5 Teams on the Decline

By Ron Zyhaus

Okay, this list is probably the most complicated one so far. The best way that I can explain it is that these are five teams that will be worse than they were last year. It’s not some sort of monologue about how programs are going in general; just from last year to this. The list starts with teams that won’t be that much worse to those who will be just a shadow of what they were last year.
Also, my next article will be slightly less pessimistic (you always choose to hear the bad news before the good, right?) than this one. We’ll look at 5 teams on the rise. Anyway, after they read this article, a few teams will have some good motivational fodder.

5. Woodside:
Let me start by saying that I think Woodside will have another great season. They still have one of the country’s best quizzers in Jeremy Barker and a good supporting cast around him. Last year, they won Nationals and finished the year as our highest ranked team. I don’t think that they will achieve either of those this year though, and that’s the definition of decline—not being as good as you were previously. First, they lost John Borkert. Second, when you are the best team from the year before, everyone else will be trying to knock them off that pedestal. No more will teams let them battle it out for a middle, everyone will be trying to knock them out. Third, and most importantly, the cream of the crop has gotten better. Old Paths is going to have five outstanding quizzers instead of just their normal three. FBCCF gains one of the best quizzers in the nation to their high school team. And the list goes on. Woodside will be one of the best five teams this year. Just not in the top one.

4. Capitol City:
I’ve already told you all this before in my previous articles, but I expect a slightly worse Capitol City team this year. I like Felicia Burdette a lot, but I don’t think that she is quite the quizzer that a Jeremy Barker or Jonathan Bishop is. What I mean is that I don’t think that she can carry a team completely by herself, and I don’t think that Capitol City will have quite the supporting cast that they’ve had in years past. They won’t be bad, but don’t expect them to win any big tournaments.

3. Tri-Cities:
Tri-Cities seems to be a one good year-one bad year type of program. This year, they are on the bad-year side of the cycle. They surprised everyone with a very strong performance at AACS Nationals, but don’t expect them to do that again. They overachieved last year, and I expect them to come back down to earth this year.

2. Valley:
Valley is a difficult team to predict. With the quizzers they have returning, they have the chance to be really good or to really stink. Their team probably graduated the most in terms of quizzing talent, but they still have some in Amanda Runions. If my expectations are correct, expect them to be competing with Capitol City and Tri-Cities for like 7th, 8th, or 9th best team this year.

1. Faith (MI):
Faith may fall completely off of the map this year. They lost the face of their program and best quizzer, David Marriott. He was the heart and soul of their team. I expect them to be moderately competitive, but I don’t think that they will either be causing the elite teams to lose much sleep or being in our top 10 all year.

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