KU Army ROTC to host 18th annual Ranger Buddy Competition

Students compete at the 2011 ROTC Ranger Buddy Competition.

LAWRENCE – University of Kansas Army ROTC Cadets will be among 260 students from across the United States challenging them to find out just how physically and mentally strong they can be.  

Two-person teams from 29 colleges and universities in 13 states will compete at the 18th annual Kansas Army ROTC Ranger Buddy Competition on Saturday, March 31, at the Sesquicentennial Park area at Clinton Lake southwest of Lawrence. Teams will compete from as far as North Dakota, Nevada and Tuskegee University, Alabama. The contest is a spectator event that is free and open to the public. Cadets on male, female or co-ed teams will go through a series of events as they vie for the title of Best Ranger Buddy Team.  

KU looks to defend its first-place finish in the Male Division and third-place finish in the Co-ed Division. Last year’s Male Division Champions from KU, Cadet John Bergman, of Lawrence, and Cadet Stuart McConnell, of Newton, are looking to lead the way toward another Jayhawk Championship. This year a new award will encourage schools to compete in all three divisions. The “Top Battalion” award will go to the school with the best finish in Male, Female and Co-ed Divisions.  

Competition will begin at 5 a.m. with a 15-kilometer buddy team ruck march, followed by a eight-event round robin and a final 10-kilometer buddy run. 

“If ever there was an ROTC open house event, this is it,” said Lt. Col. John Clark, KU Army ROTC Admissions Officer. “The cadets leave nothing on the table when it is done. If you are curious about ROTC training, this event highlights the toughest aspects of it.  I encourage spectators to visit anytime during the day to cheer on fellow Jayhawks to victory.”

The round-robin events will challenge the cadets with extra demands this year. Eight events are all designed to be mini-obstacle courses. Cadets will face challenges that will require knowledge of knots, military reporting formats, individual movement techniques, first aid tasks, weapons tasks and more.

The following schools have already registered for the competition: KU, Kansas State University, Pittsburg State University, University of Arkansas–Fayetteville, Central Missouri State University, University of Colorado–Boulder, University of Illinois-Urbana-Champaign, University of Illinois-Chicago, University of Iowa, Iowa State University, Marquette, University of Minnesota–Mankato, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, University of Missouri–Columbia, Missouri Science and Technology, Missouri Western State University, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, University of Nevada-Las Vegas, University of North Dakota, North Dakota State University, Northeastern State University, University of Northern Iowa, University of Oklahoma, South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, South Dakota State University, The College of Saint Benedict and Saint John's University, Washington University, Wentworth Military Academy and Tuskegee University.
    5 a.m. – First formation/opening address
    5:10 a.m. – Buddy Team 10 mile forced ruck march
    8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.  – Group Events (Round Robin)
    5 p.m.-6 p.m. – Buddy Team 10 km buddy run
    6:30 p.m. – Closing/Awards Ceremony

For more information regarding this event, please check out KU Army ROTC’s website  and click on “2012 Ranger Buddy Competition.”