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April 5, 2013
Libery University Debate

Liberty University Debate Team Claims American Debate Association and Cross Examination Debate Association National Championships

After trailing Northwestern University and George Mason University for much of the season, the Liberty University Debate Team made a late charge to capture the sweepstakes championships in both the American Debate Association (ADA) and Cross Examination Debate Association (CEDA).  Led by seniors Andrew Landrum and Aaron Siegrist, the Flames captured titles at Wake Forest University, Rutgers University, The United States Naval Academy, Towson University, and the American Debate Association National Tournament.

This marks the fifth consecutive year Liberty has finished atop both the ADA and CEDA rankings.  The National Debate Tournament (NDT) will release its final rankings in late April.

American Debate Association Final Rankings

1.  Liberty  University
2.  George Mason University    
3.  James Madison University
4.  Wake Forest University
5.  University of Florida   
6.  University of Georgia       
7.  Vanderbilt University
8.  University of Mary Washington   
9.  Wayne State University
10.  Samford University

Cross Examination Debate Association Final Rankings

1.  Liberty University
2.  George Mason University
3.  Northwestern University
4.  Binghamton University
5.  James Madison University
6.  US Military Academy
7.  Oklahoma University
8.  Harvard University
9.  Georgetown University
10.  Wake Forest University

2012 Press Releases

April 12, 2012
Liberty University Debate

Liberty University Debate Team to host debate on Lynchburg City Budget

When:  Friday, April 27.  Doors open at 6:30pm.  Debate starts at 7:00pm.
Where: Towns Auditorium, inside of Liberty University’s Religion Hall.
What:  Public Debate on the following resolution:

Resolved:  When balancing the budget, Lynchburg City Council should prefer tax increases to substantial budget cuts.

Join us as Liberty University’s national champion debate team tackles one of the most pressing issues facing Lynchburg.  Our city currently faces the multifaceted challenges of an economic recession, unfunded federal and state mandates, and rising health care and energy costs.  Faced with a multi-million dollar deficit, Lynchburg City Council is currently investigating all alternatives, including cuts to public services like education and public safety and increasing the real estate tax rate.  These are issues that no Lynchburg resident should ignore.

We invite all residents of Lynchburg to attend what promises to be a lively debate on our upcoming budget.  At the conclusion of the debate, the floor will be open for members of the audience to ask questions, share comments, and offer short speeches.  Free public parking will be available in the lot adjacent to Religion Hall.

March 22, 2012
Liberty University Debate

On the strength of a dominating performance at the American Debate Association National Tournament, the Liberty University Debate Team has captured its 9th consecutive and 15th overall American Debate Association Sweepstakes Championship.  The 25th ADA National Championship was held March 10-12 at Clarion University.

Seniors Lincoln Garrett and Austin Woodruff led the way, winning the varsity division of the ADA National Tournament while compiling a perfect record against teams from Boston College, Wake Forest, Vanderbilt, and many other schools.  Woodruff was recognized as the tournament’s 3rd overall speaker, while Garrett captured the 8th placed speaker award.  Garrett and Woodruff won 9 consecutive debates on their way to the championship.

Mark Febrizio and Zack Lotspeich joined Katie Alsop and Tara Rossdeutscher in the semifinal round of the junior varsity division, losing close debates on split decisions.  Febrizio was named the division’s 2nd overall speaker, with Rossdeutscher (5th) and Lotspeich (6th) also earning recognition.

The novice division was a battle between Liberty and the University of Florida, with each school placing two teams in the semifinal round.  Lindsey Murray and Wesley Walker defeated Florida in one semifinal debate while Caleb Bridwell and Micah Laremore lost a split decision in the other semifinal.  Murray and Walker were defeated by Florida in the final round.  Meagan Edwards (6th) joined Laremore (7th), and Walker (8th) in earning recognition among the division’s top speakers.

The Flames next travel to the National Debate Tournament at Emory University, March 28-April 2.

American Debate Association Final Rankings

1. Liberty University
2. James Madison University
3. George Mason University
4. Vanderbilt University
5. University of Florida
6. Wayne State University
7. University of Mary Washington
8. Wake Forest University
9. University of Kentucky
10. United States Naval Academy


2011 Press Releases

April 26, 2011
Liberty University Debate

The Liberty University Debate Team capped another national championship sweep by adding the American Debate Association (ADA) sweepstakes championship to their 2010-2011 collection.  The Flames captured the Cross Examination Debate Association (CEDA) and National Debate Tournament (NDT) titles earlier this month.  This marks the third consecutive and fifth time overall that Liberty University has swept the sweepstakes rankings of debate's three governing organizations.  Liberty remains the only school to win all three championships in a single season and has now earned 28 national rankings championships since 1995.

2010-2011 American Debate Association Final Rankings

1.  Liberty University
2.  George Mason University
3.  James Madison University
4.  University of Mary Washington
5.  Vanderbilt University
6.  Wayne State University
7.  John Carroll University
8.  Wake Forest University
9.  Samford University
10.  Clarion University

The Liberty University Debate Team competes at the highest levels of intercollegiate policy debate and recruits debaters of all experience levels.  For more information, visit or contact Director of Debate, Michael Hall, (434) 582-2080.

April 19, 2011
Liberty University Debate

Liberty University's Debate Team capped their 2010-2011 season by capturing the Cross Examination Debate Association (CEDA) and National Debate Tournament (NDT) sweepstakes championships.  Liberty has finished atop the CEDA and NDT rankings in five of the last six seasons, including their current record of three consecutive championships.

Lead by seniors Eddie Fitzgerald and Ben Hagwood and juniors Lincoln Garrett and Austin Woodruff, the Flames held off a late-season challenge from Northwestern University to earn the CEDA and NDT titles.  Liberty's debaters now await the final rankings of the American Debate Association (ADA) as they seek a national championship sweep in each of debate's three governing organizations.

CEDA Final Rankings

1.  Liberty University
2.  Northwestern University
3.  Emory University
4.  Cornell University
5.  Binghamton University
6.  University of Kansas
7.  University of Oklahoma
8.  University of Mary Washington
9.  Harvard University
10.  West Virginia University

NDT Final Rankings

1. Liberty University
2. Northwestern University
3. Emory University
4. University of Oklahoma
5. Cornell University
6. Binghamton University
7. Harvard University
8. University of Kansas
9. U.S. Military Academy
10. George Mason University

The Liberty University Debate Team competes at the highest levels of intercollegiate policy debate and recruits debaters of all experience levels.  For more information, visit or contact Director of Debate, Michael Hall, (434) 582-2080.

February 8, 2011
Liberty University Debate

Liberty University’s top-ranked debate team is in top form as they begin the spring semester drive toward their third consecutive sweep of debate’s three ranking organizations.  At the semester break, the Flames held the top spot in the American Debate Association, Cross-Examination Debate Association, and National Debate Tournament rankings.  As Emory, Harvard, Oklahoma, and Northwestern gave chase, L.U. widened its lead after two strong tournaments at the U.S. Naval Academy and the University of Kentucky.

At the Naval Academy, the Flames qualified eleven two-person teams for the elimination rounds, easily outdistancing their next closest competitors.  L.U. placed four teams in the final sixteen of the varsity division, including the second seeded team of Eddie Fitzgerald and Benjamin Hagwood and the third seeded team of Lincoln Garrett and Austin Woodruff.  Unfortunately, L.U. bowed out in the quarterfinals of the varsity division, but not before claiming seven of the top eleven speaker awards.  Fitzgerald was named the tournament’s top speaker, while his partner Hagwood earned second place honors.  Completing the Flames’ dominating performance were Woodruff (5th), Ryan Bass (8th), Jackie Poapst (9th), Garrett (10th), and Beau Troxclair (11th).  It is also worth noting that in previous Naval Academy tournaments, Fitzgerald earned top speaker honors in the novice and junior varsity divisions.  Although we lack accurate records from early Naval Academy tournaments, Fitzgerald is believed to be the first person to accomplish this feat.

In the junior varsity division, the team of Derek Quinn-Woods and Joshua Woosley entered the elimination rounds as the 2ndseed and advanced all the way to the final round before losing a close decision to George Mason University.  Joining Quinn-Woods and Woosley in JV elimination rounds were the team of Brittannie Hedrick and Alex Hughes.  Quinn-Woods was named the fifth place speaker, while his partner Woosley took home seventh place honors.

The Flames wreaked havoc on the novice division, claiming five of the top eight seeds entering elimination rounds.  The team of Zach Lotspeich and Sarah Victor combined with the team of Shawn Cowden and Aaron Trujillo to advance to the final round and claim the novice division for L.U.  Lotspeich and Victor were a perfect 6-0 in preliminary rounds, making them the only team in the tournament in any division to survive the tournament without a single loss.  Also representing L.U. in novice elimination rounds were the teams of Mark Febrizio and Alex Holguin (2ndseed), Sally Ann Edwards and Tara Rossdeutscher (5th), and Emily Elrod and Jacqueline Gregoire (8th).  The Flames also earned five of the top ten speaker awards in the novice division, led by Lotspeich, who was named top speaker.  Following Lotspeich were Febrizio (5th), Holguin (6th), Victor (8th), and Elrod (9th).

Shortly after returning from the Naval Academy, Liberty’s varsity debaters departed for the University of Kentucky to attend this season’s largest tournament to date.  With more than 150 teams in attendance, L.U. recorded wins over Harvard, Kansas, Emory, Wake Forest, Oklahoma, Southern California and many other schools as the Flames’ top three teams recorded a combined preliminary round record of 17-7.  At the conclusion of the preliminary rounds Emory, Harvard, Kansas, and Northwestern joined Liberty University as the only schools to qualify two teams to the elimination rounds.  While the team of Poapst and Troxclair (5-3 in prelims) narrowly missed qualifying for the elimination rounds, the teams of Fitzgerald and Hagwood (6-2), and Garrett and Woodruff (6-2) advanced before bowing out to Vanderbilt and Georgia, respectively.  Out of more than 300 speakers, Fitzgerald was named 17th speaker, while Hagwood finished 22nd.

Next up on the Flames’ schedule is the District VII qualifying tournament for the National Debate Tournament on February 19-20.

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