Prison Bowl XII, Main Site (Hunter), 3/23/2019

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Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War
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Prison Bowl XII, Main Site (Hunter), 3/23/2019

Post by Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War »

Hunter College High School shall be hosting our 12th annual Prison Bowl invitational tournament on Saturday, March 23, 2019, where we'll be using our house-written Prison Bowl XII set! Hunter College High School is located at 71 E 94th Street, New York, NY, 10128, between Park and Madison Avenues. For questions and/or concerns, email tournament director Daniel Ma at [email protected], where co-TD Rachel Yang may also be reached.

Registration

To register for this tournament, please fill out the form linked in the next forum post. We will email you with a confirmation and invoice. The temporary field cap is 36 teams.

Payment

$70 for the first team from a school
$60 for each subsequent team
-$5 for every working buzzer system
-$10 for each good moderator
Minimum fee for schools bringing n teams = $50*n

Further discounts (such as for travel) can be negotiated on a case-by-case basis.

We prefer payment through a check made out to HCHS Quiz Bowl on the day of the tournament. If this is absolutely impossible, cash may be accepted upon negotiation.

Teams who drop within 3 days of the tournament must still pay registration fees, since last minute cancellations are inconvenient for organizers and create the possibility that teams may not play the full number of rounds for which they paid. Additionally, teams who have indicated that they are bringing buzzers cannot change that status within 3 days of the tournament; if they do, they will both not receive a buzzer deduction and pay a $10 "inconvenience fee," as that may also jeopardize other teams' enjoyment of the tournament.

Question Set

Prison Bowl XII is a set with difficulty between regular and nationals, written by the Hunter College High School team. The Head Editor is Daniel Ma, Vice Head Editor Rachel Yang, and other editors Ms. Caitlin Samuel, Brian Lu, Asher Jaffe, and Benjamin Chapman.

The distribution, which does not include computational math, is as follows:

4/4 Literature (1/1 American, 1/1 British, 1/1 European [including Russian], 1/1 World and Ancient/Classical)
4/4 History (1/1 American, 1.2/1.2 European, 1.8/1.8 World [including Ancient, Other, and cross-categories within history])
4/4 Science (1/1 Biology, 1/1 Chemistry, 1/1 Physics, 0.5/0.5 Mathematics [non-computational], 0.5/0.5 Astronomy/Cosmology and Earth Sciences]
2.5/2.5 Fine Arts (1/1 Painting and Sculpture, 0.2/0.3 Other Visual including Architecture, Photography, Film, Dance, Performance, Decorative, Design], 1/1 Classical Music, 0.3/0.2 Other Auditory [including Opera, Jazz, Musicals, World Music])
2.3/2.3 RMP (0.8/0.8 Religion, 1/1 Mythology, 0.5/0.5 Philosophy)
1/1 Social Science
1/1 Geography (including the study of geography)
0.6/0.6 Current Events
0.6/0.6 Pop Culture and Sports
1/1 Tiebreaker (Literature, History, Science, Fine Arts, Mythology, or Geography)

Past Prison Bowls can be found at quizbowlpackets.com.

More detailed information can be found at http://hsquizbowl.org/forums/viewtopic. ... 09&t=21605

Tournament Format

Tournament games will follow standard ACF rules of untimed rounds consisting of 20 tossups and 20 three-part, 30 point bonuses (without bouncebacks). Ties will be broken by tiebreaker tossups. 15 point powers and -5 negs before the end of the tossup apply, but no double negs.

The tournament itself will consist of bracketed round-robin prelims and rebracketed round-robin playoffs, the details of which will be decided after the field size is determined. Teams will play between 9 and 13 rounds, depending on the field size. There will be trophies for top teams, as well as book prizes for top scorers.

Registration will be from 8:00 to 8:45, and the first round will begin at 9:00. The tournament will end between 17:00. and 18:30, depending on the the field and hence structure of the tournament.

Transportation
Our school is located at 71 East 94th Street, New York, NY, 10128, between Park and Madison Avenues. It is very close to the 96th Street stop on the 6 train line, and is also accessible via the 96th Street stop on the Q line, located on 2nd Avenue. We can also be reached by the M1-4 buses along 5th and Madison Avenues, M101-103 buses on Lexington and 3rd Avenues, and the crosstown M96 and M106 buses along 96th Street. Look for the large, red castle-like building. There is a bus drop-off area at our school on Park Avenue, and cars can park at Majestic Car Park on 94th Street between Park and Lexington Avenues.

Please note that Hunter is located in the center of the incredibly dense urban jungle that is Manhattan. Teams have encountered parking troubles during tournaments with especially large fields, so here is a list of other nearby car parks in case the curb around our school and Majestic Car Park are crowded:

Gallery Garage Corporation (>1 block away, 94th and Madison)
Icon Parking Systems (~2 blocks away, 94th and 3rd)
Icon Parking Systems (~3 blocks away, 95th between 2nd and 3rd)
Garage Management Company (~3 blocks away, 94th between 2nd and 3rd)

Food
For breakfast, we'll provide juice and some top-notch New York City bagels, and for lunch, we'll release teams for about an hour to explore the numerous local eateries. We'll provide a map detailing these.

Current Field (Teams/Staff/Buzzers)
"Cold-Hug" (1/0/0)
West Egg (2/0/0)
Livingston (3/0/0)
Clarke (1/0/0)
Edison (2/0/0)
Kellenberg (3/1/4)
Ithaca (3/1/2)
St. Joe's (2/0/0)
High Tech (4/0/4)
Miami Valley (1/0/0)
Island Trees (1/0/0)
"An Unnamed Bergen School" (1/0/0)
Bard (1/0/1)
Ridgewood (2/0/0)
"Team An Won" (2/0/0)
Great Valley (3/0/1)
Tenafly (1/0/1)
East Brunswick (2/0/2)
Stuyvesant (1/0/1)
Bronx Science (2/0/0)
"Mather" (1/0/0)
"Rope Meadows" (1/0/0)
TOTAL: 40 teams
Last edited by Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War on Sun Mar 17, 2019 7:42 pm, edited 25 times in total.
Daniel, Hunter College High School '19, Yale '23

Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War
Lulu
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Re: Prison Bowl XII, Main Site (Hunter), 3/23/2019

Post by Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War »

Daniel, Hunter College High School '19, Yale '23

Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War
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Re: Prison Bowl XII, Main Site (Hunter), 3/23/2019

Post by Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War »

A reminder to register soon, as our field is rapidly filling!
Daniel, Hunter College High School '19, Yale '23

Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War
Lulu
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Re: Prison Bowl XII, Main Site (Hunter), 3/23/2019

Post by Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War »

Our first field cap will be at 28 teams, which we are almost at!
Daniel, Hunter College High School '19, Yale '23

Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War
Lulu
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Re: Prison Bowl XII, Main Site (Hunter), 3/23/2019

Post by Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War »

33 teams now. 3 spots left! Please register soon if you want a spot
Daniel, Hunter College High School '19, Yale '23

Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War
Lulu
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Re: Prison Bowl XII, Main Site (Hunter), 3/23/2019

Post by Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War »

36 teams now, so our second field cap has been reached. However, due to improved capacity calculations, we can now host a 40 team field. A waitlist will be created for these final four spots
Daniel, Hunter College High School '19, Yale '23

Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War
Lulu
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Re: Prison Bowl XII, Main Site (Hunter), 3/23/2019

Post by Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War »

A call to all teams for moderators! A reminder that you receive a significant discount for doing so.

We wish to run a quality tournament and thus would like to be able to have less experienced mods "double up" with scorekeepers in their rooms to avoid delays.
Daniel, Hunter College High School '19, Yale '23

Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War
Lulu
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Re: Prison Bowl XII, Main Site (Hunter), 3/23/2019

Post by Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War »

EDIT: Field closed
Daniel, Hunter College High School '19, Yale '23

Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War
Lulu
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Re: Prison Bowl XII, Main Site (Hunter), 3/23/2019

Post by Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War »

Considering the very high rate of drops we have had so far, please don't be turned away by a full field, since you will likely be bumped off of the waitlist.
Daniel, Hunter College High School '19, Yale '23

Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War
Lulu
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Re: Prison Bowl XII, Main Site (Hunter), 3/23/2019

Post by Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War »

Thank you so much for coming to Prison Bowl today! By all reports, the games were intense and fun; we hope you enjoyed the tournament and had a great time, and we loved having you at Hunter!

Congratulations to High Tech, Team An Won, and Miami Valley for getting 1st, 2nd, and 3rd respectively! High Tech has impressively gone a third straight year of winning Prison Bowl, a feat to be greatly commended. Prelim statistics are at http://hsquizbowl.org/db/tournaments/5575/; playoff statistics will be up within the next few days.

Additionally, we really hope you enjoyed playing the set, entirely written and edited by current Hunter students, as much as we enjoyed writing it! Since we wrote the set, we would also love constructive criticism on it; we have several mirrors and look to make the set even better with your feedback. Please feel free to send the feedback by email or on a private usergroup on these forums that shall be created soon, or by any other method you prefer.
Daniel, Hunter College High School '19, Yale '23

bmccauley
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Re: Prison Bowl XII, Main Site (Hunter), 3/23/2019

Post by bmccauley »

So I'm going to preface this by saying that my team greatly enjoyed the trip to NYC, getting to play some different teams, and meet new people. They also said they would definitely consider coming back in the future. However, there were several things that I observed and they shared with me that should be addressed as well as some things we overheard in other conversations. I'll also conclude with some things I thought went really well.

1. The set (which I'm hoping will be emailed to teams that competed so I can share some specific feedback to the hosts?) had some very, very difficult answerlines and bonus parts...we had several moderators pretty much chuckle as they were reading the parts/clues. We even had a moderator apologize to teams on some of the questions as they were playing, pretty much commenting that they couldn't believe certain things were asked. I'm all for challenging questions but there were questions that it seemed like several players in the room commented on it feeling incredibly random.

2. The set also seemed to have some repeats/topics that may need to be spread out a bit more. I don't want to get into specifics publicly (nor could I as it is not clear and I would like to see the set again first), but I think some TUs/Bonuses might need to be moved to different rounds/reworked due to content. Minor adjustments that could make the set play smoother.

3. Logistics: Both Ithaca and us had one of our teams partway through Round 5 before another of our teams had even started Round 4. I know tournaments only move as fast as your slowest reader but that disparity was way too large. This led to our A team waiting around for over 45 minutes waiting for our other teams to finish before they could head to lunch (which was then abbreviated to about 40 minutes for our team, prior to the email which our team saw after rushing back for 1 pm). Outside of the minor inconvenience of timing that impacted only a couple of teams, I worry about a team not realizing they are a round ahead and inadvertently discussing things with a teammate, assuming they are done the same round if they are both standing in the hallway. There was also a fairly long delay in determining the final crossovers for seeding.

4. Teams: Not that I care at all about a chimera team since I just want students to be able to play (though this is the issue we overhead others discussing), I was curious as to why the tournament kept the House team in the field when compressing from 37 to 36 teams? It seems like most tournaments first drop all house teams before having creative solutions like that? Perhaps there was more to this than was shared with us, but that seemed very unusual and not in what has generally seemed as "best practices" of tournament hosting from our experience. I know if it had been shared with coaches, we would have gladly dropped a 3rd team to accommodate the tournament field as we had a few players end up being unable to attend as the tournament approached.

4a. Teams/Seeding: I'm not sure how common it is to let individual PLAYERS play under pseudonyms or to have "A" team rosters play as "B" teams (I've only really seen it a few times in my years coaching and those were times teams were looking for extra nats bids), but I'm curious as to why it was allowed. I'm not sure how that messed up seeding for the tournament, if at all, but the Tolui bracket (which my B team won while our A missed playoffs in a different bracket) made me question the seeding a bit.

5. We had a few moderators that had some very different applications of the rules in regards to timing and leniency on accepting answers. We also had a moderator that added commentary to questions while in the middle of the question that often helped disclose potential answerlines or eliminate potential answers (such as comments like "well it's not really that"). The same moderator that checked his/her phone several times during the same match and refused to give our team a score check after tossup 19 (the reasoning, I assume, was that the outcome of the match wouldn't be changed regardless of outcome of the TU--but there was no reason to refuse informing they team they were up by 55+ points).


Now, to the good: I found MOST of the moderators were great. They kept the match moving at a good pace, had no real need for replacement tossups/bonuses, helped newer scorekeepers when questions arose, and were very supportive of the players (including talking to them between matches with downtime). I also greatly appreciated the fact that almost all the rooms had a scorekeeper and a moderator. Of that matches I watched for my teams, I only saw one room that didn't have a separate scorekeeper. Plus, the staffers were open to comments on pacing from players/coaches and the scorekeepers were very amicable when resolving score differences with players and coaches. We also appreciated that Hunter started the meetings promptly as announced and provided such a great spread for breakfast (which our players loved after traveling since 4:30 AM to get there).

The directors were very helpful in locating buzzers when we were preparing to leave and the staff had great suggestions for us out-of-towners on best routes to go various places, including our AM travel to get to the school, lunch, and suggestions for dinner.
Bernard McCauley
Coach, Great Valley High School (PA)

nsheidlower1
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Re: Prison Bowl XII, Main Site (Hunter), 3/23/2019

Post by nsheidlower1 »

The New York Quiz Bowl Alliance's writeup to Prison Bowl XII:
https://www.nyqballiance.org/blog/prison-bowl-xii
Noah Sheidlower

President of West Egg QB
Founder of the New York Quiz Bowl Alliance
Writer for NHBB
Great Neck South High School '19
Columbia University '23

Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War
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Re: Prison Bowl XII, Main Site (Hunter), 3/23/2019

Post by Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War »

Regarding the set itself, I'm not going to say anything specific on the public forum for obvious reasons, and a private forum is being created. But as you have mentioned, there were some small mishaps, which we are now fixing prior to our next mirror.

I'm not sure who the moderators in question were who were interpreting rules badly, not allowing score checks, checking their phones, and actively revealing question content; all of that should not happen, and it was bad that your team's experience was negatively affected by it. We had screened moderator quality quite thoroughly, and I will investigate into whatever happened and make sure it won't happen again in the future (if you have any more detailed information you'd like to provide, just email us privately).

And similarly, I will inquire into which moderators were holding back the brackets for future reference. Since most of the moderators, as you wrote, were quite good and had scorekeepers to help them out, I'm not sure what could have happened to slow someone down that much. Crossover scheduling speed was similarly impacted by moderator speed; your teams may have had the faster moderators and hence waited longer.

Regarding the teams, many people have asked about this, and I should now give a full explanation. 3 teams dropped on Friday, leading us to assemble a house team of interested people not in the club, intending for a 38 team bracket with some pools having byes. This would have worked out OK.

Then a fourth team dropped in the night, leaving us with 37 teams. We naturally did not want to dismiss the house team, many of whose members had traveled from afar to come and who would have had to head straight home again, and while we could have kept 40-team brackets with 3 pools having byes, seeing that 36 was such a nice number, we wanted to smooth out the brackets for everyone's sake. Two teams playing shorthanded asked about joining together. So we joined them, nobody (including themselves) expecting that they would play together as well as they did. We didn't make a wider call to coaches because it didn't look like any school could combine teams without creating substitutions, which we didn't want to pressure anyone to do.

Long story short, we would have dropped the house team if the final team that dropped from the field had done so more than 12 hours in advance; when we found out that that team had dropped, it was too late to tell the house team not to come.

In terms of the Tolui bracket, I think Great Valley B just played really well in prelims; by the end of prelims, they had a higher PPB than Great Valley A and the 9th highest PPB overall. Additionally, an unpredictable upset happened in the Tolui bracket (a 3-2 team losing to a 1-4 team), further messing it up. Bracketing was not messed up much by the pseudonymous players; we knew who they were beforehand, and playing under player pseudonyms is occasionally done.

Thank you both for the helpful feedback and for making the long trip to come over! I'm very glad that your team enjoyed the tournament.
Daniel, Hunter College High School '19, Yale '23

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