Baylor Debate Team Rises To No. 3 National Ranking

News Photo 4968
Seated in Front, L to R: John Cook, Kendall Kaut, Dustin Darby, Grant Nelson. Back Row, L to R: Dr. Matt Gerber (Director), Rachel Ford (Asst. Coach), Alex McVey (Asst. Coach), Eli Bacon, Katelin Morey, Ashley Morgan, Kyle Vint (Asst. Coach), Amanda Luppes (Asst. Coach), Sam Hogan, Nathan Ford, Garrett Morrell, Dr. Scott Varda (Associate Director).
Oct. 14, 2010

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Baylor University's debate team - the Glenn R. Capp Debate Forum - has achieved a No. 3 national ranking based on its performance at several recent competitions.

Baylor's national ranking is based on its performance against other top college debate programs. The national rankings are calculated on a system similar to how college football teams are ranked in the BCS, which reflect the overall strength and depth of the program. Baylor currently is ranked ahead of debate rivals such as Texas, Kansas, Emory, Michigan, Oklahoma and Harvard.

The Bears recently competed at three consecutive college debate competitions. The team opened the 2010-11 season with a trip to Gonzaga University in Spokane, Wash. The debate team of John Cook, a junior international studies major from Winfield, Kan., and Ashley Morgan, a junior international studies major from Omaha, Neb., made it to the quarterfinals, defeating teams from Northwestern, Southern California, Whitman and UT-San Antonio along the way.

The following weekend, Baylor sent five individual debate teams to a tournament at Georgia State University to compete against 160 other college debate teams. The Baylor team of Nate Ford, a senior economics and international studies major from Corsicana, and Kendall Kaut, a sophomore political science major from Olathe, Kan., posted a 5-2 record, defeating teams from Wake Forest, Georgia and Dartmouth, before falling to top-ranked Northwestern in the elimination debates.

Finally, Baylor traveled to a tournament at Wichita State University, where the team of Grant Nelson, a junior political science major from Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and highly-recruited freshman Katelin Morey, a neuroscience major from Hutchinson, Kan., made it to the quarterfinals, defeating teams from Kansas, North Texas and Missouri State.

Baylor is a perennial powerhouse in intercollegiate debate, having won three national championships (1975, 1987 and 1989) and appeared in the "Final Four" an additional nine times. Statistics for intercollegiate debate are calculated and updated weekly throughout the season at

Baylor will host the British National Debate Team at 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 22, in Castellaw Communications Center, Room 101, for a public debate on immigration policy.

The Glenn R. Capp Debate Forum is directed by Dr. Matt Gerber, assistant professor of communication studies, and Dr. Scott Varda, assistant professor of communication studies. The team is assisted by graduate student coaches Rachel Ford, Amanda Luppes, Alex McVey and Kyle Vint.

Media contact: Lori Fogleman, director of media communications, (254) 710-6275

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