The Athens New Years Classic

Golf has the PGA championship, the Masters, the British Open, and the US Open. Tennis has the French Open, the Australian Open, the US Open, and Wimbledon. Those are the Grand Slams-the big 4. There are several other tournaments, good tournaments, but none compare to the big 4. The Bible Quizzing season resembles those sports. The AACS national championship, SCQANIT, the Colorado Invitational, and the New Year’s Classic for a quizzing gauntlet from January to April. Just as golf and tennis have several other solid tournaments throughout the year, it is those top 4 that set the bar. The past few years have seen tournaments in Michigan, North Carolina, Florida, New Jersey and Indiana gain national attention. Tournaments have risen and fallen in California, West Virginia, and Tennessee. However, the Grand Slams have remained steady, if not improved.

Since my quizzing days, SCQANIT and the AACS National Championship have battled for national preeminence. Some say there is no better tournament than the Colorado Invitational. One thing is certain: It takes a great Bible Quiz team to win the New Year’s Classic. In recent years, the year’s first tournament has fielded nearly 30 teams and has often lasted near midnight. I remember in 2003 getting the 2nd place trophy at 11 o’clock PM. It is the ultimate battle of endurance and stamina. Experience and Coaching is vital. Some teams carefully reserve energy and monitor what they eat while others play basketball during the breaks and hope to stay alert. No matter the strategy, any team hoping to carry away the big trophy must overcome nerves, bad breaks, and exhaustion. Any person who hasn’t experienced such a test would accuse this article of sensationalism, but any quizzer who has persevered to the finals of the NYC will tell you that 12+ hours of straight quizzing will make you think twice even in reciting John 3:16.

The 2011 season of Bible Quiz looks to be possibly the most competitive season in years. There is a distinct chance that four unique teams could win one of the Grand Slams each this season. We will find out much about how the season will shake out as we view nearly every top level team in America this Saturday. If you can make the tournament as a spectator or a quizzer, we encourage you to join us in Athens, Georgia on January 8th. Check back with Thursday January 6th for our Prediction article.

Comments 13

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