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General Questions Galore comments post Lexington 
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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
Note from moderators: this thread was split from the 2009 Lexington Tournament thread on Mar 22 @ 11:30 PM. I have edited some posts only to add contextual quotes. If you notice anything that is out of context, please let me know and I'll fix it as best as I can. -- Jeffrey

scphilli wrote:
OK I have a little more time to elaborate, albeit discreetly.

I have gone to approximately over 100 high school tournaments in Missouri. This is the first and only time I have heard coaches, players, and staff complain about the sheer absurdity of a set with staggering unanimity. The McCrary's ran a wonderful tournament (some setbacks that they overcame or did all they could to) and should be commended. I thoroughly enjoyed the experience of working with them.

As to Questions Galore. There were many instances of clearly wrong answers in math, in music, and in science. There were questions that were so vague, I felt as though I were Gene Rayburn running an episode of Match Game where it was the Super Match and the poor contestant was trying to match Patty Duetsch. How do you put a vague answer together with someone who is by all accounts functionally insane? The result is you do not. I have never seen a set so hell bent on insulting the intelligence and ability of everyone involved and I have never seen coaches, staff, and players so united in their deep seated loathing for what transpired in my 13 years.

I fully intend to determine under the Sunshine laws (as the contract is paid by state money) who actually voted for this company and do everything I can to make sure those people are removed from positions of authority. This was not acceptable in any way shape or form. Anyone who accepted this over another viable bid should defend themselves within the close of business on Friday. You have wasted the state's money and our time in dealing with these charlatans.


Uh...not that your efforts aren't appreciated, Sean, but wasn't the issue that no one else bidded on the contract (alleged lost bids notwithstanding)?

MODERATOR EDIT: Added cross-thread quote for context.


Last edited by Jeffrey Hill on Sat Jan 30, 2010 12:03 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Sat Mar 21, 2009 9:40 pm
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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
Perhaps some people in MSHSAA actually saw the trash for what it was and just didn't vote. Those are the people that can stick around =)


Sat Mar 21, 2009 9:43 pm
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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
Charbroil wrote:
Uh...not that your efforts aren't appreciated, Sean, but wasn't the issue that no one else bidded on the contract (alleged lost bids notwithstanding)?
Well, yeah, but that's because nobody's willing to conform to Missouri's ridiculous distribution and nonstandard game format. Questions aren't going to improve until Missouri adopts a format that quality writers are willing to write for.


Sat Mar 21, 2009 9:45 pm
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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
Charbroil wrote:
Uh...not that your efforts aren't appreciated, Sean, but wasn't the issue that no one else bidded on the contract (alleged lost bids notwithstanding)?
If you think I believe that, or anyone who asserts it, then I'm the Queen of Sheba.


<div class="editby">Edited by <a href='http://s4.zetaboards.com/Academic_Competition/profile/89056/'>scphilli</a>, Mar 21 2009, 10:46:22 PM.</div>


Sat Mar 21, 2009 9:45 pm
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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
scphilli wrote:
I fully intend to determine under the Sunshine laws (as the contract is paid by state money) who actually voted for this company and do everything I can to make sure those people are removed from positions of authority. This was not acceptable in any way shape or form. Anyone who accepted this over another viable bid should defend themselves within the close of business on Friday. You have wasted the state's money and our time in dealing with these charlatans.
Sean,

Is this some kind of joke? Or do you actually not read what has been written on this message board? Or, do you not comprehend the situation which I clearly presented in an earlier post?

Message boards are interesting in that people can write from such an extreme view of passion (though they would never present their arguments in such a venemous way in person).

I don't know what to tell you except right before we took the official vote to accept our one bid, Questions Galore, I stated to the committee (oh, . . . I am one of the 8 you will be looking to remove from office . . . the others are all listed clearly on the MSHSAA website and were also clearly identified at the MACA convention and any other place I was given the opportunity . . . . in other words, I am sure you spent countless hours studying to pass the bar, but you can spend about 3 seconds finding the names you wish to excommunicate from all quiz bowl activities forever) "I feel like we are taking a step back in the imrovement of the game that we have worked towards." Everyone in there agreed with me, but the reasoning (and I am not sure I fully agreed with this) was that we had to honor our said deadline to remain respectable to all question providers.

We are using Questions Galore for our Gateway Athletic Conference next week at Francis Howell. Maybe it is just quality St. Charles County values coming through, but I am going to guess the analysis will be a little less venemous whether FHC or FZW prevails. I also will suggest those two teams will not lose to any of the other 7 teams in attendance, no matter how bad the questions may be.


Sun Mar 22, 2009 4:18 pm
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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
CherryCokeStain wrote:
And let's all be honest, these questions don't really even constitute a tournament they're so terrible. After having to play on them, unedited, I am absolutely appalled that MSHSAA would even consider them, much less choose them, especially over a high quality bid from Matt Weiner that "disappeared." The only good thing that has come of it is that is seems that there is an overwhelming hatred of these questions from all corners of the quizbowl world, whether people like pyramidal or not, they hate QG, and this could hopefully cause enough of a stirring for NAQT or MOQBA to make a bid next year, because I would hope that coaches right to MSHSAA and complain about this atrocity that MSHSAA has imposed upon us.
We saw no bid from Matt. How many times does this have to be spelled out here? Feel free to ask Coach Camp (Liberty) the same question. For that matter, contact the MSHSAA liason.



NAQT will not submit a bid. They have made that clear.


I have no idea about MOQBA.


Sun Mar 22, 2009 4:22 pm
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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
FZW Coach wrote:
scphilli wrote:
I fully intend to determine under the Sunshine laws (as the contract is paid by state money) who actually voted for this company and do everything I can to make sure those people are removed from positions of authority. This was not acceptable in any way shape or form. Anyone who accepted this over another viable bid should defend themselves within the close of business on Friday. You have wasted the state's money and our time in dealing with these charlatans.
Sean,

Is this some kind of joke? Or do you actually not read what has been written on this message board? Or, do you not comprehend the situation which I clearly presented in an earlier post?

Message boards are interesting in that people can write from such an extreme view of passion (though they would never present their arguments in such a venemous way in person).

I don't know what to tell you except right before we took the official vote to accept our one bid, Questions Galore, I stated to the committee (oh, . . . I am one of the 8 you will be looking to remove from office . . . the others are all listed clearly on the MSHSAA website and were also clearly identified at the MACA convention and any other place I was given the opportunity . . . . in other words, I am sure you spent countless hours studying to pass the bar, but you can spend about 3 seconds finding the names you wish to excommunicate from all quiz bowl activities forever) "I feel like we are taking a step back in the imrovement of the game that we have worked towards." Everyone in there agreed with me, but the reasoning (and I am not sure I fully agreed with this) was that we had to honor our said deadline to remain respectable to all question providers.

We are using Questions Galore for our Gateway Athletic Conference next week at Francis Howell. Maybe it is just quality St. Charles County values coming through, but I am going to guess the analysis will be a little less venemous whether FHC or FZW prevails. I also will suggest those two teams will not lose to any of the other 7 teams in attendance, no matter how bad the questions may be.
Okay, Sean, you know I have a ton of respect for you and everything you've done for the game... but I have to agree that this is out of line.

As I told Charlie last time this was discussed, if someone can find hard evidence that Matt Weiner's bid was deliberately lost or ignored, they can feel free to present it here. If no such evidence can be found (and to be perfectly blunt with everyone, despite all of the problems that we can agree MSHSAA has, I find such a situation completely impossible to believe) this line of argument needs to stop.


Sun Mar 22, 2009 5:36 pm
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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
FZW Coach wrote:
Maybe it is just quality St. Charles County values coming through, but I am going to guess the analysis will be a little less venemous whether FHC or FZW prevails.
Notwithstanding some of Sean's comments--which, I admit, are somewhat more vicious, especially in treating MSHSAA & the Advisory Committee, than I would prefer--you have to admit that all of the points brought up are valid.

Even if you ignore the problems with spelling, math computation, etc. as debatable points about what should and shouldn't be covered in Quiz Bowl, we still have a staggering number of useless, and worse, misleading clues that actively penalize teams that try to anticipate the question and buzz. Like you mentioned about earlier tournaments, there are questions where there are many different answers you can give at various points. Even without endorsing some of the vitriol, it seems undeniable that there are serious problems with these questions.


Sun Mar 22, 2009 5:41 pm
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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
FZW Coach wrote:
We are using Questions Galore for our Gateway Athletic Conference next week at Francis Howell. Maybe it is just quality St. Charles County values coming through, but I am going to guess the analysis will be a little less venemous whether FHC or FZW prevails. I also will suggest those two teams will not lose to any of the other 7 teams in attendance, no matter how bad the questions may be.
I didn't catch this. Are you saying us heathens in KC are evil and spit fire at everything?


Sun Mar 22, 2009 5:45 pm
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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
Charbroil wrote:
Notwithstanding some of Sean's comments--which, I admit, are somewhat more vicious, especially in treating MSHSAA & the Advisory Committee, than I would prefer--you have to admit that all of the points brought up are valid.
Yeah. Here's the thing - I'm pretty sure no one in the entire state actually likes Questions Galore. It is pretty much undeniable at this point that their questions are so bad that no result obtained using them is valid, and this makes any tournament using them - especially Districts, Sectionals and State - lose a lot of their legitimacy.


Sun Mar 22, 2009 5:48 pm
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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
DeckardCain wrote:
FZW Coach wrote:
scphilli wrote:
I fully intend to determine under the Sunshine laws (as the contract is paid by state money) who actually voted for this company and do everything I can to make sure those people are removed from positions of authority. This was not acceptable in any way shape or form. Anyone who accepted this over another viable bid should defend themselves within the close of business on Friday. You have wasted the state's money and our time in dealing with these charlatans.
Sean,

Is this some kind of joke? Or do you actually not read what has been written on this message board? Or, do you not comprehend the situation which I clearly presented in an earlier post?

Message boards are interesting in that people can write from such an extreme view of passion (though they would never present their arguments in such a venemous way in person).

I don't know what to tell you except right before we took the official vote to accept our one bid, Questions Galore, I stated to the committee (oh, . . . I am one of the 8 you will be looking to remove from office . . . the others are all listed clearly on the MSHSAA website and were also clearly identified at the MACA convention and any other place I was given the opportunity . . . . in other words, I am sure you spent countless hours studying to pass the bar, but you can spend about 3 seconds finding the names you wish to excommunicate from all quiz bowl activities forever) "I feel like we are taking a step back in the imrovement of the game that we have worked towards." Everyone in there agreed with me, but the reasoning (and I am not sure I fully agreed with this) was that we had to honor our said deadline to remain respectable to all question providers.

We are using Questions Galore for our Gateway Athletic Conference next week at Francis Howell. Maybe it is just quality St. Charles County values coming through, but I am going to guess the analysis will be a little less venemous whether FHC or FZW prevails. I also will suggest those two teams will not lose to any of the other 7 teams in attendance, no matter how bad the questions may be.
Okay, Sean, you know I have a ton of respect for you and everything you've done for the game... but I have to agree that this is out of line.

As I told Charlie last time this was discussed, if someone can find hard evidence that Matt Weiner's bid was deliberately lost or ignored, they can feel free to present it here. If no such evidence can be found (and to be perfectly blunt with everyone, despite all of the problems that we can agree MSHSAA has, I find such a situation completely impossible to believe) this line of argument needs to stop.
OK I did what I accuse many people (Dees most notably of doing) of overstating a case and for that I apologize. Two hours of sleep and seven hours in a car probably contributed to my agitation and anger, so I am quite sorry for being more what I'll euphemistically call "spunky" but what is really just rhymes with "witchy" behavior. I will make an effort to sleep on criticism in the future.

That being said:

No bid would be better than this bid. I am not even kidding. I saw 40 teams, many of whom I know to be filled with some of our best and brightest basically spending their day having their intelligence insulted. And this was the opinion of players, staffers (who quite generously donated their time to help with this), and coaches. I do not care who won. Savannah won, great. My comments are not affected by that Mr. Gibbs. I am not speaking as someone who has some broad theory about quizbowl and what is ideal and all that other really lofty rhetoric which is possible only in an ideal world. The work of this company is simply not acceptable. I would have extended the deadlines and looked for another bid. It is my hope that after this contract has lapsed since there is nothing I can realistically do to affect policy at the moment, that you take an honest look at how these questions were perceived by all involved and you resolve never to use these people again no matter how low they bid (and they will drastically underbid just like they did in Oklahoma). The students of Missouri deserve better. And sometimes nothing is better.


Sun Mar 22, 2009 8:27 pm
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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
One last thing:

Mr. Gibbs I understand that all of this is public information as to who is on the committee and what but what I would like and what I am entitled to as a citizen who pays taxes to the state of Missouri that funds the contract that was awarded to Questions Galore (and therefore I have legal standing in this matter above and beyond merely going to a tournament 3 1/2 hours away from where I live and witnessing that atrocity that will surely repeat itself at what should be our most important tournaments) is an actual photocopy of the minutes of any and all consideration of bids for the current MSHSAA contract. If you can arrange it so I do not have to contact the offices of what I'm presuming is Robin Carnahan but might be the Lt. Gov., please have them sent in a pdf file to this email:

seanphilli@hotmail.com

And I will be discussing with Representative Rachel Storch and State Senator Jeff Smith (who is a former teacher of mine) as to whether or not it is a good idea that MSHSAA oversee this activity in the future.


<div class="editby">Edited by <a href='http://s4.zetaboards.com/Academic_Competition/profile/89056/'>scphilli</a>, Mar 22 2009, 10:00:05 PM.</div>


Sun Mar 22, 2009 8:46 pm
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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
I don't post here much, but I wanted to add my $0.02 here.

The questions were just that bad. The scores tell the story. The best teams in the state were at this event, and they broke 300 maybe once. The questions were so bad that by the end of the third round, I had a headache from reading them. :( A couple of people were witness to some of my anguish, and I appreciate them letting me vent a little. I really needed it!

I've worked even more tournaments than Sean, and this set would definitely rank as one of the worst I've ever seen. I played on a few sets in the late '90's that were worse than this, but question writing is a far more demanding science now. This set, for this day and age, was just disgusting. I'm a decent question writer myself (or so I like to think); I found it sickening.

As far as the bids for District/State questions (more correctly, the lack thereof), my opinion is the same as Jeff's. Very few people write Missouri format anymore (calling it MSHSAA format is incorrect). I won my first state title in 1995, and the format was the same then and has not changed one iota since. That was so long ago that MSHSAA didn't even control quiz bowl at that time. Back then, State was controlled by MACA's predecessor, the MAA (Missouri Academic Association).

Quiz bowl as it was in 1995 no longer exists. The time has come for us to truly consider putting the Missouri format to rest. It is obsolete. It is a fine quiz bowl relic that deserves to be put on the shelf for the museum piece it is. We didn't have sets like NAQT or something similar when I played; it was different then. Players of today should not have to play on the same format I played on well over a decade ago. We need to change.

If nothing else, I would like to suggest the possibility of having some sort of safety valve for question quality. Perhaps MSHSAA and/or MACA could appoint some sort of ombudsman, if you will. Somebody impartial with experience that everybody could trust with no tie to any team who could examine sets from the winning District/State bidder to insure that we don't get something like this set in the most prestigious events of the year. We need to demand better from our question suppliers. We're not going to get better questions until we do so.

Maybe that's a crazy idea, but I think we need something like that. We complain a lot about poor quality District/State questions, and rightfully so. But it is also up to us to fix the problem. We're the only people who can do so.


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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
Speaking as a quiz bowl player with a lot, and I mean a lot of experience playing terrible questions. I must agree with the majority of this panel. If what I have read is right, it is down right atrocious to accept such a bid from such a lousy company. I do believe that we do need to bring in an expert to help our plight, which, if I may say so, is a gross understatement.

Believe me, I could tell some horror stories about the garbage I have had to play on through my career, but never in all my life have I seen so many people go crazy over one tournament, and I've been a part of the now locally infamous 2009 Mark Twain Conf. Tournament. My recommendation to the MACA, as well as MSHSAA is to heed the words of many of the people on this board. Do research, change the format. Believe me when I say this: A majority of the problems you encounter now would be very easily resolved by changing the format. The current format we use is long, tedious, and as obvious by the fact we are using QG, discourages companies like NAQT and HSAPQ to submit bids. By changing the format in Missouri to what is more nationally accepted, you could easily draw in better writers, instead of having to use the terrible writers we use now. I hoped that when my last year started, the state's quiz bowl would improve after the overall wonderful acceptance of Shawn Pickrell's questions. Simply put, change the format, and you will begin to see an overall improvement in the game.


Tue Mar 24, 2009 7:26 pm
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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
Ok, after a quick glance at Mr. Hill's summary of the QG questions, I think I see one of the issues. One of the suggestions made to Questions Galore earlier in the year was that the questions ought to teach the players something new; this was one of the reasons that one-liners were unacceptable. From what I can see, the QG people took this to mean, "Include lots of extra information before getting to the heart of a question, even if this information is on a tangent or provides no information useful to buzzing." I think this represents a rather large misunderstanding of the intent of prior complaints.


Tue Mar 24, 2009 11:07 pm
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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
The length of these questions varies ridiculously; from the really short one line, one clue questions to at least one question that was 7 lines long (in 12 point font, so about typical ACF-length 6 lines.), the first half of which was a rambling tangent. The short questions were the ones they already had in their bank, and the long, unhelpful ones were written after this suggestion. And some questions that I called "one liners" are actually 2 1/2 or even 3 lines long, but the beginning of the question is the "what is"-type phrase, so it's all one sentence.

I'd say the average question length was close to 3 lines.


<div class="editby">Edited by <a href='http://s4.zetaboards.com/Academic_Competition/profile/88961/'>U. Lou Sthagaim</a>, Mar 25 2009, 01:32:06 AM.</div>


Wed Mar 25, 2009 12:14 am
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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
Does anyone have knowledge or can direct me to a link of the formats used in other states?


Price has never been an issue with the questions we have selected for the Missouri state series or for the Two Saints league since I have been involved with selecting questions for both (2006).


Sean, good luck with your persuit. You do realize that if you took this activity away from MSHSAA, it would not be what it is. Many schools would not support it (including my own). I don't have to raise any money for the various tournaments we attend or ever worry about a "budget." That would not be the case without MSHSAA's involvement.

We do want more quality bids. We only had 1 last year and 4 the year before. I was not involved with the selection of Avery and the three-year contract that was given them. Ripping companies on message boards does not help improve our chances of receiving such bids.


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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
Does MSHSAA fund you?


Wed Mar 25, 2009 8:44 pm
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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
Quote:
Does anyone have knowledge or can direct me to a link of the formats used in other states?

If you go to hsquizbowl you can glean enough information there about what formats are used on a national scale (psst - your team played them at MST Fall and WUHSAC). Suffice it to say, in many of the most active regions of the country (all of the Southeast, including Georgia where the coaches got so angry about being taken over by an athletic organization for one year in the 90s that they flooded the office with paperwork until the organization gave up and let them go, Minnesota, California, Michigan, D.C. and Maryland, Texas, Pennsylvania), there simply is no athletic organization that has quizbowl in their purview.
The 2 semi-notable exceptions to this are Virginia, where VHSL has run a poor quality state tournament that marginally improved with Shawn Pickrell writing, and Illinois where the IHSA runs state. However, in Virginia a very important defining feature of their circuit is that VHSL has none of the draconian restrictions of MSHSAA - teams can travel as much as they want, can attend as many tournaments as they want, attend any KIND of tournament they want, and don't have to go through miles of paperwork to try and get state approval for things. In the same vein, the Virginia format is not used ANYWHERE outside of districts, regionals, state, and conferences that I understand aren't played by dedicated teams mostly. Unlike in Missouri, the vast majority of the circuit isn't some kind of outgrowth of their state format - instead all of the active teams regularly attend events on more standard formats by other writers. A Virginia insider just informed me that this season alone there are going to be 6 tournaments using HSAPQ, at least 2 NAQT tournaments, and 8 events that were housewrites or mirrors that were pyramidal and I think all used the 20/20, non-computational ACF format. Also bear in mind, especially with the NAQT numbers, that there are lots of tournaments right outside of the state border that are also very good that lots of Virginia teams attend. In summary for Virginia, the reason their circuit has had all kinds of ability to thrive is not because a state organization took over, but because the organization never clamped down on them and all of the teams that actually cared about being good at quizbowl decided to ignore VHSL and instead prepare for everything else like nationals (some teams have been known to have so little regard for VHSL districts that they send their B team to play it while their A team goes out of town for a better tournament). None of these features play into Missouri's favor, making our state a huge morass comparatively.
In Illinois, their system is far less successful, but even there there are some improvements to what goes on in Missouri. IHSA lets schools attend college events, and through some loopholes in their rules, allows teams to attend more quizbowl tournaments than they are supposed to have dates for. IHSA has also in recent years attempted at a system of producing what are supposed to be regular pyramidal questions, although that has been poorly run given the fact the state just turned it into a dumb bureaucratic process without a central editor who knows what to do. The format is also standard tossup and bonus (20/20 most of the time) However, there are still very big problems - lots of computation, lots of weird distribution, an awful bonus format, and lots of coaches who do not want change. Something that is amazingly consistent is that every time an Illinois team does well on pyramidal questions is not pleased with everything else. There are lots of very bad tournaments in Illinois, but there are now enough ticked off schools that there is a season's worth of good events that all the top teams go to, along with maybe some college stuff, and teams work towards nationals there. All of the defining features that make both VHSL and IHSA improvements to varying degrees are that the top teams have decided they have something more important to care about, and have some degree of freedom to pursue those things with a full schedule. Missouri has neither of these characteristics yet, and tons of things working against it to get these things to fall in place. You and the folks at MSHSAA may not believe it, but this really is not how it's done in other states AT ALL, and I'm not sure it's really understood by some people here that this state is truly a national laughingstock.
Speaking of hsquizbowl, I am still most interested in seeing that proposed post defending math computation to the whole country.
Quote:
Ripping companies on message boards does not help improve our chances of receiving such bids.

A currently active student I talked to made the point that I think bears repeating about this comment, namely that the companies being ripped are pretty much the ones that are bad for quizbowl in the first place. The reason Questions Galore and Avery have been so widely panned is not because people are ungrateful, but because they routinely produce questions that are far below the standards of quality that students should have the right to expect. The writers that ARE wanted to write the state contract by a vocal group of people - NAQT or HSAPQ - will in all likelihood never bid until the whole format is overhauled, creating a vicious cycle where the only people who bid are the bad writers who are impervious to being ripped, which are certainly the worst kind.


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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
<- The aforementioned currently active student.


Thu Mar 26, 2009 5:59 am
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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
FZW Coach wrote:
Does anyone have knowledge or can direct me to a link of the formats used in other states?
Unfortunately, no such compendium exists to my knowledge. Charlie has a good suggestion in perusing the hsquizbowl board, but he's right in that WUHSAC and the NAQT events that we run are the closest you'll find.

Something else you might want to try is NAQT's list of state oversight organizations for high school quiz bowl. Most of these links do not detail state formats, but they're great sources of information nonetheless. Maybe you can contact some people and find out.

http://www.naqt.com/hs/state-organizations.html

Charlie brings up a lot of good points in that quiz bowl in only a handful of states has any regulation from state activities associations (a la MSHSAA). After the experience here in Missouri, I guarantee no other state will ever allow it. The rules here in Missouri are so unenlightened (for lack of a better term) that we're widely perceived outside of Missouri as a quiz bowl backwater. I've done all I can to try to correct this perception.

I have a lot more to say on this, but I have to go to work. :( More to come. . . .


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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
ashkenaziCD wrote:
However, in Virginia a very important defining feature of their circuit is that VHSL has none of the draconian restrictions of MSHSAA - teams can travel as much as they want, can attend as many tournaments as they want, attend any KIND of tournament they want, and don't have to go through miles of paperwork to try and get state approval for things. In the same vein, the Virginia format is not used ANYWHERE outside of districts, regionals, state, and conferences that I understand aren't played by dedicated teams mostly. ..... In summary for Virginia, the reason their circuit has had all kinds of ability to thrive is not because a state organization took over, but because the organization never clamped down on them and all of the teams that actually cared about being good at quizbowl decided to ignore VHSL and instead prepare for everything else like nationals (some teams have been known to have so little regard for VHSL districts that they send their B team to play it while their A team goes out of town for a better tournament). None of these features play into Missouri's favor, making our state a huge morass comparatively.
THIS. I understand there are a lot of teams that wouldn't exist if it weren't for MSHSAA's involvement, and several teams support the Missouri format for various reasons. That's fine, but don't punish teams that want to do better on a national scale by imposing the 250 mile restriction, 14 tournament restriction, October-April season, requiring sanctioning forms, etc. If MSHSAA gets rid of rules like this that restrict teams from attending whatever tournaments they want (which stifle LEARNING by essentially restricting their quizbowl experience to a single format), quizbowl in Missouri would be so much better. Then maybe you wouldn't see such animosity toward MSHSAA from everyone.


Thu Mar 26, 2009 7:50 am
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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
Just quickly, I want to mention that the wikipedia (not the QB Wiki) article on "quizbowl" includes the standard state formats of a number of states, but it is certainly not a complete list nor can I speak for its accuracy. Missouri is considered something of a quizbowl backwater as Paul, Charlie, and others have mentioned. The format is one thing that people point to, but it is not so radically different from national norms as say Kansas or Florida. That is partly what makes the problem so frustrating. Most of the changes that people are arguing for are relatively small ones that will make a big difference in both the short and long terms.

Mr. Gibbs, do you think MSHSAA would be open to eliminating the current low-bid policy and perhaps offer a flat payment for the chosen question provider? You mentioned that pricing was not an issue. Supposing the majority of coaches want to keep the current 50/20 format, would MSHSAA be willing to put more money behind it? Since it requires about double the questions as a more standard 20/20 contest, would MSHSAA be willing to pay twice as much or more per round to keep it? NAQT, HSAPQ and other quality pyramidal question writers may still balk at the distribution of subjects, but I would think they might come around to write questions if they knew they would be paid reasonably for their services and would not be underbid.


Thu Mar 26, 2009 12:53 pm
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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
U. Lou Sthagaim wrote:
ashkenaziCD wrote:
However, in Virginia a very important defining feature of their circuit is that VHSL has none of the draconian restrictions of MSHSAA - teams can travel as much as they want, can attend as many tournaments as they want, attend any KIND of tournament they want, and don't have to go through miles of paperwork to try and get state approval for things. In the same vein, the Virginia format is not used ANYWHERE outside of districts, regionals, state, and conferences that I understand aren't played by dedicated teams mostly. ..... In summary for Virginia, the reason their circuit has had all kinds of ability to thrive is not because a state organization took over, but because the organization never clamped down on them and all of the teams that actually cared about being good at quizbowl decided to ignore VHSL and instead prepare for everything else like nationals (some teams have been known to have so little regard for VHSL districts that they send their B team to play it while their A team goes out of town for a better tournament). None of these features play into Missouri's favor, making our state a huge morass comparatively.
THIS. I understand there are a lot of teams that wouldn't exist if it weren't for MSHSAA's involvement, and several teams support the Missouri format for various reasons. That's fine, but don't punish teams that want to do better on a national scale by imposing the 250 mile restriction, 14 tournament restriction, October-April season, requiring sanctioning forms, etc. If MSHSAA gets rid of rules like this that restrict teams from attending whatever tournaments they want (which stifle LEARNING by essentially restricting their quizbowl experience to a single format), quizbowl in Missouri would be so much better. Then maybe you wouldn't see such animosity toward MSHSAA from everyone.
QFT. FOR THE UMPTEENTH TIME OVER A DECADE.


Thu Mar 26, 2009 10:53 pm
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Post General Questions Galore comments post Lexington
By the way, this gets filled out tomorrow. I hope you guys have minutes of your meetings for me.

http://ago.mo.gov/sunshinelaw/requestform.htm


Thu Mar 26, 2009 11:00 pm
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