KU debate team ranked 2nd in nation

LAWRENCE — The University of Kansas debate squad has climbed to No. 2 in the country behind Northwestern University in the most recent Policy Debate Coach’s poll. The rest of the top 10, in order, are Georgetown University, Loyola Marymount University, Gonzaga University, Harvard University, the University of Oklahoma, the University of Michigan, the University of California at Berkeley and Baylor University. The rankings are based on the performance of debate teams at tournaments across the country. 

At the end of the first semester KU was ranked 6th in the country but has surged in the rankings based on a strong start to the second semester. KU debaters have performed well at several recent tournaments.

Freshman Amanda Gress and Junior Melanie Campbell went 10-1 at a tournament Jan. 28-30 at the University of Missouri-Kansas City and took third place in a field of 55 teams from across the country. Melanie Campbell won the first-place individual debater award at the tournament.

Senior brothers Patrick and Sean Kennedy went 10-1 and took second place at the University of California at Fullerton Jan. 7-9 in a national field of 99 teams.

Seniors Mark Wilkins and Mathew Petersen went 8-2 and took 3rd place in a national field of 92 teams at the University of Southern California Jan. 3-5.

Coach Scott Harris said, “We are very proud of the hard work and progress all of our debaters are making, and we are looking forward to a strong finish to the season.”