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Dark Horse Teams

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  • Dark Horse Teams

    We talk a lot about the teams that went to Nationals and did well, but I would be interested to hear what under the radar teams people think will do well next year. I'm thinking about teams that didn't make Nats this year, but could be built for a nice run next year. Any thoughts?

  • #2
    I'm a west coaster so I can really only comment on what teams got buzz over here, but a few stick out. The region is still predominantly dominated by the UCs and other major public universities, as well as a few perennial private powerhouses like Stanford, but there were still some surprises.

    From Colorado Springs, Air Force the host school won the tournament with 7 ballots after being consistently a middle-of-the-pack honorable mention team which is great for them. And Grand Canyon University which may be a new program since I can't find their previous results also made it out with 6 wins. This may be due to the relative lack of strength in the Colorado area, but I still think those two teams deserve a lot of credit.

    From Claremont, 2 teams Moorpark and Loyola Marymount have relatively new programs that had never made it out of regionals and both made it out and did decently at their first ORCS. The challenge with Moorpark is they are a community college so I assume a lot of their talent will be distributed to other Mock Trial programs in the LA area, but nonetheless, it is impressive. Loyola went from perennially finishing at the bottom of regionals to winning 6.5 ballots which came out of nowhere. I heard a lot of rumbling about these two teams because Claremont was supposed to be a really tough regional and a lot of teams that regularly get out didn't.

    Beyond that, it was a lot of the same teams that usually get out this year. Although I do want to give University of Oregon credit for taking 3 of the top 4 spots at Seattle. That's always impressive when a C team can place that high but their program is massive.


    • #3
      HarperVillafanasTears Last year LMU went 4-4 with a CS of 19.5 (Splitting with UCLA C and Santa Barbara A) so I wouldn't say they came out of no where. The thing about Claremont was that because there were so many teams, your chances of hitting Irvine A, Stanford, Berkeley B, etc. were lower so teams like Moorpark and LMU weren't hitting these heavy hitters. But even if they did, only one team out of the 9 that moved on (plus the 3 open bids that all moved on) went to nationals. Compare that to Fresno where there were only 21 teams but 4 got bids to nationals and one was on the open bid list, plus some strong C-E teams and its hard to compare a team that went 3-5 (like Claremont) vs. LMU. I think both will be competitive next year but I would put Claremont McKenna's odds higher


      • #4
        Don't know how "Dark Horse" these are, especially in light of how many teams the first one sent to ORCS, but I'd expect FSU to make it back to Nationals in the next year. Additionally, teams like NYU and Haverford seem likely contenders.