Wednesday, January 2, 2019 - 10:21am
By:
Alan Flurry

The Georgia Debate Union finished the fall semester ranked as the top ranked varsity debate team in the country according to both the American Debate Association and National Debate Tournament varsity rankings. The team is ranked third in the Cross Examination Debate Association Rankings.  

The rankings are based on a points-based system whereby individual two-person teams from a university or college accumulate points based off of their wins/losses over the course of a tournament weekend. Georgia Debate Union teams finished in the top three at every major tournament it attended in the fall, including those at Georgia State University, the University of Kentucky, Gonzaga University, and Wake Forest University.

And for the second year in a row, the two-person team of Advait Ramanan and [Schwarzman Scholar] Swapnil Agrawal was invited to compete at the prestigious Dartmouth Round Robin at Dartmouth College.  The Dartmouth Round Robin is an invitation-only competition featuring the top 7 two-person debate teams in the country.  The other invitees for 2019 include teams from Harvard University, the University of California-Berkeley, Emory University, the University of Kentucky, Dartmouth College, and the University of Oklahoma.  The Round Robin will take place January 18 to January 21.  

In the spring semester, teams representing the Georgia Debate Union will be attending tournaments at Georgetown University, Indiana University, the US Naval Academy, Northwestern University, and Emory University.  

The Georgia Debate Union will host the American Debate Association national championship tournament March 8-10, 2019 in Athens.  Teams will also attend the National Debate Tournament, college debate's NCAA basketball tournament equivalent, at the University of Minnesota in late March. Two teams compromised of four UGA seniors - Advait Ramanan and Swapnil Agrawal and their teammates Nathan Rice and Johnnie Stupek - have solid chances to win one or both tournaments this spring.  

"It is the team's ultimate goal that UGA win a national debate championship in 2019," said head coach Hays Watson. "We are hopeful about our chances in the spring and we continue to be grateful for the support that UGA Student Affairs, Franklin College, the President's Office, and the UGA Foundation provide the team, support that enables our talented undergraduates to compete against the very best college debaters in the country."

Best of luck to the team this as they continue to take UGA to new heights in competitive debate. 

Image: The debate team in preparation for a trip to Gonzaga in October 2018, courtesy of the Athens Banner-Herald.