Louisiana 2016-2017

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Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by sgoebel » Sun Mar 19, 2017 11:26 pm

There have been some pretty significant changes in Quiz Bowl in Louisiana this year. The LAAC (and its format) is pretty much gone, and almost all of the major tournaments have been run using NAQT questions. More schools seem to be participating in pyramidal quiz bowl, and hopefully this trend will only continue. I'm also hopeful that as more schools participate, the level of competition will rise in the state as well. Currently, three schools are ranked in the hsqbrank standings: St. Martin's Episcopal (147), Episcopal School of Acadiana (167), and Jesuit (187). Three schools are currently registered for HSNCT and another three are registered for SSNCT - also an improvement over previous years.

The new state quiz bowl organization, the Louisiana Quiz Bowl Association, is hosting the state championship tournament on March 25th, and 28 schools have registered. In the previous two years, only 6 schools sent teams to the championship tournament that used NAQT questions.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by Father Comstock » Mon Mar 20, 2017 12:34 pm

Please figure out how to kick the NAC out of New Orleans.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by An Economic Ignoramus » Mon Mar 20, 2017 12:59 pm

Father Comstock wrote:Please figure out how to kick the only real national tournament out of New Orleans.
ftfy
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by Father Comstock » Mon Mar 20, 2017 1:30 pm

JakobeanEra wrote:
Father Comstock wrote:Please figure out how to kick the only real national tournament out of New Orleans.
ftfy
I will most likely distribute some pyramidal questions at NAC as well as some study materials. I hate that we're going but oh well :roll: Next year my goal is to get Indiana completely off of NAC, though a lot of teams are scared of pyramidal so it will be difficult. We actually had our only real state tourney yesterday and there were repeats within the packet. :lol:
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by sgoebel » Mon Mar 20, 2017 1:46 pm

Father Comstock wrote:Please figure out how to kick the NAC out of New Orleans.
Strangely enough, I've only recently heard about NAC at all. I don't know, off hand, of any schools in the northern half of the state that participate. I think schools in the New Orleans area participate only because there is no traveling required. I played quiz bowl in the state from 2001-2005 and don't remember ever hearing about NAC. The only national format we played (that I remember) was NAQT (mostly traveling out of state to do so).
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by El Salvadoreno » Mon Mar 20, 2017 3:11 pm

Father Comstock wrote:
JakobeanEra wrote:
Father Comstock wrote:Please figure out how to kick the only real national tournament out of New Orleans.
ftfy
I will most likely distribute some pyramidal questions at NAC as well as some study materials
I got to say this strategic gem has been overlooked. If you pass out pyramids at NAC you upset :chip:. Upsetting :chip: makes you persona non grata at NAC. This will make your school unable to go to NAC ever again. Genius!
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by Father Comstock » Mon Mar 20, 2017 3:27 pm

El Salvadoreno wrote:
Father Comstock wrote:
JakobeanEra wrote:
Father Comstock wrote:Please figure out how to kick the only real national tournament out of New Orleans.
ftfy
I will most likely distribute some pyramidal questions at NAC as well as some study materials
I got to say this strategic gem has been overlooked. If you pass out pyramids at NAC you upset :chip:. Upsetting :chip: makes you persona non grata at NAC. This will make your school unable to go to NAC ever again. Genius!

We've won twice in the last 8 years and I'm pretty sure Chip and my coach must have some sort of deal where we get stuff cheap. But yes I plan on distributing some SCOP Novice or equal caliber of packet in NOLA... if anyone has any ideas of what else to share with NAC teams, let me know.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by An Economic Ignoramus » Mon Mar 20, 2017 6:08 pm

Father Comstock wrote:
El Salvadoreno wrote:
Father Comstock wrote:
JakobeanEra wrote:
Father Comstock wrote:Please figure out how to kick the only real national tournament out of New Orleans.
ftfy
I will most likely distribute some pyramidal questions at NAC as well as some study materials
I got to say this strategic gem has been overlooked. If you pass out pyramids at NAC you upset :chip:. Upsetting :chip: makes you persona non grata at NAC. This will make your school unable to go to NAC ever again. Genius!

We've won twice in the last 8 years and I'm pretty sure Chip and my coach must have some sort of deal where we get stuff cheap. But yes I plan on distributing some SCOP Novice or equal caliber of packet in NOLA... if anyone has any ideas of what else to share with NAC teams, let me know.
Old CO questions.
Also, sorry to any Louisiana folks who are not happy about having their thread hijacked by a bunch of midwesterners talking about chip bowl.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by El Salvadoreno » Mon Mar 20, 2017 6:34 pm

Father Comstock wrote:
El Salvadoreno wrote:
Father Comstock wrote:
JakobeanEra wrote:
Father Comstock wrote:Please figure out how to kick the only real national tournament out of New Orleans.
ftfy
I will most likely distribute some pyramidal questions at NAC as well as some study materials
I got to say this strategic gem has been overlooked. If you pass out pyramids at NAC you upset :chip:. Upsetting :chip: makes you persona non grata at NAC. This will make your school unable to go to NAC ever again. Genius!

We've won twice in the last 8 years and I'm pretty sure Chip and my coach must have some sort of deal where we get stuff cheap. But yes I plan on distributing some SCOP Novice or equal caliber of packet in NOLA... if anyone has any ideas of what else to share with NAC teams, let me know.
I might go with an a-set, since I believe they are shorter than SCOP novice, yet still pyramidal, which might ease the transition. (That being said, there is obviously not a problem with giving out SCOP, its just a suggestion that might make things easier).
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by jonah » Mon Mar 20, 2017 6:45 pm

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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by The Ununtiable Twine » Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:07 pm

sgoebel wrote:More schools seem to be participating in pyramidal quiz bowl, and hopefully this trend will only continue.
Good quizbowl has been trending upward in Louisiana since the early 2000s. It took a while to get off its feet, but Louisiana has had somewhat healthy good quizbowl participation for quite some time now, and thankfully the participation has improved quite a bit in recent years. This is more or less the product of the good work of quite a few people...
sgoebel wrote: The new state quiz bowl organization, the Louisiana Quiz Bowl Association
...quite a few people who have been organizing and staffing good quizbowl tournaments in the state for well over a decade now which now call themselves the Louisiana Quiz Bowl Alliance. The Louisiana Quiz Bowl Association is not the new state quizbowl organization. The Louisiana Quiz Bowl Alliance consists of people who have committed their time and effort (some for well over a decade) towards the development of good quizbowl in Louisiana. It has been around for quite some time in some form or another, even if it has only officially called itself an organization in recent years. It should also be noted that none of the universities (who host quite a few events) currently have membership in the Association. If the Association wants to be seen as legitimate going forward this needs to change now. The four major hosting universities (UL Lafayette, LSU, Tulane, and LA Tech) all have membership in the Alliance.

As I have been directing quizbowl tournaments in Louisiana for well over a decade now, I can tell you that the major factor in NAQT State actually getting more schools to participate this year is because it's the only game in town. For years, most teams considered the LAAC State championship (played on bad quizbowl questions) to be the *real* state championship of Louisiana, and so they would send their teams to that tournament. Now that the LAAC State championship is no more, teams are flocking to NAQT State because it's the only game in town. The overwhelming majority of the rise in participation at NAQT State can be attributed to this, although I'm sure your recruiting methods have been more or less successful. As a three-time director of NAQT State (the only nationally recognized Louisiana state championship), I have to say I'm very pleased with the developments with regards to the number of participating schools.
Last edited by The Ununtiable Twine on Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:16 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by jonah » Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:11 pm

The Ununtiable Twine wrote:...quite a few people who have been organizing and staffing good quizbowl tournaments in the state for well over a decade now which now call themselves the Louisiana Quiz Bowl Alliance. The Louisiana Quiz Bowl Association is not the new state quizbowl organization. The Louisiana Quiz Bowl Alliance consists of people who have committed their time and effort (some for well over a decade) towards the development of good quizbowl in Louisiana. It has been around for quite some time in some form or another, even if it has only officially called itself an organization in recent years.
As an outside observer, I would love for someone (or perhaps several people) to explain what on earth is going on with the existence of these two seemingly rivalrous organizations with very similar names.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by An Economic Ignoramus » Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:19 pm

jonah wrote:
The Ununtiable Twine wrote:...quite a few people who have been organizing and staffing good quizbowl tournaments in the state for well over a decade now which now call themselves the Louisiana Quiz Bowl Alliance. The Louisiana Quiz Bowl Association is not the new state quizbowl organization. The Louisiana Quiz Bowl Alliance consists of people who have committed their time and effort (some for well over a decade) towards the development of good quizbowl in Louisiana. It has been around for quite some time in some form or another, even if it has only officially called itself an organization in recent years.
As an outside observer, I would love for someone (or perhaps several people) to explain what on earth is going on with the existence of these two seemingly rivalrous organizations with very similar names.
As an outside observer, this is turning into a top tier regional discussion thread.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by Father Comstock » Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:25 am

I will take this link as a complete NAQT endorsement of distributing pyramids at :chip: bowl. :lol:
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by sgoebel » Tue Mar 21, 2017 11:13 am

jonah wrote:
The Ununtiable Twine wrote:...quite a few people who have been organizing and staffing good quizbowl tournaments in the state for well over a decade now which now call themselves the Louisiana Quiz Bowl Alliance. The Louisiana Quiz Bowl Association is not the new state quizbowl organization. The Louisiana Quiz Bowl Alliance consists of people who have committed their time and effort (some for well over a decade) towards the development of good quizbowl in Louisiana. It has been around for quite some time in some form or another, even if it has only officially called itself an organization in recent years.
As an outside observer, I would love for someone (or perhaps several people) to explain what on earth is going on with the existence of these two seemingly rivalrous organizations with very similar names.
Ashley Dugas (president of the LQBA) has discussed it with Chad Kubicek. I don't think this is the appropriate venue for this sort of discussion.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by jonah » Tue Mar 21, 2017 11:25 am

Father Comstock wrote:
I will take this link as a complete NAQT endorsement of distributing pyramids at :chip: bowl. :lol:
It is nothing more or less than "here is one place you can find sample pyramidal questions that are clear for distribution, and also the only place you can find NAQT questions that are permitted to be distributed."
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by Father Comstock » Tue Mar 21, 2017 11:58 am

jonah wrote:
Father Comstock wrote:
I will take this link as a complete NAQT endorsement of distributing pyramids at :chip: bowl. :lol:
It is nothing more or less than "here is one place you can find sample pyramidal questions that are clear for distribution, and also the only place you can find NAQT questions that are permitted to be distributed."
Thanks for the clearing up. I was weary of distributing the samples in case that could get NAQT in legal trouble. So I am okay to distribute the samples on the site?
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by jonah » Tue Mar 21, 2017 12:04 pm

Those samples are available as samples to anyone. If you choose to distribute them, that's your business and NAQT has nothing to do with it.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by The Ununtiable Twine » Wed Mar 22, 2017 12:42 am

sgoebel wrote:
jonah wrote:
The Ununtiable Twine wrote:...quite a few people who have been organizing and staffing good quizbowl tournaments in the state for well over a decade now which now call themselves the Louisiana Quiz Bowl Alliance. The Louisiana Quiz Bowl Association is not the new state quizbowl organization. The Louisiana Quiz Bowl Alliance consists of people who have committed their time and effort (some for well over a decade) towards the development of good quizbowl in Louisiana. It has been around for quite some time in some form or another, even if it has only officially called itself an organization in recent years.
As an outside observer, I would love for someone (or perhaps several people) to explain what on earth is going on with the existence of these two seemingly rivalrous organizations with very similar names.
Ashley Dugas (president of the LQBA) has discussed it with Chad Kubicek. I don't think this is the appropriate venue for this sort of discussion.
I will kindly remind you that this is the main venue for quizbowl discussion. This is the sort of thing we discuss here and so we shall discuss it.

A good month and a half ago, this message was sent to the members of the Association withdrawing our support for the state championship:
Kris Meche wrote: Mrs. Dugas, Mr. Ebarb, and all other concerned parties,

LSU will no longer be hosting the Louisiana Quiz Bowl Association's state tournament on March 25th nor providing manpower.
There have been quite a few flags raised since the December meeting on the direction the Association wishes to proceed in for the state of Louisiana. I have spoken with other collegiate actors on the matter and the Colleges - Tulane, ULL, LSU, LaTech - are all in agreement we cannot support the current direction.

Therefore, we have all agreed to join the Louisiana Quiz Bowl Alliance in promoting good Quiz Bowl throughout Louisiana. We cannot allow antiquated aspects of Quiz Bowl to prohibit Louisiana Quiz Bowl from flourishing.
We, the universities and long-time organizers of good quizbowl in Louisiana (again, known as the Alliance) unanimously withdrew our support from their event. Now what sorts of things might these "antiquated aspects" consist of, you might ask? The learned quizbowl forum reader will recognize the following red flags (noting that there are almost certainly others that are not listed here):

1. A very passionate defense of single-elimination tournaments and a lack of understanding that rebracketing is a superior quizbowl practice. [It is crucial that any organization that wants to be in charge of good quizbowl in a state at least understands superior practices. I am well aware that it may be advantageous for tournaments to use single elimination practices in order to qualify more teams for HSNCT. However, a rudimentary understanding of quizbowl theory should be a bare minimum for any state quizbowl organization.]

2. Failure to understand that computational tossups, although officially usable (especially in NAQT), do not capture the essence of pyramidal quizbowl. [See #1, this is just another example.]

3. An insistence on using hand-written worksheet rounds in the state championship. [The NAQT State Championship has always used 20/20 format.] As this is a "transition year" in Louisiana quizbowl, the worksheets are apparently a gimmick that is being used to attract teams that prefer bad quizbowl to participate in the tournament. Otherwise there is no legitimate reason to use this reverse transition.

4. Initial insistence on not taking individual stats for the state championship. The Association's stance has apparently changed with respect to this issue. A good thing too, this is 2017! The idea that "taking individual statistics at a quizbowl tournament is a lot of work" is antiquated and doesn't really hold up well. It literally takes five minutes to teach someone how to fill out a score sheet. Sometimes I literally teach staff how to take a quizbowl score the day before a tournament, and on rare occasions if the week before the tournament didn't go exactly as planned, the morning of. The fact that some of the Association's current officers held this view in December 2016 should raise a flag.

5. A public declaration at the Great Louisiana Quizbowl Conclave of December 2016 (the meeting between what are now known as the Alliance and Association) by Mark Ebarb, a current member of the Louisiana Quiz Bowl Association, that the LAAC State Championship was the definitive state championship of Louisiana and therefore an insistence that I had personally hosted exactly zero official state championships (even though I have hosted the only nationally recognized state championship in Louisiana three times, as has my colleague Kevin Marshall). Certainly this ruffles my feathers in a not-so-good way, but more importantly the fact that no one from what is now the Association argued against this talking point should give the reader an idea that this sort of thought process is still the norm in parts of Louisiana, and more troublingly it exists rather prominently within the Association.

6. When I personally volunteered to direct the NAQT State Championship at LSU (I have directed the state championship for the past two years), the idea was shot down by members of the current Association - it's almost like they had orchestrated a plan to shoot the idea down in advance or something. As my good record shows, there is no legitimate reason to immediately reject me when I volunteer to run your quizbowl tournament. Perhaps you decide on someone else to run the tournament (JR Barry is certainly capable of doing a fine job), but flat out ignoring someone of my experience level who has volunteered to run your state tournament raises a red flag.

7. Unfortunately, it has come to my attention recently that the Louisiana Quiz Bowl Association has officially invited more teams to the state tournament than the tournament's volunteers can currently possibly handle. As an experienced tournament director, I can confirm that this is not a good quizbowl practice. If this is incorrect as of when this post is read, feel free to correct me in this thread.

8. The fact that every major quizbowl organizer in the state outside of Kevin Marshall was not invited to become part of the Louisiana Quiz Bowl Association should raise a red flag.

9. The fact that I woke up one recent morning to a facebook message from a former teammate (and close associate of the Association's president) stating that the Louisiana Quiz Bowl Alliance was being brainwashed from afar by a nefarious business-oriented outside influence should raise a red flag. We are an independent coalition whose members come to their own conclusions. (To clarify, we are not like TQBA in structure. Whereas TQBA uses a more central governing model, the member organizations of the Alliance have more or less decided to remain independent for the foreseeable future as this is the model we have used within good quizbowl in Louisiana for well over a decade. The fact that there was no "Louisiana Quiz Bowl Alliance" or "Louisiana Quiz Bowl Association" or "Gulf Coast Quiz Bowl Association" before the 2010s should be evidence enough of this. We have existed for a very long time but are only recently "organized".) What is now known as the Louisiana Quiz Bowl Alliance is not some suddenly contrived coalition of daemonic influence come to take over quizbowl in the state of Louisiana. We are, in fact, the people who started good quizbowl in Louisiana and continue to run most of the good quizbowl tournaments in Louisiana. The above email states that we unanimously pulled our support from the Association's efforts because several red flags have been (and continue to be) raised. Again, we are not the manipulatable Tikis from Donkey Kong Country Returns. Browse these forums and see who these people who has run the majority of good quizbowl tournaments in Louisiana are. Not a difficult exercise.

10. Any failure to acknowledge that LAAC, Louisiana's now-defunct bad quizbowl organization, has stymied good quizbowl's progress in Louisiana for more than a decade despite repeated efforts to help them transition to good quizbowl (and has consequently had a negative effect on attendance at NAQT State) is a red flag. Any failure to acknowledge that the NAQT State Championship's growth has been hindered mainly by LAAC's insistence on bad quizbowl is a red flag. The year is 2017.

Indeed, the fact that an Association affiliate has suggested that this forum is not the place to discuss quizbowl happening should also raise a serious red flag that the Association has little to no idea how good quizbowl works. The very idea that we are some sort of rogue organization designed to fight the Association is ludicrous at best.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by Joshua Rutsky » Wed Mar 22, 2017 10:09 am

Two clarifications to what Jake has posted. I am adding this only because I spent considerable time recently trying to bridge the gap between these two organizations, because IMHO having two organizations fighting it out in a state for control is hardly optimal:

1) I cannot comment on the prior state of QB in Louisiana, and I don't have any reason to dispute what Jake has said about the types of tournaments run or the quality of questions. However, as he noted, this relatively new organization has agreed to base itself on pyramidal question usage, with intent to run NAQT question-based tourneys. I have been told by the Association that the Alliance has declared plans to pre-book as many of the NAQT sets as possible at the start of the season to try to "lock them out" of this format and thus destroy them. Again, I have no verification of that from the Alliance, but the head of the Alliance, who according to the website is Chris Romero, the current leader of TQBA, told me in conversation that, in his opinion, there was no point in trying to bridge the gap between these organizations, and that scorching the earth was the most effective method to rebuild LA quizbowl as a quality product. To that end, I am given to understand that the college players associations in LA have agreed not to support events run by the Association. I don't have a problem with that per se, but as Jake said, this led to the LSU team withdrawing not only its support for the LA State Championship event this year, one that was set to be held on NAQT questions, but doing so well after they had agreed to host the event, and thus leaving the tournament without staff OR A VIABLE HOST SITE as of one month before the event. Whatever your issues with an organization or the approach they are taking, if you make a commitment to help host a state championship, you follow through and then pull out your support AFTER that event. LSU made the commitment to host, and they should have followed through with it; given the extensive history of bad things that Jake cites in his post, I cannot see how one can argue that LSU didn't know who or what they were going to be working with, and therefore had the right to bail based on a sudden awareness of ethical conflict.

2) As it was explained to me by both the Association AND the Alliance, the problem with the state tournament came down to a question of whether the Alliance was confident that the tournament would be run properly. At one point, according to sources from both groups, the Alliance contacted the Association and offered to not only run and host the NAQT State Championship, but also to FUND the championship completely, making it free for all schools to attend. In exchange for this, the Alliance insisted that a particular person be made the Tournament Director and event coordinator. The Association had already offered a contract to another person, JR Barry, to do this, and he had accepted. They felt it would be unprofessional and inappropriate to break that contract, and so they offered to have the Association member work with Barry as an Assistant Director, an offer that was refused. Again, I personally called the chief parties to this conflict and asked them if there was any way that they could get past this difference. After extensive discussion with both of them, it was my opinion that the two groups were both on the same basic page, and that the sticking point was simply the TD issue. The Allilance was unwilling to accept anything but total control of the event as a condition for agreement, and no agreement was reached.


After talking to these parties, here's what I can say:

1) I personally believe that the major difference here is a difference in approach to how quiz bowl is best developed in a community. The Alliance, which is made up of college players and a few coaches and others, is primarily an organization with the intent of promulgating the best possible form of quizbowl (in their opinion, of course) to players, and believe that the best way to do that is to eliminate "bad quizbowl" in all forms, leaving the good form as the only game in town. The theory is that if the circuit suddenly loses a number of teams that were hooked on "bad quizbowl", that's life, but over time, since there will only be one form of quizbowl available to play, a better, stronger circuit will develop in its place.

The Association, on the other hand, is largely driven by HS faculty sponsors and staffers. They are, by the very nature of their career choice and training, inherently "pro-inclusion" in academic opportunity, and quiz bowl is an academic opportunity. It is their belief that having students play on better questions is a better thing, but that transitioning schools from weaker forms of quiz bowl to stronger ones is something that can be done in steps. Going over to NAQT questions is a big step, one that they took this year. As Jake points out, they still use worksheets, but as a coach in a state that still uses worksheets as part of our state format, I don't see that as the worst thing in the world PROVIDED THE WORKSHEETS ARE PROPERLY WRITTEN. Worksheets that are evenly distributed across subject material will not substantially affect stronger teams, who will score consistently high on them. However, they DO offer the chance for very weak teams on the buzzer to actually score a few points in a match, and avoid the total demoralization of a 650 to -5 loss. Is it really any worse if the score is 750 to 95? The objection to worksheets as "not quizbowl" is not one I would contest, but if they don't actually bias the game and if they keep a weaker team from giving up completely after their first tournament, then there is a legit argument for keeping them as part of a transition. Overall, to get back to the main point, the Association's approach is to take the existing structure and start turning the large ship toward the right direction--a slow process, as I can attest to from our experience in Alabama, but certainly one that can be achieved.

2) I believe that, honestly, both groups believe that they are doing the right thing for the students and players in Louisiana.

3) I believe that a lot of "he said, she said" is happening that is also muddying the waters between the two groups. I tried to get both sides to agree to a sit-down meeting face-to-face (or face-to-skype) at HSNCT, where some outside people they both consider neutral could act as moderators or go-betweens, but both sides are so mistrusting of the motivations and/or actions of the other that they are reluctant to even agree to that small step. Indeed, I was told flat out that one side saw no purpose in having such a meeting, as they were basically content to destroy the other, and didn't see the need to reconcile. Again, I think this may appear to be an "optimal choice" solution on some level, but in a state where QB is already weakly organized, trying to entirely eliminate a sizable group of people who are interested in helping sponsor quiz bowl seems to me to be a less than optimal solution.


All of the above is either (a) my opinion, or (b) derived from conversation with the persons involved. If I misrepresented one group or the other, I apologize, and I'm sure I will be corrected. However, all of the above is true and reported as honestly as I can do so, and as I have no real stake in this fight other than hating to see two organizations in conflict when both claim to want to help the students of the state play quiz bowl, I hope all involved realize that I have no reason to try to lie or misrepresent.

I continue to hope that this situation eventually is resolved.

<Edited to correct mistake regarding the names of the organizations and with the information that Mr. Barry was not compensated financially as I had previously believed.>
Last edited by Joshua Rutsky on Wed Mar 22, 2017 12:13 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by An Economic Ignoramus » Wed Mar 22, 2017 10:19 am

Joshua Rutsky wrote:Again, I have no verification of that from the Association, but the head of the Association, who according to the website is Chris Romero
This may not be conducive to resolving the current brouhaha, but my internet sleuthing has revealed that Chris Romero is head of the Alliance, whereas the Association is run by Ashley Dugas.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by Joshua Rutsky » Wed Mar 22, 2017 10:24 am

Edited to correct all the swapped names of Association and Alliances. This is confusing, to say the least.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by An Economic Ignoramus » Wed Mar 22, 2017 10:26 am

Joshua Rutsky wrote:Edited to correct all the swapped names of Association and Alliances. This is confusing, to say the least.
For all future posters I'd recommend bolding all instances of "Association" or "Alliance" to make it slightly less confusing for outsiders.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by quizbowllee » Wed Mar 22, 2017 10:27 am

I just read all this. I don't know why.

But, as an outsider, it looks like either Jake or Josh mixed up the "Alliance" and the "Association."

According to Jake, it is the ALLIANCE that is promoting good quiz bowl (IE - pyramidal, no worksheets, etc). According to Josh, it is the ASSOCIATION that is promoting those things.

Having known Chris Romero for a long time, I have a hard time believing that he is the one promoting bad, antiquated quiz bowl.

So, just to clarify - who is who in this debate?

Also, worksheets suck.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by quizbowllee » Wed Mar 22, 2017 10:27 am

And, even as I posted this, it was corrected....
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by Father Comstock » Wed Mar 22, 2017 7:30 pm

This thread makes me want to start an Indiana Quiz Bowl Alliance next year.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by jrbarry » Fri Mar 24, 2017 2:55 am

1. LQBA's (Louisiana Quiz Bowl Association) State Tournament Saturday (March 25) at LSU in Baton Rouge has enough staff to accommodate the 29 teams registered.

2. LQBA never agreed to use computational questions at all. It was decided in that December meeting NOT to use computational questions. And we are not using computational questions even though some are included in the NAQT set we are using.

3. LQBA is NOT using a single elimination playoff. We never seriously considered using a single elimination playoff. We are using rebracketing in our afternoon rounds.

4. In December, Kevin Marshall was chosen as Vice President of the LQBA. He was definitely not left out from the beginning. Kevin did choose to resign as VP in January, I think. He certainly was not run off and we would be welcomed back.

5. The many high school coaches who are now part of LQBA would love to have as many college bowl people in the state help us promote quiz bowl. We have about 12 LSU and ULL students working in this year's State Tournament.

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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by bolshevik » Sat Mar 25, 2017 9:53 am

Maybe it would be a good idea, for clarity's sake, to refer to the Alliance as LQBALL and Association as LQBASS.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by kitakule » Sun Mar 26, 2017 2:19 am

I hope the Association and the Alliance can resolve the dispute quickly. Even though Mrs. Dugas is an awesome person (she was my coach for four years, after all), I'm inclined to side with the Alliance on this matter seeing as, well, they were here first. Also, the worksheet round is archaic and keeping it around just to give people extra points won't help the transition. However, I do think LSU was wrong to pull out of this tournament so close to the date.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by The Ununtiable Twine » Sun Mar 26, 2017 3:33 pm

kitakule wrote:Even though Mrs. Dugas is an awesome person.
I want to second this. Even though the Association and Alliance are having some major disputes, I actually think that Ashley is an amazing person. I enjoy officiating at the ESA Invitational quite a bit. It's quite awesome to enter the room you're staffing in only to be greeted with tons of candy and thank you notes from the kids. She's quite literally one of the nicest coaches I have ever met.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by cchiego » Mon Mar 27, 2017 5:18 pm

If the choice is between the handful of schools that previously showed up to NAQT State tournaments and the 24+ schools competing in this new event on pyramidal questions, then there should be no question--this is a great deal for pyramidal quizbowl! Yes, worksheets are not ideal, but if this is truly a transitional thing for this year, then it's most definitely a tradeoff worth making.

There's often a bizarre "PURITY OF ESSENCE" mindset in college quizbowl that unless you do everything 100% the "right" way, you're a terrible, horrible human being (see: some of the comments in this thread that are surprised at how nice someone who isn't 100% onboard with their agenda is). Outside of ethical issues, reasonable minor compromises can be made, especially if they result in more broad-based participation in quizbowl in an area and are designed as transitory. That seems to be what's happening here.

It's also not the end of the world if there are tournaments throughout the year on pyramidal questions that have variations in their format. Even a tournament with math comp, worksheets, and single elimination--provided there was fair seeding in the prelims and pyramidal questions and rules used--would be fine, esp. in a region that's used to another format. Alliance members could still continue to host standard 20/20 "best practices" tournaments and teams could choose which events to attend (or they might enjoy attending a variety). So long as the questions themselves are well-written pyramidals, it's pretty hard to mess up.

Some of these other things are just petty. Whining about whether or not previous LAAC tournaments were "state championships" is pretty much angels-dancing-on-the-heads-of-a-pin territory. Perhaps there's a reason some of the Alliance members aren't being taken seriously by the coaches.

Now, having competent tournament hosts/moderators for the state tournament does seem like a serious issue, but JR Barry (!) is a pretty darned experienced and competent tournament director. I have no idea why his TDing appears to have been the line in the sand unless in the years since he left Brookwood he founded a secret society to promote bad quizbowl and ran multiple events into the ground or something. I don't think he'd do that. In contrast, attempting to renege on a commitment to host a tournament at the last minute is the stupidest possible "scorched earth" tactic out there outside of trying to steal all the NAQT packet set reservations in advance. Who does that?

Unless there's more to this story that hasn't been posted here, this is a classic Judean Peoples's Front/People's Front of Judea situation. I hope it gets resolved in time for both groups to plan ahead for a full schedule of events across Louisiana and joint outreach efforts next year.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by sgoebel » Mon Mar 27, 2017 6:36 pm

Caddo Magnet, Byrd, and Captain Shreve are planning to have high school tournaments next year. We should also have at least two middle school tournaments - one in the Fall at Byrd and one in the Spring at Caddo Magnet.

There are two tournaments still (I think) scheduled for this year. I believe Kevin Marshall is hosting a high school tournament at Tulane on April 29th called the Big Easy Classic. It looks as if he is also organizing a middle school tournament in New Orleans to be held in April.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by An Economic Ignoramus » Mon Mar 27, 2017 8:03 pm

cchiego wrote:Unless there's more to this story that hasn't been posted here, this is a classic Judean Peoples's Front/People's Front of Judea situation. I hope it gets resolved in time for both groups to plan ahead for a full schedule of events across Louisiana and joint outreach efforts next year.
This was the exact metaphor I was thinking of as regards this situation. From what I've observed, the differences between these organizations seem largely personal, as their goals seem pretty much the same.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by The Ununtiable Twine » Mon Mar 27, 2017 8:11 pm

cchiego wrote:If the choice is between the handful of schools that previously showed up to NAQT State tournaments and the 24+ schools competing in this new event on pyramidal questions, then there should be no question--this is a great deal for pyramidal quizbowl!
The reason for the lower attendance at previous NAQT State championships was because teams from previous years chose LAAC format over NAQT format. This view is certainly held by at least one member of the Association. In addition, scheduling quizbowl tournaments in the Spring in Louisiana has always been notoriously difficult as competition dates are hard to come by and Louisiana already had a historic format that held a state quizbowl championship. Tournament attendance was bound to be low no matter which of the few available weekends it was held on and no matter how many emails I sent.
cchiego wrote:Yes, worksheets are not ideal, but if this is truly a transitional thing for this year, then it's most definitely a tradeoff worth making.
It's not a transitional thing for this year. Check back next year when the worksheet rounds are still there, and the year after that, and the year after that. While this tactic may have drawn in some teams, I highly doubt that there will be an effort to ween teams off of worksheet rounds, even though they add more time to tournaments, rarely ever change the results of games, and lead to things such as tournaments getting through only seven rounds by 4:30. By comparison, the state championships for the last two years averaged 10.5 rounds and we were out by 3:30. Granted we had higher quality staff on average, but that's a huge difference.
cchiego wrote:There's often a bizarre "PURITY OF ESSENCE" mindset in college quizbowl that unless you do everything 100% the "right" way, you're a terrible, horrible human being (see: some of the comments in this thread that are surprised at how nice someone who isn't 100% onboard with their agenda is).
I, for one, am not concerned with whether or not everything is done 100% "the right way". I'm more concerned that things are done well rather than done poorly, and done in a way that advances good quizbowl in the state, not sets it back. Louisiana has continued to move forward in recent years. I am happy that the Association decided to use NAQT questions for the championship tournament.
cchiego wrote:So long as the questions themselves are well-written pyramidals, it's pretty hard to mess up.
It is my understanding that the worksheet rounds at this tournament were hand-written by the Association. If this is incorrect, someone feel free to correct me. If worksheet / lightning rounds are used, I think the least we can ask for is that those questions are ordered from NAQT to keep a consistent standard of quality.
cchiego wrote:Some of these other things are just petty. Whining about whether or not previous LAAC tournaments were "state championships" is pretty much angels-dancing-on-the-heads-of-a-pin territory. Perhaps there's a reason some of the Alliance members aren't being taken seriously by the coaches.
Taking someone's petty attack against me and suggesting that it is a reason for me "not to be taken seriously by the coaches" makes me take you less seriously as a poster. That comment is a bit of a stretch as I've always had a great relationship with the overwhelming majority of Louisiana coaches I've worked with since I started directing tournaments in 2005. I'll give you the benefit of the doubt - you may have been referring to someone else.
cchiego wrote:Now, having competent tournament hosts/moderators for the state tournament does seem like a serious issue, but JR Barry (!) is a pretty darned experienced and competent tournament director. I have no idea why his TDing appears to have been the line in the sand

I think the main point that needs to be made in all of this mess that perhaps hasn't been made before can be described as follows. In December, we met in order to determine a direction quizbowl in Louisiana was to go in. Naturally, quizbowl momentum has good quizbowl overtaking other formats. This is good news. We (members of both current organizations) met to talk about making a state organization that included, well, all of us. Otherwise, why hold a meeting? We discussed a whole bunch of things - organizational structure, tournament director for the state tournament, preferred format, you name it. We (all of the people at the meeting) agreed to make Ashley the president because she was the organizer of the meeting. We even agreed to call the new organization the "Louisiana Quiz Bowl Association" - Kevin actually came up with the idea. Why would he suggest anything with the initials LQBA in them if there wasn't a plan to unify quizbowl in Louisiana? There already was an LQBA in Louisiana before this meeting. If there was a plan to have two separate organizations, it would be really weird for them to go by very similar names, don't you think? That alone in itself should be enough to suggest that the meeting was held to consolidate power in Louisiana.

So if the point of the meeting was truly to unify quizbowl in Louisiana, why then does the Association's board of directors consist of zero people currently on the Alliance side of things? "Because you are rude people" doesn't quite cut it as an explanation because, again, we supposedly called the meeting to unify the quizbowl scene in Louisiana. A lot of us were very excited to come up with a new structure that was inclusive of everyone in the state. Finally, LAAC was gone and we could move on from having the days where their bad format's presence and scheduling difficulties led to one state championship being contested. As LAAC was no longer around, the unified organization would have little competition. Don't you think we were excited about this?

But instead the later part of the meeting was full of arguments about petty things, such as whether or not to keep individual stats at the state championship, whether or not to have worksheet rounds, whether or not to have calculation tossups at state, whether or not I was directing a "legitimate" state championship and whatnot. The longer the meeting went on, the more uncomfortable I became. We had agreed to hold the state championship at LSU on March 25 and it was going to be staffed by good quizbowl people and hosted by JR Barry. But keep in mind we had also agreed to have a state organization with structure that gave both sides proper representation. We discussed potential at-large memberships in the Association for major contributors to the state's cause, school memberships, and whatnot. The very key to this entire argument is that this never happened. We agreed to staff the tournament, but that was under the assumption that the power structure of the state organization was going to consist of many more people from what we call "good quizbowl." Naturally, what is known as the Alliance became infuriated and, as the current members of the Association never seemed to have a plan to give any of us a seat at the table, we boycotted their tournament. Again, unanimously.

I would like to reiterate that I have no problems with JR Barry being the tournament director of the state championship. What I do have a problem with is that the Association immediately shot down any notions of Chris Romero or myself being the tournament director. While JR is a very accomplished director, the organization (which, at the time, was supposed to consist of more than just the current quartet) had suggested two additional directors with quite a bit of directing merit. Neither of us ever had a chance. There's a very subtle detail that I would like for the reader to notice. When responding to my initial lengthy post in this thread, none of the Association members (or anybody, for that matter) ever responded to my claims that they should include members of good quizbowl organizations in the state's top quizbowl organization, which I have hopefully demonstrated by now was planning on unifying quizbowl in the state. Why do you think that is? Everyone seems to have responded to the other things, but in all honesty, the thing no one responded to is at the core of this whole argument.

The very fact that the proposed structure of the Association and the actual current structure of the Association differ by so much leads me to believe that the members of what is now the Association never intended to adopt a fair power structure. I was never going to be the tournament director of 2017 Louisiana State because they decided that JR Barry was going to be the director ahead of time. For all of our hard work growing good quizbowl in Louisiana over the years, we were never going to have more than one seat at the table. We were never going to make decisions within the Association. If some people are going to go on and on about how withdrawing the staff and buildings is unethical, I think it's only fair to ask whether or not pretending to want to give us fair representation at the table and then withdrawing is unethical. I firmly believe that what is now called the Alliance never would have agreed to staff the state tournament if the Association had come out and informed us at the meeting that they weren't going to give us fair representation at the table. When we saw what was going on, we unanimously agreed to withdraw our support from the event.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by Romero » Mon Mar 27, 2017 9:39 pm

I believe that it is best for those involved with both the Alliance and the Association to move on. I believe we all should work for better quiz bowl events in Louisiana. I applaud the idea of more tournaments in the northern part of the state. I hope that all our efforts lead to more teams from the state participating in additional quiz bowl opportunities both inside and outside of the state's borders.

Obviously there are some differences between the two groups and we have not yet been able to reconcile those. I remain hopeful that we will be able to do so in the future. Like others have said it is not a bad thing that Louisiana has two organizations working to facilitate "good" quiz bowl. For many years Louisiana had no organization dedicated to this purpose.

Kudos to the Association on a successful event this past weekend at LSU. Congratulations to Jesuit and St. Martin's on their victories.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by Rococo A Go Go » Mon Mar 27, 2017 9:55 pm

Forgive me from looking in as an outsider, but a lot of people in the quizbowl community have worked with the people involved with the collegiate programs which constitute the Louisiana Quizbowl Alliance. The Alliance has existed for some time and seems to do a fine job, and their individual contributions to the collegiate circuit have been very positive. I hope the Alliance folks continue to have a strong prescence in Louisiana quizbowl, and I worry about the outcomes of recent developments in the state circuit.

I don't know much about the Association folks, but I do know they have already created an alternative structure that appears to be attempting to supplant the Alliance. It appears that the belief of the Association is that the Alliance is not an adequate organization and needs to be replaced, for reasons I'm not completely sure I understand. Have the people at Louisiana, Louisiana Tech, LSU, and Tulane done something to the Association folks that the rest of us don't know about? It appears that the Association was formed to sideline the Alliance folks specifically. It appears that the Association folks hold bitter feelings over the fact that the Alliance folks have critiqued the now defunct, bad quizbowl format of LAAC. It appears that these differences reflect themselves in the worrying attributes (worksheets, slower rounds, etc.) of the Association-run NAQT State tournament. The sidelining of the Alliance folks appears to be related to Jake, Kevin, etc. arguing that changing the format and structure of NAQT State was unnecessary since the existing good quizbowl product in Louisiana was fine. Perhaps these appearances are merely perceptions formed through incomplete information, and not truly the heart of the issue. As I do not wish to see the contributions of the Alliance folks to cease anytime soon, I hope the Association has a much more positive view of the Alliance than appears to be the case.

Obviously the best long-term solution here is for the organizations to merge into one organization that adheres to good quizbowl principles. If the Association is committed to those principles, the Alliance should be magnanimous and advocate for a merger that includes an equal partnership between both parties. If the Association is not committed to the same goals as the Alliance, then the two groups are competitors and the Alliance should absolutely take whatever steps necessary to ensure its own survival.
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Re: Louisiana 2016-2017

Post by jrbarry » Tue Mar 28, 2017 2:56 pm

Chris: thanks for your kind words about the State Tournament on Saturday. I know Louisiana is your home state and you want to promote good quizbowl here. Hopefully Saturday moved us more in that direction than where we, as a state, were before.

Jake: all the major decisions about LQBA's first state tournament were made in that meeting where all the college bowl teams (and you) were represented. The decision to use NAQT questions, the decision to use rebracketing instead of a single elimination playoff, the decision to use a worksheet this year, the decision to have State at LSU in Baton Rouge, and the decision about who would be director this year. We even decided that only college bowl people would be our readers, people from Tech, LSU, ULL, and Tulane. I asked you to be in charge of stats and you agreed. I asked Ryan to be in charge of the readers and he agreed. Of course all of you guys dropped out in January even though no major decision about State had been made since that December meeting. (Ryan M. had work conflicts.)

As for the coaches of LQBA, we hope all those who want to promote quizbowl in Louisiana will at least work with us if not join us formally as we continue with our two aims of hosting a quality state tournament and promoting quizbowl at every school in Louisiana that wants it.
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