[CUA Office of Public Affairs]                                                                        


Oct. 15, 2001


#1 Ranked CUA Debate Team Hosts Capital City Debates Tournament

This week Catholic University’s number-one ranked debate team will host the Fifth Annual Capital City Debates tournament for varsity speakers from universities all over the United States. The university’s debaters, who won several tournament and national championships earlier this year, also will sponsor the Washington Fall Classic, a competition for junior varsity and novice teams.

Both nationally competitive tournaments will take place Friday, Oct. 19, through Sunday, Oct. 21, at various times and locations on CUA’s campus, located at 620 Michigan Avenue, N.E., Washington, D.C.

More than 140 university teams will compete in the tournaments, including other top-ranked groups from Harvard University, Georgetown University, Dartmouth University, Wake Forest University, Michigan State University, the University of Michigan and Emory University. Teams will be debating the federal government’s relationship to American Indians. The tournaments will offer six rounds of preliminary competition: two on Friday, Oct. 19; four on Saturday, Oct. 20; and elimination rounds on Sunday, Oct. 21.

Catholic University’s debate program has had a stellar record since resurrecting in 1998 after a 20-year hiatus. In its first season, the fledgling squad scored a national ranking of fourth among 176 college and university teams.

Last spring, the winning team was ranked number one in the nation by the university-level American Debate Association, a position it still holds. The group’s successes have turned into a recruiting tool for the university, attracting top high school debaters from around the country, said CUA Debate Team Director Ron Bratt.

"We are very proud of our students," Bratt said. "Their hard work and determination has paid off."

This is the second year in a row the CUA Debate Team has hosted the Capital City Debates, informally known by debate teams as the Cap City Tournament. Participants in last year’s event were so impressed with CUA organizers, they thought the university should continue to host the tournament, said Ross Smith, the Wake Forest University debate director who started the Capital City Debates with Washington, D.C., attorney Scott Segal six years ago. More than 380 people are expected to attend this year’s jointly held tournaments.  

For more information on the CUA Debate Team, go to http://debate.cua.edu/.    





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Revised: March 27, 2001

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The Catholic University of America,
Office of Public Affairs.