Baylor College Bowl Team To Compete For National Title

News Photo 3396
(L to R) - Baylor's College Bowl Regional Champions: Garrett Phillips, Stephanie Bialko, Seth Boutin, John Solter, Erik Ellis, and Dr. Brent Froberg (coach).
March 22, 2006

Contact: Lori Fogleman (254) 710-6275

After sweeping through the Region 12 tournament in February, Baylor University's College Bowl team will compete for the national title April 21-23 at the University of Hartford in Connecticut. This marks the second time in three years that Baylor has advanced to the College Bowl national tournament.

Baylor's team is composed of team captain Seth Paul Boutin, a senior University Scholar from Keithville, La.; John Solter, a junior entrepreneurship/finance major from Prairie Village, Kan.; Erik Ellis, a senior University Scholar from Catoosa, Okla.; Stephanie Bialko, a junior anthropology major from Dumont, N.J.; and Garrett Phillips, a senior University Scholar from Round Rock. The team is coached by Dr. Brent M. Froberg, a lecturer in classics who competed in College Bowl himself when he was a student at Indiana University.

For decades, College Bowl - known as "The Varsity Sport of the Mind" - has provided the arena for the fastest minds in school to demonstrate their great skills under the fire of varsity competition. The world-famous game of questions and answers played by two teams of competing students was first featured on the NBC radio network from 1953-57, and then on TV as the "GE College Bowl" from 1959-70.

In 1977, College Bowl in conjunction with the Association of College Unions International (ACUI), organized official competition at the campus, regional and national championship levels. The first College Bowl National Championship Tournament and World's Championship were held in June of 1978, won by Stanford and a team of British all-stars, respectively.

With 15 teams competing, the Region 12 College Bowl tournament was one of the largest in all of the 15 regions. The competition featured a modified round-robin format with a seven-team division and an eight-team division. Each team in a division played all of the other teams in its division, and at the end of the round-robin, the top two teams in each division played a four-team double elimination tournament to determine this year's champion.

The Baylor squad rolled undefeated through the regional tournament in Houston, outscoring teams from Midwestern State, SMU, Texas A&M-Kingsville, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, Rice, Arkansas and Harding University in the first part of the competition. In the double-elimination round, Baylor defeated Harding University 330-190, Rice 330-90 and Harding again 285-245 for the championship.

Solter led balanced scoring from the Baylor team with all players ranking high in individual statistics.

"This team plays exceptionally well together and has an excellent sense of anticipation when it comes to recalling specific information quickly from a wide variety of specific academic disciplines and areas of general knowledge," Froberg said. "They are extremely quick. It astonishes me."

Baylor, as well as 14 other regional champions and a wild card team (selected by random draw among the second place regional teams), will compete in the National Championship Tournament. The main tournament is a full round robin, with games to be played Friday night and all day on Saturday. The NCT playoff format is a four-team double-elimination, which will be held on Sunday.

College Bowl is organized on three levels. Each school's Campus Program (CP) features a Campus Tournament open to all students. The best players from each school (four players and an alternate, with a limit of one graduate student) compete in the Regional Championship Tournament.

The Association of College Unions International (ACUI) has been College Bowl's educational partner since 1976. ACUI provides significant volunteer leadership in the overall management of the College Bowl Program. ACUI coordinates the planning and execution of the National Championship Tournament (NCT) with the College Bowl Company.

Looking for more news from Baylor University?