RICHARDSON , Texas (Sept. 29, 2006) – The University of Texas at Dallas' debate team began the new academic year the way it ended the last one – battling to be among the best college debaters in the United States.
As of Sept. 27, UT Dallas was ranked second in the nation in the Varsity Point Rankings of the National Debate Tournament, ahead of such prestigious schools as the University of California-Berkeley, Cornell, Georgetown and The University of Texas at Austin. The University of Southern California held the top spot.
“With only two tournaments under our belt so far this fall, it's very early in the season and we try not to give the rankings undue weight,” said UT Dallas Director of Debate Chris Burk. “But it's hard not to get excited about the prospect of competing at a level that could again place us among the elite collegiate debate programs.”
The No. 2 ranking is UT Dallas' highest ever, Burk said. The university last October was ranked third in the nation, its previous high, and finished the year as the 15 th -best college debate program. Last spring, UT Dallas qualified for its third consecutive National Debate Tournament, the most prestigious collegiate debate tournament in the U.S.
UT Dallas performed well in the varsity division in this year's contests, held at the University of Northern Iowa Sept. 16-18 and at Wichita State University Sept. 21-24. This weekend, the debaters head to a tournament at Missouri State University.
“As football coaches are fond of saying, we play one game at a time,” Burk said. “We want to perform at a consistently high level every time out in order to maintain a high national ranking and again qualify for the National Debate Tournament. Because UT Dallas doesn't field a football team, we like to think of that tournament as our ‘bowl game.'”
The 2006-07 National Debate Tournament will take place next spring at the Westin Park Central Hotel in Dallas. UT Dallas will be one of the event's major sponsors.
About UT Dallas
The University of Texas at Dallas, located at the convergence of Richardson , Plano and Dallas in the heart of the complex of major multinational technology corporations known as the Telecom Corridor, enrolls more than 14,500 students. The school's freshman class traditionally stands at the forefront of Texas state universities in terms of average SAT scores. The university offers a broad assortment of bachelor's, master's and doctoral degree programs. For additional information about UT Dallas, please visit the university's web site at www.utdallas.edu.