board this weekend:
Gordon Morrisette & Ashley Novak – 3rd Novice Team
Gordon Morrisette – 2nd Novice Speaker
Ashley Novak – 7th Novice Speaker

It was a breakout weekend for Gordon, who has collected top-five novice speaking finishes in both tournaments so far this semester, suddenly rising to 13th in the Novice of the Year (NOTY) standings. Meanwhile, Rutgers as a whole maintained its historically high placement in the College of the Year (COTY) standings, as can be seen here.

Northern travel will continue for RUDU this coming weekend, as the January New England trifecta closes with a trip to Bates College in Lewiston, Maine. This tournament will largely be a tune-up for the 2011 North American Championships, to be held in January’s last weekend in New York City.

If you’ve been following the successes of the Rutgers debate team and want to be a part of it, don’t be shy! Meetings are Tuesdays and Thursdays at 9:00 PM in Scott Hall 115. We have plenty of space for new members and will be conducting a rigorous training regimen for those who join early this semester. We hope to see you there!