NAC schedule info/tournament thread

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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by jonpin » Mon May 25, 2009 6:48 pm

While obviously I can't comment on whether upholding the protest was right or wrong, if the protest was upheld giving the question just to your opponents is standard protest procedure AFAIK. The idea is that it should have gone (a) you buzz in and are called wrong, (b) other team only has a chance to answer that question. Since the question cannot continue as it is apparent what the answer is, a replacement is brought in, but you've already forfeited your chance to answer that question.
Other situations where this would come up are if you answer after time is called, and the mod says something that indicates the answer was right but too late; or if you buzz and your teammate answers and is called correct before someone notices that he wasn't the one to buzz in. In both cases, the question is ruined but your chance to answer is still gone.

And while it's no consolation to you, possibly this will get your coach to realize just what you said: "The tournament was the same old same old as before". With Chip, everyone should know by now what they're getting into. Good luck next year, and hopefully you'll succeed in getting to go to PACE or NAQT.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Deviant Insider » Mon May 25, 2009 7:45 pm

What was the correct answer? Bling? Baller? Hoo?
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Tegan » Mon May 25, 2009 8:46 pm

scquizbowl wrote:During the finals, he called a friend of his about some physics answer, which was right, and that gave them 30 extra points, which made it close for a while.
Was this physicist at the Iranian embassy in Washington?

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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by the return of AHAN » Mon May 25, 2009 10:35 pm

Junior NAC web site wrote:How to Qualify
Your team contingent must include four starters and one or more coaches. Alternate(s) are recommended but not required. In the early years of Junior Nationals we have only one qualification: your belief that your team will be competitive on a national level, having enjoyed a measure of success this school year on a local, regional, or state level.
oh wow.
Is there anyway to figure out where, exactly, the particpating schools are from? I'm particularly interested in the Junior NAC ones. I know Shakopee, Apple Valley, and Hopkins West are suburban MSP schools (I married a Minnesotan, if you're wondering why I know that.), but the rest are a mystery. I mean, there IS a Monticello in Illinois, after all, though I doubt that's the one.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by the return of AHAN » Mon May 25, 2009 10:45 pm

I look forward to reading the sequel to this.
To be sure, the Myth of Sisyphus by Albert Camus is a damned impressive buzz for a middle school team, but then to follow it up with "Peyton Manning is the NFL's most marketable player"? Really?
On 2nd thought, go read that passage and tell me what YOU think that Camus TU's answer space was... I'm wondering if maybe the answer itself was 'suicide,' which might just make Danville Bate good guessers.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Down and out in Quintana Roo » Mon May 25, 2009 10:49 pm

that crappy tournament wrote:Manheim Township tied it up again after this one: “Disney announced that rights of High School Musical will be released so what places can do their own performance at the local level?” (Ans. High schools)
Wow.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by I'm a goff (in case you couldn't tell) » Mon May 25, 2009 11:05 pm

The "host" presenting the trophy to the runner-up team looks like the antagonist from Kindergarten Cop. Just sayin'.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by at your pleasure » Mon May 25, 2009 11:13 pm

Wow. He put two repeats(high school musical and Le Grand Guerre) on the summary page. I will commend :chip: for using Camus in a suicide question instead of the obligatory transparent Russian lit clues.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by cvdwightw » Tue May 26, 2009 1:00 pm

Shcool wrote:What was the correct answer? Bling? Baller? Hoo?
Given this TRASHionals packet (bonus 5), I highly suspect that the protest was whether to accept "bling" for "bling bling" or vice versa.

Everything :chip: did in that protest situation is something that would exactly happen at a NSC or HSNCT game, with the exception that HSNCT/NSC moderators would not arbitrarily read an extra tossup after the replacement tossup was read. The absurdity of the situation is that a protest regarding a one-liner on "bling bling" decided a semifinal game.

Furthermore, it appears as if :chip: disregarded the correct rules of protests in the final. Having never gone to NAC, I am under the impression that teams get one protest for the entire tournament. Jesuit would have used their one protest in the semifinal to get into the final. How, then, do they get 30 extra points that they wouldn't have otherwise gotten, on what would have had to have been at least their second protest, and due to :chip: calling some people in the middle of the game (which goes against all reasonable protest resolution procedure)?

Andrew Hart and Chris Ray can complain all they want about ICT resolution procedure, but it seems that :chip: arbitrarily decides when proper protest resolution procedures (and, it seems, his own tournament rules) are ignorable.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by First Chairman » Tue May 26, 2009 1:06 pm

cvdwightw wrote:... it seems that :chip: arbitrarily decides when proper protest resolution procedures (and, it seems, his own tournament rules) are ignorable.
I know we don't like to do "QFT's"... but then again, this is more for me a "duh, what else is new".
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Deviant Insider » Tue May 26, 2009 1:17 pm

Yeah, I'm guessing :chip: ruled that Bling Bling is not a term since terms are supposed to be single words, or something along those lines.

Until that story is confirmed, however, I will hold out hope that the kid said Ho when he should have said Hoo.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by scquizbowl » Tue May 26, 2009 2:46 pm

Yup, on that physics bonus, he walked out of the room for a minute, called a friend of his who knew physics (the answer was 15/3 or 5), and they took 5, but not until :chip: called the guy asking for the answer.

Well, we'll have to wait until he does his summary in a few days, and then we can find out what his reasoning was.

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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by DumbJaques » Tue May 26, 2009 3:48 pm

Let me try to explain why we're going to NAC:
We don't have any people related to the program who spends anytime interacting with the quizbowl community, therefore we were unaware of the apparent poor quality of the tournament. If we still had McKenna we wouldn't be going. I didn't realize how bad it was until after the fact. Beyond that, I wasn't involved in the decision-making process, so IDK why we signed up (Probably simply naiveté among leadership) and why we didn't apply for a wild card to NSC (whether we would have gotten one or not is iffy, but we should have tried anyway)
I agree with Chris that we're not the RM of old. We're in a pretty sad state of affairs. Losing a coach and a captain was tough on us this year, both in the quality of play and the organization of the team.
I will interrupt part 274 of "Chip Beall rigs his tournaments and flouts all human decency" to point out this isn't entirely accurate. Ray, I know you're posting good faith and I believe you, and I am certainly sympathetic to the coaching situation. But I know for a fact that Raj, who seems to be setting team policy this year, had full knowledge of Chip's ethical issues and horrible questions. Additionally, I encouraged him to sign RM up for a PACE wildcard bid during the period when PACE dropped to a 62 team field and RM would have been sure to get a spot. Apparently this was not communicated to the rest of the team as I had hoped it would be. It isn't you, but there is someone who should be taking responsibility for this.

I certainly hope you guys won't be returning to this tournament, ever ever again. There are tons of resources (both human and material) to help a program with zero experience among its coaches and player leadership get stuff organized, so I hope you'll take advantage of them. Good luck in your efforts - we're all happy to support you.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Tegan » Tue May 26, 2009 7:11 pm

scquizbowl wrote:Yup, on that physics bonus, he walked out of the room for a minute, called a friend of his who knew physics (the answer was 15/3 or 5), and they took 5, but not until :chip: called the guy asking for the answer.

Well, we'll have to wait until he does his summary in a few days, and then we can find out what his reasoning was.
Confirming ... he needed to contact a physicist to confirm that 15/3 and 5 are equivalent? What was the problem, the person giving the answer didn't sing it or something?

I indeed look forward to see what drama caused this.

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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Angry Babies in Love » Tue May 26, 2009 9:28 pm

DumbJaques wrote: But I know for a fact that Raj, who seems to be setting team policy this year, had full knowledge of Chip's ethical issues and horrible questions. Additionally, I encouraged him to sign RM up for a PACE wildcard bid during the period when PACE dropped to a 62 team field and RM would have been sure to get a spot. Apparently this was not communicated to the rest of the team as I had hoped it would be.
It was not communicated to the rest of the team, unfortunately. And I think I brought up PACE wild card application to him as well, but alas here we are. Thanks for the support going forward, hopefully next year will be at least a little better.
And as long as I am at RM, we won't be going to NAC again.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Down and out in Quintana Roo » Tue May 26, 2009 9:44 pm

Good.

Raynell, you guys ARE going to be real good next year. You'd be a team that would be tough for us to beat, but we look forward to meeting up with you sometime in the fall hopefully. It's always good to see you and Sam again.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Angry Babies in Love » Tue May 26, 2009 10:09 pm

Thanks, and we can't wait to play you guys again.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by scquizbowl » Wed May 27, 2009 3:55 pm

Yes, he gave them 30 points, in lieu of the protest rule.

Also, earlier on in the tournament, we were playing another game, and the electronic score didn't change after a few questions. One time, it stopped keeping up for the last 5 questions, and it recorded a 25 point loss for Horace Greeley when it was actually a 25 point win. Chip was mad that our team saw that the score was updating, and he threatened to give a 10 point penalty to us for arguing about that.

That was not in their rulebook, but he added stuff this year.

Here's their rulebook.

http://www.qunlimited.com/rules.htm

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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by jonpin » Wed May 27, 2009 5:03 pm

cvdwightw wrote:
Shcool wrote:What was the correct answer? Bling? Baller? Hoo?
Furthermore, it appears as if :chip: disregarded the correct rules of protests in the final. Having never gone to NAC, I am under the impression that teams get one protest for the entire tournament.
The rules state:
General 13. Appeals regarding answers to questions may only be lodged immediately following the quarter in which the question was read. An appeal shall consist of the player and/or coach explaining the issue to the officials. The officials may then consult with the opposing coach as they see fit. Any team that does not wait until the end of the quarter or begins an appeal at the wrong time (i.e. interrupting the flow of a match) forfeits its right to appeal at the right time. A team is permitted a maximum of two question appeals per game.
The one-per-tournament rule is at the bottom:
1. In the event that a team is dissatisfied with an official decision, a "Supreme Court" panel of judges can be assembled to review the decision. A written appeal must be submitted to the Chief Judge of the disputed match within four hours of the match's completion. This Judge shall take the appeal, without disclosing which teams are involved, to the Executive Director (who is also Chief Writer). A judge with a conflict of interest in a contest may sit on this panel, but he shall disqualify himself from voting.

2. Teams are allowed one "Appeal to the Supreme Court" throughout the whole of the preliminary rounds (i.e. not one per match) and one throughout the course of the elimination rounds. If the opposing coach wishes to counter-appeal, it does not "use up" their appeal.
I think General rule #16 might be new; I don't think I've seen it before: "Silly names are not allowed on a contestant name plate."
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Kouign Amann » Wed May 27, 2009 5:29 pm

jonpin wrote:I think General rule #16 might be new; I don't think I've seen it before: "Silly names are not allowed on a contestant name plate."
Wait! No silliness allowed at the NAC?!?!
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by cvdwightw » Wed May 27, 2009 5:59 pm

Things I am confused on:

1. Mike Cheyne, according to the QBWiki your experience must have been at the notoriously terrible 2000 NAC. Were you unfortunate enough to encounter the blender question? Could you elaborate on your miserable experience in paragraph form, or would this be too emotionally catastrophic for you?

2. This whole physics question 30-point nonsense. Which of the following scenarios happened?
A. For some reason, the 5-point bonus question inexplicably did not have 5 listed as an alternative answer for 15/3. The game was then delayed while :chip: called a physicist to confirm that 15 divided by 3 equals five. After receiving confirmation, :chip: awarded the team 5 points for that answer and continued the bonus, in which the team subsequently picked up the 10 and 15.
B. Same as A, except :chip: did it at the end of the quarter.
C. Same as A, except that the protest was on something that a physicist (or a competent science person with the Internet or reference sources) would be necessary to rule on.
D. Same as C, except :chip: did it at the end of the quarter.
E. The problem was on the 15-point part, which the other team then rebounded by magically figuring out the answer on paper. Instead of deducting 15 points from the other team, :chip: just gave the team 30 points and did not give them a chance to answer the 20-point part.
F. Something even more bizarre.

3. Why there are specific rules regarding when a protest can be brought up. In most sane formats, the captain just says "protest," the moderator says "noted," and they discuss the issue at the appropriate time. Clearly, this is too difficult for NAC. Also, why the rule book does not allow for opposing players to be consulted.

4. :chip: 's apparent God-like control over point penalties. Also, whether :chip: is the judge, jury, and executioner on what constitutes a "silly" name, I mean, what happens if there's a kid with last name Batman and the team is using all surnames a la CBI?

5. The continued existence of the NAC.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Cheynem » Wed May 27, 2009 7:06 pm

Ah, yes, the 2000 NAC. No, I did not have the blender question. It's been a few years, but let's see what I can recall...

This tournament was at Pepperdine University in Malibu. We played four games over two days. The games were, if I recall correctly, not back to back either, which means you basically blew two whole days because the matches were spread out over the whole day. We only ended up having one real "touristy" day and we went to Universal Studios, where I saw the aforementioned ET and Waterworld attractions.

As for the tournament itself, I don't recall a lot of questions. I remember the tossups I mentioned before (Ralph Fiennes, audio clip of Unchained Melody), and I remember the terrible game show format of Chip mugging to nonexistent cameras and banally introducing us with Jeopardy-style "interesting facts." I don't remember a whole lot of specific details, but what I do recall does correspond with Mr. Egan's NAC report. I remember QuizNet a lot more and how that caused me week after week to shake my head in rueful anger.

It's a sad travesty that my high school never discovered anything other than Chip or crappy state questions until my junior year, thus depriving the two captains before me of an opportunity to play NAQT or PACE. I should at some point attempt to create a compendium of actual questions asked at high school tournaments I went to. For instance, I can honestly say I had to answer a bonus at a local tournament on the Dave Ketcham 1960's sitcom "Camp Runamauck." Because of this, it is forever engrained in my mind that the girls camp on that program was named "Camp Divine." I AM NOT MAKING THIS UP. (I don't know if that was Chip questions or not though)
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Tegan » Wed May 27, 2009 8:46 pm

Cheynem wrote:pain
Would PACE ever consider awarding something akin to the purple heart for quizbowl players permanently scarred by stuff like this?

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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by First Chairman » Wed May 27, 2009 11:38 pm

Tegan wrote:
Cheynem wrote:pain
Would PACE ever consider awarding something akin to the purple heart for quizbowl players permanently scarred by stuff like this?
Players perhaps. There are also the coaches who have all gotten screwed somehow by Chip.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by scquizbowl » Thu May 28, 2009 7:30 am

The scenario that came up was no. 1, as Jesuit protested, that they were the same, and Chip walked out of the room, called an expert on his cellphone, said the answer was right, and they then got the 10 and 15 point questions.

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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Sir Thopas » Thu May 28, 2009 8:03 am

First Chairman wrote:
Tegan wrote:
Cheynem wrote:pain
Would PACE ever consider awarding something akin to the purple heart for quizbowl players permanently scarred by stuff like this?
Players perhaps. There are also the coaches who have all gotten screwed somehow by Chip.
No, it's the coaches' choice to go. The kids are just strung along most of the time.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Cheynem » Thu May 28, 2009 10:10 am

In fairness to my coach, this was the only time we went to NAC, he realized it was less than great, and then discovered NAQT my junior year and PACE my senior year, actively taking us to tournaments a good deal away in order to play NAQT. And it wasn't like we as kids really had any idea what was going on either--my sophomore year, I couldn't have differentiated between NAC, HSNCT, and NSC.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Wild10 » Thu May 28, 2009 10:50 am

To be perfectly honest, I would never even consider competing at any other Nationals other than NAC. Especially at the High School level, Academic Team should be a fun experience, and the format of questions supplied by Qunlimited ensures that all students may enjoy competing. Any individual, or monkey, for that matter, can memorize and spew knowledge upon hearing key words. But I have never had more fun in High School then when competing at Nationals, and competing at the highest level, against the highest level teams.

There are simply numerous formats of High School Quizbowl, and to scorn teams because they prefer qunlimited questions to NAQT is simply shocking and dissapointing. And to say that the winner of NAC is not a National Champion is simply outrageous. Last year, Wilmington Charter finished second at NAQT Nationals. Where did they finish at NAC? Second as well.

Trying to compare the two formats is like trying to say that "rugby" teams are better than "football" teams. The competitions are simply DIFFERENT! Sure, some teams place quite well in both formats, but there is absolutely no reason to try to convince teams not to support qunlimited. Individuals are going out of their way to be nasty towards Qunlimited and Mr. Beall, a man I don't always agree with, but who I certainly respect.

In our 20 consecutive years competing at NAC, our team has probably had more protests go against us than any other team in the competition. But we move on. We understand and appreicate the difficulty in making decisions as a moderator, and will continue to support Mr. Beall and the NAC Nationals in the years to come, competing at the highest level against the best teams.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by vcuEvan » Thu May 28, 2009 11:19 am

Wild10 wrote:competing at the highest level against the best teams.
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by MLafer » Thu May 28, 2009 11:37 am

If anyone else is interested in the 2000 NAC, the qbwiki article is pretty good, including a primary source document written by myself:

http://www.doc-ent.com/qbwiki/index.php?title=2000_NAC

As for the blender question, I didn't actually play on it, but I was watching in the audience at the time. I think Ripley was one of the teams playing. Because of the vagaries of the NAC format, only two teams actually got to play on this particular question.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Sir Thopas » Thu May 28, 2009 11:39 am

Wild10 wrote:And to say that the winner of NAC is not a National Champion is simply outrageous. Last year, Wilmington Charter finished second at NAQT Nationals. Where did they finish at NAC? Second as well.
You've killed your own argument here—Wilmington Charter was objectively far, far, FAR better than the team they lost to. I can't find any directly comparative stats right now, but:
http://www.naqt.com/stats/team-performa ... m_id=13932
http://www.naqt.com/stats/team-performa ... am_id=7108

19 points per bonus vs. 27, disparate power counts, etc.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Cheynem » Thu May 28, 2009 11:46 am

Looking at the Malibu schedule, I note the following:

Our four games were on Thursday and Friday. THURSDAY--8:45 and 1:15. Enjoy waiting around after your 8:45 match. FRIDAY--9:30 and 7:30. A ten hour gap between rounds?!

Is the above post a joke?
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Wild10 » Thu May 28, 2009 11:53 am

Guy,

I certianly did not kill my argument. How can we say that Charter was better than Booker T? They lost! And here I am reading that Booker T was the 24th best team in the Nation. Well hold on a second! They beat Charter, arguably one of the best teams in the country. Booker T won! So they were the better team, meaning that NAC teams can certainly compete, and WIN against NAQT teams.

At some point, pure knowledge is not enough to get you anywhere. It is how you APPLY the knowledge.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Deviant Insider » Thu May 28, 2009 12:02 pm

The above post probably is serious. Even if it is not, there are many, many coaches who don't post on this board who agree with it.

The vast majority of coaches do not read qbwiki, so they are not aware of the plagiarism and poor quality of NAC. (If they do read, then they just figure it is the work of meddling kids.) Even coaches who attend are not aware of the issues, because many of them have not experienced top quality quizbowl, so they figure that what they have seen is perfectly normal. Some coaches, and it seems like the poster above is one, are not interested in top quality quizbowl, because it would involve entering matches that they know their team is going to lose.

There are also some students who would rather be subjected to the random whims of a blender question than spend their time learning. Many students and coaches, unfortunately, take the view that good teams merely "memorize and spew knowledge", without differentiating between what constitutes interesting and uninteresting knowledge.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Sir Thopas » Thu May 28, 2009 12:04 pm

Wild10 wrote:Guy,

I certianly did not kill my argument. How can we say that Charter was better than Booker T? They lost! And here I am reading that Booker T was the 24th best team in the Nation. Well hold on a second! They beat Charter, arguably one of the best teams in the country. Booker T won! So they were the better team, meaning that NAC teams can certainly compete, and WIN against NAQT teams.
No, no, no, your logic is supremely peccable. If every objective measure except for one (and there are many more examples) says that the competition isn't even close, then there is something wrong with the one outlier. That is exactly my point.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by JackGlerum » Thu May 28, 2009 12:54 pm

Wild10 wrote:To be perfectly honest, I would never even consider competing at any other Nationals other than NAC.
That's fine! I accept the fact that you enjoy NAC.
Wild10 wrote:Trying to compare the two formats is like trying to say that "rugby" teams are better than "football" teams. The competitions are simply DIFFERENT!
Indeed! NAC-type quizbowl and PACE-type quizbowl are different animals. I'm happy that you recognize this. What I'm struggling to understand is, if you acknowledge and accept that they are different and that some like one and some like the other, why are you calling me a
Wild10 wrote:monkey
because I enjoy something that you don't, namely pyramidal & academic quizbowl? It's unbelievably hypocritical.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by The King's Flight to the Scots » Thu May 28, 2009 1:02 pm

Wild10 wrote:
At some point, pure knowledge is not enough to get you anywhere. It is how you APPLY the knowledge.
Herein lies the problem. Is this statement true? Absolutely. Will quizbowl knowledge alone bring you a successful career, a loving family, or whatever else you're seeking in life? Obviously not. But it's not supposed to. As you will see if you browse some of the forums here, quizbowl is simply a test of acquired knowledge about the liberal arts, natural sciences, and occasional trash. While quizbowl will probably expose you to authors, composers, or artists you wouldn't have known otherwise, it is not meant to replace a formal education in any of those fields. Anything beyond pure fact recollection you must learn on your own: it is not tested in quizbowl. For example, I can play two of Bach's Inventions on my piano. Without intending to be arrogant, I consider that a valid accomplishment, one greater than simply learning a few facts about the Inventions. Should quizbowl award me points for that accomplishment? No, NO, NO, NO. Only if I have learned a few facts about the Inventions in the process of playing them.

Also, I fail to see how tossups about a blender reward applied knowledge.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Sir Thopas » Thu May 28, 2009 1:09 pm

ColJade wrote:Also, I fail to see how tossups about a blender reward applied knowledge.
I see SOMEONE is bitter that his soufflés always collapsed in home ec.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Tower Monarch » Thu May 28, 2009 1:21 pm

ColJade wrote:
Wild10 wrote:
At some point, pure knowledge is not enough to get you anywhere. It is how you APPLY the knowledge.
Herein lies the problem. Is this statement true? Absolutely. Will quizbowl knowledge alone bring you a successful career, a loving family, or whatever else you're seeking in life? Obviously not. But it's not supposed to. ....Also, I fail to see how tossups about a blender reward applied knowledge.
See, this is what I found messed up with the posts here. There are some quizbowlers who have accomplished some pretty great, practical things. No aural-into-oral academic competition is going to measure these skills effectively, but guess what? Any book on intelligence testing or skills testing (I've got a couple right here) will describe correlations between in-depth practical knowledge and in-depth recall knowledge. You come into the discussion saying you want the former to be rewarded and yet you bring to the table a format that I have never seen demonstrate the latter. Do you understand what a lead-in accomplishes? Clearly not, or you would understand why a question with a well-written one (rather than a whirlwind tour of some scientist's life) will differentiate the top players-- based on deep knowledge, which will roughly measure "practical" knowledge. Case in point, Matt is more likely to get an Inventions buzz on pyramidal questions than I, who have only heard of this as list knowledge, am. A qunlimited question might say something like "The invention is primarily the work of this composer. He also wrote 15 sinfoniettas as exercises for his son, Wilhelm Friedemann." (I would really like to see this come up as worded since I roughly copied it from Wikipedia).
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by jonpin » Thu May 28, 2009 1:28 pm

Wild10 wrote:Guy,

I certianly did not kill my argument. How can we say that Charter was better than Booker T? They lost! And here I am reading that Booker T was the 24th best team in the Nation. Well hold on a second! They beat Charter, arguably one of the best teams in the country. Booker T won! So they were the better team, meaning that NAC teams can certainly compete, and WIN against NAQT teams.

At some point, pure knowledge is not enough to get you anywhere. It is how you APPLY the knowledge.
You're using one head-to-head game in a format Wilmington almost never plays outside of this to overturn a year's worth of evidence. To use a sports analogy that you might find useful even if the rest of the board dislikes them: which team was better, the 2007-08 Giants or the 2007-08 Patriots? Throughout the year, the Patriots were statistically the far better team. But the Giants won so they must be better! But wait, the Patriots also beat the Giants, so THEY must be better!

This kind of transitive head-to-head logic would imply that no team was best at PACE, because every team was beaten by another team. That would be absurd.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Louis XIV and Twenty Million Henchmen » Thu May 28, 2009 1:44 pm

Wild10 wrote:I certainly did not kill my argument. How can we say that Charter was better than Booker T? They lost!
On questions that variously…
  • punish deep knowledge and "hose" you if you buzz in early
    are so obvious that everybody knows the answer and whoever hits the buzzer first wins
    aren't about anything worth knowing (The sound of the blender!)
…and a distribution vastly different (more trash) than that of any other quizbowl format.

I wouldn't call it football and rugby; I'd call it real football and a game I'll call FootBeall, which would feature stuff like a field with a randomly-shifting slope; a dude standing in the middle of the game giving commentary and acting as an obstacle to the players; a third quarter where each team shoots ten field goals at a distance determined by that dude; and a Golden Snitch.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Tegan » Thu May 28, 2009 1:46 pm

Wild10 wrote:... and the format of questions supplied by Qunlimited ensures that all students may enjoy competing. Any individual, or monkey, for that matter, can memorize and spew knowledge upon hearing key words. But I have never had more fun in High School then when competing at Nationals, and competing at the highest level, against the highest level teams.
Omar,

I once thought as you do .... as a matter of fact, I was so taken aback by what people were saying, I took it upon myself to actually see this with my own eyes.

Certainly , if you enjoy this format, who is to question that. However, I must disagree with you statement "and the format of questions supplied by Qunlimited ensures that all students may enjoy competing." As you can see, there are plenty of people who have played these questions, and do not find them enjoyable. I might be misinterpreting you, but you might be saying that these questions cater to a larger percentage of the high school population (not just the elite teams). I am not sure that I agree with that, but if we take that as fact, then I must certainly disagree that the NAC attracts "competing against the highest level, against the highest level." Having attended all NAC, PACE, NAQT, and Panasonic, I would rank the average talent as: PACE, NAQT, NAC, Panasonic .... though if we look at just the best teams: PACE and NAQT come out about even, with Panasonic coming third, and NAC a distant fourth. Having attended the NAC, I never saw a team that I thought would finish with a winning record at PACE of NAQT. True, I probably missed a few, but overall, I don't think I'm far from the mark.

>>>There are simply numerous formats of High School Quizbowl, and to scorn teams because they prefer qunlimited questions to NAQT is simply shocking and dissapointing. And to say that the winner of NAC is not a National Champion is simply outrageous. Last year, Wilmington Charter finished second at NAQT Nationals. Where did they finish at NAC? Second as well. <<<

I agree .... and overall, it is not the format that people have the most problem with. It is the overall quality of the questions, and the way the tournament is run. In an attempt to seemingly "have fun", I think the tournament officials forget how much money is being spent and fundraised by these teams. I have heard comments that were overtly sexist and overtly tasteless made by tournament officials. I suspect that they were made thoughtlessly, but when you are in the business of working with high school students, you need to be far more careful. Given the frequency of problems regarding fairness, and in some cases fraud, it starts to become more difficult ot belive these are simply "accidents".

>>>Trying to compare the two formats is like trying to say that "rugby" teams are better than "football" teams. The competitions are simply DIFFERENT! Sure, some teams place quite well in both formats, but there is absolutely no reason to try to convince teams not to support qunlimited. Individuals are going out of their way to be nasty towards Qunlimited and Mr. Beall, a man I don't always agree with, but who I certainly respect. <<<

True again .... but then again, people who makes films about football and rugby do not claim that the teams who win on film are legitimate champions. When the NAC claims to crown a legitimate national quizbowl champion on par with PACE or NAQT .... I think this is where people have a problem. I agree that the NAC is all about fun and games and drama, but it is more about that than crowning a legitimate academic champion.

If this is what you and your team wants, far be it from me to convince you otherwise. However, my (and a lot of other people) have had negative experiences with Mr. Beall. Maybe your team has been lucky to not been so harmed by this, or maybe doesn't know that it has come to harm. In either case, as long as you are making an informed choice, you are fully entitled to your opinion, as are the people who have come to harm before.

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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by evilmonkey » Thu May 28, 2009 3:04 pm

*Grumble* I just spent an hour writing out a response to this and only wrote it in the box and then my login had timed out so I lost it, and I don't have the time to retype it, so I'll just post the gist of it:

Despite the fact that you claim to not have an open mind, I will try to change it. I played both NAQT and QU in high school, so you can be sure that am speaking from experience.
Wild10 wrote: Especially at the High School level, Academic Team should be a fun experience.
I agree with this statement. In fact, this is the BASIS of the argument that NAC is not legitimate. Academic competitions are centered around the idea that the team that knows more should win, although since it is a competition they will not always win. However, in general, NAQT and PACE do a better job at rewarding knowledge than the NAC. If your attitude is that "Academic team should be fun in spite of knowing things".

Reasons why NAC is not legitimate (Specific documentation on the qbwiki):

1. Prevalence of non-academic knowledge.
A. Tossups on things that are trivial: The infamous blender question, Woody Allen's instrument, the face scaled on Mt. Everest, etc.

B. An unreasonably high proportion of popular culture questions. The A in NAC stands for Academic. NAQT gets criticized for this, and they have less pop culture than the NAC.

C. Riddles: "Which four former presidents are not buried in the United States?" "If a rooster lays an egg on a roof, which way does it roll?"

For these reasons, most games end up becoming coin flips.


2. Questions/Procedures which penalize knowledge.
A. Left-Turn questions: They start out talking about one thing, and (after inducing a buzz from a knowledgeable team) then ask about something tangentially related.

B. Whats on the Paper and the Protest Rule: Refusal to accept correct answers because they aren't listed on the page. Legitimate tournaments are concerned first and foremost with fair results, which includes rewarding teams that actually have knowledge.

C. Questions that begin (or end) with "Why?": While these are, in fact, academic in nature, point B makes these questions an exercise in reading the question writer's mind – what exactly did he/she list as the answer. The problems are compounded when the question writer has incomplete knowledge of the subject, or the issues regarding it are more complex than the answer that is listed, and so an answer that is actually correct is not listed. (Example: "Why did WWI begin?" Honestly, I can think of several answers to this, ranging from a sentence to a full essay)

For these reasons (and a few others that I have chosen to exclude for the sake of brevity), the NAC is not a legitimate championship.

If you honestly believe that competing at the NAC is competing at a high level, compare PACE-NSC 2008 questions with NAC questions, while keeping in mind that the top teams will answer 90% of the PACE questions, with most of the tossups being answered before the words for ten points.
Individuals are going out of their way to be nasty towards Qunlimited and Mr. Beall, a man I don't always agree with, but who I certainly respect.
This is the other major point regarding NAC and Mr. Beall, and the one that gets people like Matt Weiner the most riled up. It is also a reason to not attend NAC, regardless of views of its legitimacy.

3. Chip Beall and the NAC engage in unethical or unsavory practices.

A. Plagiarizing questions from other sources. I don't have the links to documentation, but it is out there. NAC plagiarizes from a variety of sources, including Jeopardy and CBI.

B. Giving teams tossups/60 second rounds on their state. I mean, this happens in NAQT or PACE, but it is known before the tournament that most teams will be playing each round. Therefore, on the off chance that there is a geo tossup on "New York", there will be around 30 to 50 games played on that set that do not involve New York teams. When it happens at NAC, then there are one or two games not involving New York teams. Moreover, the fact that the moderators at NAC are given a prepared statement to read when this happens only heightens the sense of suspicion. Having a 60-second round on a state involved in a game is just ridiculous – the idea that in a game with 1000 total points, 100 would come from knowledge of your state (without a similar opportunity for the other team) smacks of playing favorites. Since the NAC sets the schedule ahead of time, it would be fairly simple to replace such questions.

C. Unprofessional behavior – interjecting inappropriate comments or gestures (the "Republican Fat-cat Friends" incident or the Whitney Houston Crack Pipe incident). Or the Charter incident in 2008: "Before a 2008 match in Chicago involving Wilmington Charter, Chip Beall introduced the team as having finished second at last weeks "junior nationals" (a comment referring to finishing second at the NAQT HSNCT two weeks earlier). The comment was taken as a derogatory and classless sleight at Wilmington's accomplishment and the HSNCT as a whole." (Taken from the qbwiki)

D. Outright Fraud – The Grand Junction incident
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by cvdwightw » Thu May 28, 2009 3:09 pm

Omar,

Thank you for sharing your thoughts on NAC. Hopefully we can get into a reasonable discussion of this, unlike last year's trainwreck.

There are many reasons one might choose to go to NAC. These include:
  • They like :chip:
    They like the format
    They like the questions
    They like the (frankly, diluted) field
    They like the location
There are many reasons one might choose not to go to NAC. These include:
  • Ethical issues
    A smaller, diluted field (Each of NAC's individual sites is less than the size of this year's NSC)
    Only playing 6 prelim games
    Single-elimination playoff matches
    They don't like the questions
Whether or not you agree with the people on this board that tell you don't go to NAC, you cannot rebut the following about the NAC:
  • There are multiple documented instances of plagiarism at all levels of QU
    At one point, a team that won a preliminary phase of the NAC was declared ineligible and forfeited all preliminary games because they were not willing to send a :chip: -approved team to the finals.
    At one point, there was a tossup asking a team to identify a blender from an audio clip
    At one point, there was a 60-second round asking teams to identify ten pieces of music from six-second clips
    At one point, :chip: referred to NAQT HSNCT (the largest and arguably most competitive national tournament) as a "Junior National"
    At one point, there was a tossup asking for teams to give an answer "According to Wikipedia"
    :chip: has a history of ignoring his own tournament rules as he sees fit (cf. the physics bonus resolution delaying the game, in clear violation of the rules)
    Despite claims to test "significa, not trivia" and to be "heavy on the academic," a significant number of questions on each tournament writeup have absolutely nothing to do with a topic's academic significance
Keep in mind that I have never been to NAC, and my entire experience has been from firsthand accounts of people who have been there and the tournament writeups. Therefore, I am not entirely closed-minded on this issue. However, there are multiple issues with your first post that I completely disagree with.
You wrote:Academic Team should be a fun experience, and the format of questions supplied by Qunlimited ensures that all students may enjoy competing.
I agree with the first part of that sentence. However, I do not understand how not being given credit for a right answer because "You didn't sing it" or "You weren't physically recognized" makes students have fun competing. You want to win games and score points, I get it. Therefore rules need to be in place that maximize fairness so that the best team wins. There are multiple documented instances of :chip: arbitrarily disallowing answers, and I do not see how this is fun for anyone.
You wrote:Any individual, or monkey, for that matter, can memorize and spew knowledge upon hearing key words.
This quote is completely off base. Most individuals who participate in quizbowl and who study to get good at it do so because they love learning. If you want, we can persuade Jonathan Magin to lecture to you about the development of one's cognitive map. Academic, pyramidal quizbowl is not about monkeys pressing a button when they hear a buzzword. It is about learning new clues and integrating them into your cognitive map and hey, if it comes up, free 10 points. I have no idea whether this actually happens at NAC, but one-line questions and hose questions make it very difficult for me to believe that this happens to the same degree that it does in other forms of quizbowl.
You wrote:And to say that the winner of NAC is not a National Champion is simply outrageous. Last year, Wilmington Charter finished second at NAQT Nationals. Where did they finish at NAC? Second as well.
You are giving a single data point to support your (frankly, erroneous) conclusion. I find it absolutely impossible to believe that the NAC champion demonstrates the greatest breadth and depth of knowledge of any team in America, largely due to the number of questions that do not differentiate teams based on knowledge but rather on buzzer speed, lateral thinking, and arbitrary :chip: decisions. I can believe that the winner of NSC or HSNCT has the greatest breadth and depth of knowledge of any team in America. If you want NAC champions to be "national" champions, then please explain to me how NAC tests both depth and breadth of knowledge better than pyramidal quizbowl.
You wrote:The competitions are simply DIFFERENT! Sure, some teams place quite well in both formats, but there is absolutely no reason to try to convince teams not to support qunlimited. Individuals are going out of their way to be nasty towards Qunlimited and Mr. Beall, a man I don't always agree with, but who I certainly respect.
Yes, they are different. This is the same reason that, at the college level, people stopped labeling CBI as "quizbowl." At this point in evolutionary history, modern quizbowl has diverged so much from NAC (notably, in that they have taken NAC's mottos of "significa, not trivia" and "heavy on the academic" and used it as a question model rather than an advertisement) that it is frankly impossible to call it quizbowl. We are not going out of our way to be nasty towards :chip: . Rather, we are pointing out several issues that are inconsistent with his business statement or are ethically indefensible, and calling him out on it. We do that with NAQT. We do that with PACE. The difference is that NAQT and PACE are far more agreeable to work towards a more enjoyable experience for the players. Other people's firsthand accounts tell me that this is not the primary goal at NAC.
You wrote:We understand and appreicate the difficulty in making decisions as a moderator
I am, according to most people who have commented on my moderating, a good moderator. I would submit that I am at least as good as the average NAC moderator, and likely far better. I am also one of those monkeys that presses a button because I know things, and consider myself a pretty good judge of when a given answer is correct. However, I believe I would find it near-impossible to make decisions at NAC, for the simple reason that many of the questions would be impossible to make a good decision on. Simply put, if the questions were well-written, then there would be no reason for moderators to have to make decisions more than, e.g., whether Zorn's Lemma is equivalent to the axiom of choice (it is, for all intents and purposes), or whether J-J coupling is the same as Russell-Saunders coupling (it isn't). However, asking a moderator to determine whether an answer to a question beginning "why" or "how" is close enough to a correct answer is difficult at best and impossible at worst (especially if there are multiple correct answers).

I guess the overall point is that not a single NAC supporter has been able to accurately justify why they go to NAC other than "we have fun." To which we say, "you might also have fun at these other nationals that don't have ethical baggage and have questions that better test breadth and depth of knoweldge." NAC supporters then attack us for our devotion to "the pyramid," to which we calmly explain how a pyramidal question better tests knowledge and makes the game more fun (because most competent players will be able to get the question at the end). Inevitably, this degenerates into a trainwreck with people on both sides throwing ad hominem attacks.

I would highly advise you to solidify your position with concrete, well-supported arguments before Matt Weiner gets into this thread.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-TN) » Thu May 28, 2009 4:26 pm

Omar, just so we can understand better where you are coming from, how many:
Chip Beall tournaments
NAQT tournaments
HSAPQ and other pyramidal tournaments
and house written and no-pyramidal tournaments have you gone to in your playing career?
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Wild10 » Thu May 28, 2009 4:36 pm

A couple things...

One, that Physics protest is not a violation of Chip's rules. The Westchester Rule dictates that for protests during the second quarter of a game, (the bonus round), the protest needs to be handled immediately, as it can effect which team gets a bonus, whether a team gets the chance to steal a bonus, etc.

Two, the main reason that we prefer qunlimited tournaments is the format. We find the four quarter format to be much more engaging. There are the tossups, but also the bonuses, available for both teams with steals, and the 60 second categories, which we don't find to be unfair.

In high school, I would say that I have gone to about 10 NAQT tournaments, and NAC Nationals three times. We play in a league that uses qunlimited questions. I have also been to tournaments that have taken questions from KMO.
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by dxdtdemon » Thu May 28, 2009 4:41 pm

mcn46 wrote:
Wild10 wrote:I certainly did not kill my argument. How can we say that Charter was better than Booker T? They lost!
On questions that variously…
  • punish deep knowledge and "hose" you if you buzz in early
    are so obvious that everybody knows the answer and whoever hits the buzzer first wins
    aren't about anything worth knowing (The sound of the blender!)
…and a distribution vastly different (more trash) than that of any other quizbowl format.

I wouldn't call it football and rugby; I'd call it real football and a game I'll call FootBeall, which would feature stuff like a field with a randomly-shifting slope; a dude standing in the middle of the game giving commentary and acting as an obstacle to the players; a third quarter where each team shoots ten field goals at a distance determined by that dude; and a Golden Snitch.
This deserves a Stingray nomination.
Jonathan Graham
Beavercreek HS 1999-2003, Ohio State 2003-2007, Wright State (possibly playing)2012-2015
moderator/scorekeeper at some tournaments in Ohio, and sometimes elsewhere
"Ohio has a somewhat fractured quizbowl circuit, with a few small pockets of intense competition (like in Mahoning County) and with the rest scattered around the state."-Chris Chiego

Tegan
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Tegan » Thu May 28, 2009 4:55 pm

Omar,

Reading these last few posts reminds me of perhaps the most compelling reason I would never take a team near the NAC:

When I attended PACE, NAQT, and even Panasonic, the players and their coaches were treated with upmost respect. The tournament personnel treated people like they had achieved something in arriving there, were treated like dignitaries, were never spoken down to .... in short you got the impression that the players and coaches were the most important people in the room all of the time.

When I have attended the NAC, I get the opposite impression ..... during time outs, the moderators would intone on like they were on TV and playing to the audience .... I got the impression that we (the players, the audience, the coaches) were all there for their (the moderators) enjoyment, or to fulfill their fantasy of playing a gameshow host. It should always be that the tournament personnel are there for the players, and never vice versa. I saw players treated very poorly by a few moderators .... laughed at when they couldn't answer a riddle ... singled out because of their gender, etc. Certianly any moderator can make a thoughtless remark or have a bad day ..... but there has been too much of a pattern of this type of behavior.

I also have to tell you that I have had my team invited to the NAC in years where we did not necessarily have a good team (and our team was not the only team to get "cold called" like this. I don't know how many teams show up for the NAC, and don't really deserve to be there, but the fact that there are teams invited who have accomplished nothing says something as to how much the NAC personnel balance wanting more money vs. putting on a high quality tournament. I could be wrong about this, but, again, this is in following with Mr. Beall doing things that makes people suspect he is up to no good.

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Cheynem
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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by Cheynem » Thu May 28, 2009 5:00 pm

Omar, I wonder if you might enjoy the PACE format, which also has multiple periods and "steals" on bonuses.

I can honestly say though the 60-second round (or "LIGHTNING ROUND") is an abomination in my opinion. Playing a dominant half against a team in high school only to be just steamrolled by a kid with a quick buzzer finger who wandered into a category he knows is completely not cool. I did, however, compile a fine collection of literary first lines after having that category come up way too many times (take THAT, "A Separate Peace").

Panasonic actually treats you like a king (or treated, I should say), what with the free food, Disney-related events, and the like.
Mike Cheyne
Formerly U of Minnesota

"You killed HSAPQ"--Matt Bollinger

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Re: NAC schedule info/tournament thread

Post by cvdwightw » Thu May 28, 2009 5:14 pm

Wild10 wrote:Two, the main reason that we prefer qunlimited tournaments is the format. We find the four quarter format to be much more engaging. There are the tossups, but also the bonuses, available for both teams with steals, and the 60 second categories, which we don't find to be unfair.
This seems eminently reasonable, provided that none of the 60 second rounds procures an undue advantage to either team. For instance, if two of the categories are "Asian History" and "Italian Opera," and the opposing team has players with specific, known (at least to the tournament directors) interests in these categories, then it would constitute an undue advantage. Since only somewhere around 8 teams hear any given category round, it looks awfully suspicious when a category perfectly matching a team's known interest shows up, especially (see Frankel's account of the St. John's vs. Chaska 2000 playoff match) if it shows up mysteriously.

I would encourage you to look at HSAPQ's 2008 Four Quarter Format set (hsapq.com/sample.html) and see how this compares with qunlimited questions. This set encompasses all of the benefits of the four quarter format (tossups, bonuses, directed rounds) except that the category rounds are too long for just 60 seconds (probably need a 100 or 120-second round), with none of the other problems we perceive with the NAC. If there were a national tournament using the four quarter format but with pyramidal tossups on largely academic subjects, no (real or perceived) ethical baggage, and more than 8 teams playing at a time, would you consider attending that tournament over NAC?
Dwight Wynne
socalquizbowl.org
UC Irvine 2008-2013; UCLA 2004-2007; Capistrano Valley High School 2000-2003

"It's a competition, but it's not a sport. On a scale, if football is a 10, then rowing would be a two. One would be Quiz Bowl." --Matt Birk on rowing, SI On Campus, 10/21/03

"If you were my teammate, I would have tossed your ass out the door so fast you'd be emitting Cerenkov radiation, but I'm not classy like Dwight." --Jerry

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