I receive hundreds of story pitches each week via e-mail, but this may be the best ever. It came from former University of Georgia academic quiz team member extraordinaire Chris Chiego, now a doctoral student at the UC San Diego.
Chris clearly loves quiz tournaments, and made me want to go to this weekend’s nationals here in Atlanta featuring 16 Georgia teams.
I love quiz bowls although I’ve had no luck prodding any of my four kids into the game. I am still working on one of my twins who collects facts and has taken it upon himself to learn every capital in the world. (I was still asleep this morning when he asked me, “Ouagadougou is the capital of which country?”)
These sorts of competitions — and the National Geographic Bee this week in Washington in which Westminster seventh grade student Nilai Sarda placed second– reward academic prowess. It’s wonderful that Atlanta is playing host to the National Academic Quiz Tournament’s National Championship.
Good luck to all the teams, but especially the home teams.
This is the note that Chris sent me:
This weekend the National Academic Quiz Tournaments’ (NAQT) High School National Championship Tournament (HSNCT) is taking place in Atlanta at the Hyatt. Georgia has 16 teams (out of 224 total) competing, including teams from Bainbridge, Brookwood, Cedar Shoals, Centennial, Chattahoochee, Flowery Branch, Lakeside (Evans), Lakeside (Atlanta), Marist, Norcross, Pickens, Walton, Westminster, and Woodward Academy.
If you get a chance to stop by, I’d definitely recommend it- it’s chaotic but awesome. If you can’t make it, updates should be posted at: www.hsnct.wordpress.com
Some potential story lines that might be of interest to GA audiences:
- Alpharetta (16), Centennial (9), and Chattahoochee (25) are all ranked in the top 25 in the country (with Walton right behind them). Will they live up to their rankings? Will they be able to best the best-ever finish by a Georgia school (2003 Walton- 4th place)?
- Centennial High School’s Adam Silverman may be the greatest individual player in the entire country, putting up ridiculous statlines and essentially willing his team to a top-10 national ranking. But will his rival from Alpharetta, William Horton, (no slouch of a player, either) best him for the honor of best player in Georgia?
(Update from William: As flattering as it is to be featured on this blog, it is true that Alpharetta won’t be competing at the HSNCT this weekend. It didn’t work out with our graduation schedule. So best of luck to Centennial, Walton, Chattahoochee, and the rest of the Georgia teams this weekend! Alpharetta will be competing at the PACE National Scholastics Championship in Chicago next weekend
What’s happened to Brookwood? The venerable program (which still hosts the largest non-national tournament each year in the country) didn’t even make the playoffs last year for the first time in many years. Can they get back their mojo this year?
–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog