Alabama 2006-2007

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Alabama 2006-2007

Post by quizbowllee »

I couldn't let those folks from Illinois get the jump on us this year!!!!

Seriously, though, what are everyone's thoughts on Alabama this year?

I'll weigh in when I hear some other thoughts.
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Post by AndyShootsAndyScores »

ISS is still going to be a good team this year. Grissom, as always, will be very good. I'm not so sure about ASFA and LAMP though. I never found out who on LAMP's team was either a senior or lower classman. Bob Jones is losing Andrew, but John outscored him at NAQT State and another tournament. CCA's losing Carter and Matt, and I odn't think any of the others can fill those shoes. Cullman lost Daniel, who did almost all of their scoring. Southside still has what's-his-name (I think it's Matt but I'm drawing a serious blank right now, having only played them once). We at BMHS still have our starters and will be juniors this year.

Based on last year's performance and taking into account the loss of seniors, here are my rankings:

ASCA:

1) ISS or BMHS
2) Grissom
3) Bob Jones
4) Southside

On the bubble: LAMP, CCA, ASFA.

NAQT:

1) BMHS
2) ISS
3) Bob Jones

On the bubble: Any other good team that decides to participate this year.
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Post by Matthew D »

I will have to wait till we play a few before I can do any assessment but I do think that BMHS should have a good year and I am hoping we have a good opening year at Scottsboro
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Post by quizbowllee »

I think that Matt from Southside graduated. I may be wrong, though.
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Post by Matthew D »

I am with you Lee, I think he did also.. I we played against him at Snead and he plowed my underage out manned crew
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Post by Trevkeeper »

I'm curious: when Alabama teams (and I mean active ones, such as Lee's BMHS squad) play out of state (excluding nationals), where do they go, mostly? More specifically how far do they travel? Is it mostly Tennessee tournaments, or do some travel to Kentucky, or even Wash U's tournament in St. Louis? If a tournament will have national level competition, does it make a team want to travel the extra distance? I'm just wondering how other states are in this respect compared to our state.
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Post by quizbowllee »

Trevkeeper wrote:I'm curious: when Alabama teams (and I mean active ones, such as Lee's BMHS squad) play out of state (excluding nationals), where do they go, mostly? More specifically how far do they travel? Is it mostly Tennessee tournaments, or do some travel to Kentucky, or even Wash U's tournament in St. Louis? If a tournament will have national level competition, does it make a team want to travel the extra distance? I'm just wondering how other states are in this respect compared to our state.
We've been to UT-Chattanooga a few times. They draw teams from TN, AL, GA, SC, KY, etc. We've also traveled to Georgia. Our budget is pretty tight, so we're not able to go too far during the regular season. I'm going to see, though, if it might be possible to somehow get the team to TJ's fall tournament in Virginia this year, for the very reason you speak of: national-caliber teams. I doubt I'll make it happen, but we'll see.
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Post by fancynancy »

Does Grissom still pretty much refuse to go to anything?
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Post by quizbowllee »

fancynancy wrote:Does Grissom still pretty much refuse to go to anything?
Yep.
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Post by AndyShootsAndyScores »

They claimed they were going to NAQT State last year, but something about a sponsor gettiong sick or something stopped them.

I could've sworn Matt was a junior. Oh well.
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Post by Matthew D »

I am planning on taking my team to UTC's tournaments (it's an hour up the road for me) and I am thinking about going to UG's tournament. I want to do at least one major travelling trip a year if we can, but as Lee said budget is tight
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Post by quizbowllee »

Well, here are some of my thoughts regarding Alabama this year.

First, many of the great teams from the last 2-3 years are losing their best players and may not be as competitive as before. I'm guessing that CCA, ASFA, and Cullman are all going to be weaker than before. I don't know for sure, though. David seems to have a good deal of confidence in ASFA's ability to reload. Cullman, though, I think is gonna be dead in the water for at least this year. CCA is not only losing Carter and Matt, but are also having a coaching change. I think Matt is going to be helping them in a coaching capacity, so they might still be dangerous, but I don't think they're going to be close to last year.

Bob Jones is sorta up in the air. Losing Santi hurts them. But, John I. is pretty strong and will probably get better. I also get the impression that David White is a pretty good coach. If I recall correctly, Bob Jones is pretty good even when they're having a bad year.

Hoover is a team that freaks me out a little bit. They miss some of the most incredibly easy things. I still remember them not getting a Pike's Peak question that we negged. Even after hearing "Colorado peak named for explorer Zebulon," they didn't get it.... BUT, they made a 100 on a worksheet of Latin phrases - some that I'd never even heard of. So, Hoover might make some noise.

Scottsboro will be making their true high school debut. I know Matt Dennis is a good coach (he learned from me :cool: ). Just kidding. Seriously, though, Scottsboro's team is going to be young but motivated, and I know from experience that that is a dangerous combination.

Grissom is always good and always elusive. They're like the "Batman" of Alabama quiz bowl. They're always lurking in the shadows. I don't know what to expect from them. I imagine they will do well at ASCA and not show up for anything else.

Indian Springs... I think they are going to be Brindlee Mountain's toughest competition. Not only are they pretty good - Jenna is a great player and she's not alone - but this is also (if I recall correctly) Bob Cooper's last year before retiring from coaching. I can only imagine that after a great career like he has had, he will be ultra-motivated to go out with a state championship or two. I'm also sure that his team will be motivated to make sure that he goes out accordingly.

Brindlee Mountain. I'm always biased. Being as completely impartial as I can be, I think that we're probably the odds-on favorite to dominate Alabama this year. My team needs to do four things:
1) Stay focused. Don't choke against teams at critical times.
2) Establish a better work ethic.
3) Establish better team work
4) Produce a real leader
If we do those four things, I think we'll be looking at both NAQT and ASCA titles this year. That's a BIG "if", though.


There are also a handful of teams that might surprise some folks:

LAMP - David Z. alone is a big threat. Depending on the kind of teammates he has, they might be great.

Austin - Another good team that just needs some luck.

Brindlee Mountain B - I've never seen a team improve as fast as they have. It's entirely possible that some of "B" may become some of "A" and vice-versa. We're going to try and field two very competitive varsity teams all year long.

Buckhorn - They had a great team last year, but could never catch a break.

Russellville - All-freshmen last year, might hit their stride.



Anyway, these are my thoughts so far.

I hope that more Alabama coaches and players will become aware of this site and become involved in the discussions as the year progresses.

Good luck to everyone!
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Post by Captain Cullman »

I think Cullman will have a new coach next year (Thank God!), but you are probably still right about their chances unless the new coach makes good use of the Quiz Bowl class. And the team members must become more motivated.

By the way Lee, I never thanked you for making me a better quiz bowl player. If I hadn't attended the Brindlee Mountain NAQT tournament in my junior year, I might not have ever seen what good questions were like. Our team had made decent showings at the ASCA tournaments earlier in the year and were quite confident going into the Brindlee Mountain Tournament. There we had our butts handed to us. Going 8-8 would not have been so bad except that our losses were blowouts and our wins were often by one question (including the win over our b-team). After that, I realized how much work I needed to put into quiz bowl to make Cullman a top-tier team. I worked hours every night studying NAQT questions and other resources trying to become a better player. And my extra work payed off for a little while (last year's miracle run through the death pool at regionals which included Covenant Christian, Grissom, and Bob Jones). However, at state we folded because the rest of my team did not put in any effort to get better and our coach couldn't have cared less.

In my senior year, I thought this would be our year because we now had a quiz bowl class. How wrong I was. Most of our coach's lesson plans were busy work that had nothing to do with quiz bowl, such as writing facts from the Wallstreet Journal (no joke). To make matters worse, our coach invited some of the laziest students in the school into the class. They did not want to come to after school practices, but in the rare event that we had buzzer practice during class, those students had to be included though most of them sat with a blank expression on their face for a half hour and never buzzed in. We had too few buzzers for the whole class to participate, but people who had no interest in learning the material got to play. Why? Because, as my former coach put it,"This class is for everyone, not just YOU." My reply,"I never said it was just for me, but the course description that the actual team members were given said that we would use that time to become better." In fact, the course description compared the class to an Athletics period. Would the basketball coach invite just anyone to play basketball? NO, basketball team members have to earn a spot on the team, and then they would be enrolled in the class. Worst of all, the class did even more damage because the team's out of school practices became nonexistent; therefore, our team made no improvements during that trimester.

We came into regionals unprepared but were still able to advance to state through sheer luck. We lost to you guys in a last round heartbreaker due to a teammate's dumb answers, but as he said when I asked him to learn some new things,"I know a lot about the Bible; that's good enough." NO, it wasn't. When we heard that Austin had beaten Brindlee Mountain, I told my teammate that he should write a thank you letter to Austin because they had somehow beaten a much better team and gotten him off the hook. I thought he would take the hint after hearing that comment, but NO, the Bible was still all he needed to know. At state we lost by five points to Indian Springs. A win would have gotten us into the post rounds, but I got very little help from my teammates. (I scored 120 of our 260 points, and that's not counting the bonuses and worksheet questions that only I knew, which were most of them.) If the Bible man could have helped me on one bonus or two worksheet questions we would have advanced, but once again, he had nothing to offer. I pick on this one particular teammate because he could have been so much more in Quiz Bowl if he had put any extra effort into it; instead, he would skip practice to go play pool with his friends.

Speaking of skipping practice, my teammates made our coach's efforts to do a terrible job a lot easier by not showing up to practice. She didn't have to put in extra time and still received a huge stipend. Although two of my teammates had to work four days of the school week to afford a car, during their offdays they had some of the stupidest reasons for not showing up. Every month, one would say,"I have a hair appointment." I never asked him how much he payed someone to do nothing to his hair. He would always come to school the next day looking exactly the same. Another great excuse was,"I have to go to the bank." To which I would respond,"The bank stays open until five; we practice until 4:15." Then he would say,"That's not enough time." I would reply,"I know where you live, and we have the same bank. You have plenty of time, and even if you didn't you could come to practice for 45 minutes or an hour and leave early." He would answer,"No, I have to leave right after school to have time." Translation: "No, I'll use any excuse, no matter how stupid, to get out of practice."

Finally, when the subject of what tournaments to attend was broached. Our coach had one opinion on the matter: as few as possible. This was her excuse for not attending Brindlee Mountain's NAQT tournament last year,"WE ARE NOT GOING TO TOURNAMENTS TWO WEEKENDS IN A ROW!" When I looked to my teammates to override our coach, they were, unfortunately, in agreement with her about not going to Brindlee Mountain. They agreed about not going, not because the tournament followed another tournament so closely; instead, they did not want to go because of the NAQT format. They had the mindset of NAQT bad, ASCA good. Once again, they were wrong. NAQT was better than ASCA at showing how much they don't know. Both formats are good, but they also have their drawbacks. NAQT has better questions in terms of both knowledge base and structure, but the lack of bounce back bonuses bothers me. Too many times in NAQT matches the other team would get the toss up because we negged, and then they would blank the bonuses, which we could have aced. ASCA has the bounce back bonuses, but it also has too many ridiculously easy questions and hoses and awful worksheets (carpets and latin phrases?).

Anyway, I look back on my days of high school quiz bowl and think of what could have been. I have too many Tournament MVP and All Tournament Team plaques and medals that do not have corresponding team trophies in my former school's trophy cases. If our coach had put half the effort into making us a better team that you do for your team, Lee, our team might have been the team that no one wanted to face at regionals and state; instead, we were the team that had some great moments but was ultimately a disappointment.

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Post by quizbowllee »

Daniel, you described a whole lot of stuff that I went through as a player at Arab High School back in my day. When the opportunity to coach a team came up, I vowed to be the kind of coach I wish I had had.

To have a player from a rival team say that I helped them become a better player means a lot to me. I hope that wherever you're going to college that you will play there. That's where I hit my stride. I didn't really have any great teammates (no offense to anyone who might read this...), but I decided that if I had to do it alone, then I'd do my best.

On a side note - it is always amazing how many things kids come up with to get out of after-school practice, isn't it? Hair appointments, dentist, doctor... All things that could have been scheduled some other time. I've heard some REALLY creative ones (We have to have an intervention for my alcoholic uncle) and some REALLY bad ones (I can't come to practice because I have to play paint ball).

I'm pretty tough on the team at BMHS and BMMS, and I don't think they always appreciate that, mainly because they've never had any other coach and don't know what it's like to have a coach who doesn't give a crap.

You said that your coach didn't want to go to tournaments two weekends in a row. My coach in high school wouldn't go to tournaments on weekends AT ALL. We only got to go to the tournaments that were on Fridays. When we made it to regionals, she complained about having to drive the 1/2 mile from her house to Arab Jr. High for regionals. Then, when we made it to state one year, instead of being proud, she complained about having to go to B'ham on a weekend....

Anyway, like I said, I hope you play in college. Also, keep in touch through the board. I might need you to be a moderator at some tournaments if you're available.

Good luck as always,

Lee
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Post by AndyShootsAndyScores »

Heh, I remember the alcoholic uncle excuse.
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Post by Golden Tiger 86 »

AndyBrindlee Mountain wrote:Heh, I remember the alcoholic uncle excuse.
That just sounds funny.
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Post by AndyShootsAndyScores »

Golden Tiger 86 wrote:
AndyBrindlee Mountain wrote:Heh, I remember the alcoholic uncle excuse.
That just sounds funny.
It was. When the student came back the next, Lee did a fake pulse reading/lie detector test to determine if he was lying. Hilarity ensued.
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Post by Golden Tiger 86 »

AndyBrindlee Mountain wrote:
Golden Tiger 86 wrote:
AndyBrindlee Mountain wrote:Heh, I remember the alcoholic uncle excuse.
That just sounds funny.
It was. When the student came back the next, Lee did a fake pulse reading/lie detector test to determine if he was lying. Hilarity ensued.
I swear, had I been there, I'd have had to be restrained from cracking up the second Lee started the machine.
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Post by AndyShootsAndyScores »

No, he did it with his hands.
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Post by Golden Tiger 86 »

AndyBrindlee Mountain wrote:No, he did it with his hands.
That's even funnier
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Post by Irreligion in Bangladesh »

AndyBrindlee Mountain wrote:No, he did it with his hands.
A la Meet the Parents? That would have been amazing to witness.

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Post by quizbowllee »

styxman wrote:
AndyBrindlee Mountain wrote:No, he did it with his hands.
A la Meet the Parents? That would have been amazing to witness.
That's where I got my inspiration. I knew the kid was lying, so it was easy to fake him out. I'm also fairly intuitive, so I really had him going. He was literally sweating. I asked him all sorts of questions and caught him in every single lie. It was hilarious. He actually thought I could tell he was lying by feeling his pulse.
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Post by Captain Cullman »

That's where I got my inspiration. I knew the kid was lying, so it was easy to fake him out. I'm also fairly intuitive, so I really had him going. He was literally sweating. I asked him all sorts of questions and caught him in every single lie. It was hilarious. He actually thought I could tell he was lying by feeling his pulse.
People on my team needed that kind of treatment although it probably wouldn't have bothered them. I would often catch someone in a lie, and he would just grin sheepishly like it didn't matter. One time, a teammate told me in first period that he couldn't come to practice that afternoon because he had an appointment with his doctor. A few hours later in fourth period he told me it was a hair appointment. When I asked him what happened to the doctor's appointment, he told me it was his hair doctor. After I stopped laughing, he broke down and admitted that he wasn't coming to practice because he had to play pool with his other friends. His response made me question playing him.

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Post by Captain Cullman »

Also, I would love to be a moderator at a tournament if I am home from Auburn.

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Post by DZ_LAMP »

Since i think rankings this early are irrelevent and completely incorrect, here is a list of the teams that will probaly make some noise:
LAMP, ISS, Grissom, BMHS, Bob Jones

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Post by quizbowllee »

DZ_LAMP wrote:Since i think rankings this early are irrelevent and completely incorrect, here is a list of the teams that will probaly make some noise:
LAMP, ISS, Grissom, BMHS, Bob Jones
They probably are irrelevent, but it's still fun to look at teams, consider what players graduated, etc., and make predictions.
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Post by DZ_LAMP »

True

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Post by Somerled »

I would pick Brindlee Mountain, ISS, and Grissom for the top three.

Also, I think Russelville has a lot of potential if they keep working.

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Post by DVader »

A little incentive to win ASCA State this coming year: After we won last spring, my coach worked with the state Department of Education to put together a financial package so that the state would pay for our trip. They did it so that it'd be available for future state champions to use for their trips to Florida. Good luck to this year's champion; they have a fantastic prize awaiting them.
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Post by quizbowllee »

DVader wrote:A little incentive to win ASCA State this coming year: After we won last spring, my coach worked with the state Department of Education to put together a financial package so that the state would pay for our trip. They did it so that it'd be available for future state champions to use for their trips to Florida. Good luck to this year's champion; they have a fantastic prize awaiting them.
That's awesome... I wish ASCA will affiliate with a more legit National Tournament than Panasonic, but at least the money is taken care of. Tell Mr. Chatman that we all appreciate the effort he put in to see this happen.
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Post by ASimPerson »

I've heard that Mr. White has left Bob Jones.

Does anyone more recent to the program have any info about this?

(Also, I heard he left "for Atlanta"...that doesn't really narrow it down, though...)
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Post by quizbowllee »

ASimPerson wrote:I've heard that Mr. White has left Bob Jones.

Does anyone more recent to the program have any info about this?

(Also, I heard he left "for Atlanta"...that doesn't really narrow it down, though...)
That will certainly hurt Bob Jones's team unless they find another good coach. I wonder if this was an unexpected "out of the blue" move. I distinctly remember talking to him at the NAQT State tournament in mid-April about "next year." He didn't sound - at that point - like he was planning on being anywhere other than Bob Jones.
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Post by Matthew D »

Might have been something like my move year before last Lee..
Hey Lee, you having your tournament in August?
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Post by quizbowllee »

For those who don't check the tournament announcements:

http://www.hsquizbowl.org/phpBB2/viewto ... 8182#38182

Please try to come if possible.
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Post by MattSHS »

I haven't stalked the boards in a couple of months, but to relieve anyone vying for one of the top spots on the ASCA All-State Team, yes, I did graduate this year.

Also, I enjoyed reading Daniel's post about his high school quiz bowl experience. I often felt that same frustration during my time competing, as it always seemed like one question (esp. the ten-point losses to Cullman at ASCA State last year and Bob Jones this year) or one minor mistake on my part prevented my team from accomplishing the goals I believed we could or should have achieved.

I'm definitely going to miss competing, though. If anyone has any information on the College Bowl scene at Vanderbilt, let me know. I would love to get involved.

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Post by First Chairman »

Didn't you see their website? And they put up an annnouncement for their fall tournament, I thought.
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Post by quizbowllee »

Still plenty of room at our Lion Bowl tournament on August 26. I'd like to see more of the Alabama "big dogs" show up for a little preview of the year to come. So far we have:

Walton (Ga)
Scottsboro A
Scottsboro B
Scottsboro C
Russellville A
Russellville B
Russellville C
Buckhorn
Cullman

I'd like to see LAMP, ISS, Grissom, Bob Jones, and ASFA.
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Post by Hobodog »

Mountain Brook will be struggling but there is some serious talent hidden in that team...I know it...just find a coach who can bring ou the agressiveness. (I think we are looking for a new coach...you know...5 or 6th time in as many years...pretty crazy but the kids care enough to keep finding new coaches)

As far as Bob Jones...they may be good but honestly, who would ever want to play against that pompuous asshole they have returning. (pretty sure the asshole was a junior last year) He nearly started the first SB fight I have ever seen at Marion last year.
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Post by DVader »

Hobodog wrote: As far as Bob Jones...they may be good but honestly, who would ever want to play against that pompuous asshole they have returning. (pretty sure the asshole was a junior last year) He nearly started the first SB fight I have ever seen at Marion last year.
He graduated last year and now attends UA, so you won't have to play him again. Since Mr. White left, I don't know what is going to happen with the team there. They still have a couple starters left from last year, but without Mr. White's coaching skills and passion, they might not be able to get it all together. We'll have to wait and see.

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Matt Weiner
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Post by Matt Weiner »

Hobodog wrote:As far as Bob Jones...they may be good but honestly, who would ever want to play against that pompuous asshole they have returning. (pretty sure the asshole was a junior last year) He nearly started the first SB fight I have ever seen at Marion last year.
This is not appropriate in the high school section.

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quizbowllee
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Post by quizbowllee »

I've seen quiz bowl fights before. They're sad. I was involved. It was sad.
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Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-TN)
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Post by Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-TN) »

quizbowllee wrote:I've seen quiz bowl fights before. They're sad. I was involved. It was sad.
I want to hear about this. Nothing ever happens in MO.

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quizbowllee
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Post by quizbowllee »

charlieDfromNKC wrote:
quizbowllee wrote:I've seen quiz bowl fights before. They're sad. I was involved. It was sad.
I want to hear about this. Nothing ever happens in MO.
Back in my high school days there was this senior team captain who hated that he had a freshman teammate (me) who was constantly out-scoring him. There was always huge tension between us. He'd had nothing but teammates who were amazed at his "awesomeness" for three years. Then, my class comes in and there are a few of us who are already as good as or better than him.

So, we were at the state tournament. I'd scored over half of the team's total points, and he'd probably put up about half the points that I had. Well, I buzzed in on a composers question with the answer "Schubert." Out of nowhere, he yells "What are you doing???" and punches me right in the face. Right there in the middle of the round, he just whacks me. I was actually in good shape in high school, I worked out a lot and played some sports... He didn't...

I very calmly told him to calm down.

After the match, I politely told our sponsor that I needed to step outside for a moment with our captain. She said she completely understood and "didn't see a thing." I'm not gonna go into details, but I did "explain" to him that I wasn't gonna put up with anything like that again. I also "convinced" him to apologize.

And - BTW - "Schubert" was right.


I've got another similiar story (from college) that I will save for another day...
Lee Henry
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quizbowllee
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Post by quizbowllee »

Out of state teams took 1st-3rd at the first invitational in Alabama this year.

1st - MLK A (Nashville)
2nd - Walton (Ga)
3rd - MLK B

So far, Alabama is taking a licking this year. MLK A dominated this tournament majorly. They averaged well over 400 ppg, whereas Walton (2nd place) averaged in the 250 range. The top Alabama team, Buckhorn A, averaged around 200.

After the tournament, MLK stuck around and played a scrimmage match againt Brindlee Mountain A. Brindlee Mountain won the scrimmage 215-160. We used a college packet from the Stanford Archives.

Some of the biggest Alabama teams weren't here. We haven't seen Grissom, ISS, or ASFA. But, overall, it looks like Alabama is weaker this year than last.
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DZ_LAMP
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Post by DZ_LAMP »

Care to elaborate why you think this year's Alabama teams are weaker.

Personally I think that although we dont have CCA and ASFA as strong as last year, the rising teams of Brindlee Mountain, ISS, Bob Jones, and LAMP more than compensate for them.

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Post by quizbowllee »

DZ_LAMP wrote:Care to elaborate why you think this year's Alabama teams are weaker.

Personally I think that although we dont have CCA and ASFA as strong as last year, the rising teams of Brindlee Mountain, ISS, Bob Jones, and LAMP more than compensate for them.
Fair enough. I'll explain.

Last year might have been the toughest Alabama has ever been. We had several GREAT teams: LAMP, ISS, Grissom, BMHS, ASFA, Cullman, Bob Jones, and CCA were all very, very strong. We also had some strong 2nd-tier teams (Buckhorn, Austin, Mtn. Brook) we occassionally beat some of the upper-tier teams.

This year, though, CCA lost all of their starters and their coach. Bob Jones lost their coach. Their future is questionable. Cullman lost their best players... and their coach. I saw them play this past weekend. They are a far, far cry from where they were last year. ASFA also lost their best players...

I think Brindlee Mountain, LAMP, and ISS will be good this year. But, overall I think the state is going to be weaker. Grissom is always a wildcard. They're good even when they're bad.... But I just don't see them winning ASCA again. I think two years in a row without the title might have finally broken their spell. I could be wrong.

Anyway, that's what I meant. I'm looking at it from the "Who is the biggest competition for Brindlee Mountain this year?" standpoint. Right now, I think that Indian Springs and LAMP are the only teams that might give us a real run for it in Alabama. But - yet again - I could be wrong....
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Post by Matthew D »

Well if my group of freshmen that I have play like they did on Saturday, we would be lucky to be able to whip a bunch of junior high teams...
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Post by DZ_LAMP »

I agree with you about the abundance of "1st-tier teams" last year. Hopefully the lack of as many strong teams this year will not mean any less success.

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Post by quizbowllee »

I heard today that Indian Springs's strongest player, Jenna, is no longer at ISS. Anyone know if that's true? That's going to really hurt ISS... But, if she's still in-state and playing for someone else, that team will be tough.
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Post by Byko »

So I've seen that the ASCA "Fun Tournaments" at LAMP and St. Bernard are supposed to be this weekend. Anyone have any information, possible fields, things to expect, etc.?

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