Athens NYC Results

OK, now that you have hopefully seen my rankings, I want to give my take on the tournament that most influenced my thinking (NYC). For reasons that will become evident, I allowed Matt West to respond. I received an email from two people in a ministry I discuss intently. Since the ministry is from Florida, and they participate in the FQA, I wanted to let him respond (and there was noone else I could trust without it turning into a message board-type article).

First, as is evident, there is a lot more clarity after the NYC than there was before. As the only one to vote FBCCF #1 before NYC, I feel a little bit of pride in voting it correctly. Of course, I also voted Athens in the top 5 (and was the only one making that gross error), and while they have top 5 talent, they have displayed bottom 5 effort. Note to Kyler and Al, post this on your bulletin boards and actually work before AACS.

Now, the first thing I want to do is relate everything to my last article that said the actual standings are more important than appearances. I came up with one exception. Both Woodside and FBCCF had top 3 teams. Both had a second team finish 3-4 spots behind them. Both of those second teams are decent teams, but (especially in the case of FBCCF) dramatically overachieved. The one exception to where someone actually finished is when they received help to get there. Any team that is the second place team from a ministry demands a look at their appearance. FBCCF’s second team, ironically called team #1, was no better than the 8th best team at the event. I received emails from some quizzers, so I contacted the best “neutral” party I knew–Matt West.

I have a unique perspective on this ministry. I see them every month. I have seen each of their quizzers perform well individually. Usually, Abby and Breanna are each stars and the rest of the team relies on them. When the second team was set up with no “star” then everyone knew they had to step up. Elisabeth and Ashlee each got clutch questions that propelled the team. Willie Santiago, Luke Brigham, and the Websters–John and Elizabeth–are all capable of becoming and have functioned as (at at least one event in the past) stars and this is an event where they showed what they have to those who have not seen them. It was really a great move to make them rely on themselves, rather than the ones everyone else already recognized as stars. You say they overachieved, I say that they are just now achieving what they should. Ironically, this top notch program has underachieved for years now.

The next thing I wish to address is the fact that they purposefully mislabeled their teams. Mr. Bamford has for years attempted to fix the schedule so that teams are given schedules based on their prognosticated ability. Changing teams 1 and 2 and their labels was clearly an attempt to alter this work of Mr. Bamford. This meant that FBCCF “2” never quizzed Old Paths or Woodside in the morning, while FBCCF “1” did. This also meant that there was a tie for top seed of undefeated teams and FBCCF won on points, naturally, because of their easier schedule.

I really can’t argue with the crux of your argument. I will say this: “GEORGE, IT IS ROUND ROBIN.” The tournament section is the really important part and that is PreBracketed, so there really is no possibility of cheating the system. If teams were really concerned about where they were seeded, Old Paths would have made sure they weren’t seeded 7th. While your point is correct, it is such a minor issue, it isn’t worth bringing up.

Beyond that, I think the rest of the teams kind of fall into place. I deviated a little with teams 8-10 and #4. Faith (MI) did not come, but the fact that they hung with Old Paths makes them a fantastic pick for #4. Capitol City is always good and I just feel that #8 is a worthy pick for them. Going to the junior division for my number 9 seed is controversial, no doubt. I, however, saw teams in both and I have never seen a better Middle School event. I think that to totally ignore the Middle School competition is missing the point. Last year, the #2 team at SCQANIT was a purely Middle School team. I think it is not quite as good this year, but it is coming. I would love to see some cross quizzing, at least in the Round Robin, so we can make these comparisons. Based on appearances, I feel that 6 High School teams better than Middle School #2 is appropriate.

I would just like to add to it that Open Door is solid. Grace’s older brother, Alex, is a great quizzer. Add him to what they had, and they certainly are an even better team. And unlike FBCCF, they won’t graduate anyone for a few years. Expect this team to make a rise. Perhaps they will be the team to unseat FBCCF like FBCCF did to TMA and TMA did to HSCA and HSCA did to CFCA and CFCA did to TMA and TMA did to PHCA and PHCA did to TCS. At any rate, I like your pick this time, George. I would like to add that Open Door, FBCCF’s MS teams, and others will come to our RAMS Finals in Tallahassee on January 29. We should have more than 15 teams for the biggest tournament ever at the RAMS level.

The only negative I observed is that some people disrespected site leaders, Brant and Tex, because of their age. I have said it before and will say it again, the position of quizmaster should demand more respect. If you are encouraging your kids to disrespect any quizmaster for any reason, please demand more. Not only are they dedicated people who have dramatically improved the Bible Quiz Hot Stove with this website, they are good quizmasters. All in all, I will say that NYC has never been better. Never have we had two teams as dominant as the two we had. Never before have the teams relegated to 3-10 been as good as they were. Never before have I been impressed by the Middle School division. Never before have we had clean quizzing with quality quizmasters. Never before has their been a situation where each of the top 7 quizmasters were so good. Never before have I felt like I was watching history. What a way to begin 2005!!

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