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Baylor Law Hosts First-ever $10,000 Competition

June 16, 2010

Representatives from 16 other law schools competed at Baylor Law School during the first week in June -- with one winner, Jeffrey Goodman of Temple University School of Law, emerging as the nation's Top Gun.

Baylor Law conducted the first-ever Top Gun Mock Trial Competition, a new mock trial tournament unlike any other in the nation. Individual students represented law schools from all over the nation, such as Georgetown University and Pepperdine University. Participants did not receive the details of the mock case they argued until a mere 24 hours before the competition began, and the winner was awarded $10,000.

The competition was sponsored by the law firm Naman Howell Smith and Lee, PLLC, which has offices in the Texas cities of Austin, Fort Worth, Harker Heights, Temple and Waco. Organizers say the event was designed to provide a venue for schools with strong trial advocacy programs to go head-to-head with one another. Baylor, as the organizing institution, did not compete.

"We saw a need for a new type of competition that provides a forum to see the very best mock trial competitors," said Gerald Powell, BA '74, JD '77, the Abner V. McCall Professor of Evidence at Baylor Law School. "The Top Gun Mock Trial Competition gives law students the chance to go up against the very best of their peers, and gives all of us an opportunity to see the most experienced and talented law students in the country."

The Honorable Priscilla Owen, BA '76, JD '77, judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, presided over the finals.

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