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Dan Pugh and Sarah Snyder just won the Vector-hosted R9 tournament with this case. Coaches Isaiah and Amy McPeak decided to debate them in club through the 1AR. The point was two-fold:

1. To demonstrate better speaking skills we have been emphasizing.

2. To use some complex theory on the counterplan/topicality issue.

I should explain both of these…

1. We have been emphasizing:

– Start every debate speech with an intro (read Debate JD = Speech 101)

– Have crisp tags that are easy to flow

– Don’t be a machine…use some humor and personality

– THINK WITH YOUR BRAIN. Should the government even be doing this?

2. This is difficult to understand. But say you are against a case that SEEMS non-topical. So non-topical, in fact, that the counterplan you have prepared and didn’t support the resolution NOW DOES. You don’t want the aff to come and argue that the CP can’t support the resolution (and end up arguing topicality and parametrics every speech the rest of the round), so strategically you can try and preempt this with a gentlemen’s agreement: we’ll drop OUR topicality press against the Aff case, if THEY will allow our CP to go uncontested on topicality. I ran the T-press very quickly (1 minute), with a standard of Education (which I usually discourage), because if they had gone after the counterplan’s topicality, we would have both kept our topicality argument against the case AND kritiked them for making the round about theory instead of about GMOs (leveraging our education standard). None of that happened so it’s hard to imagine it.

Is this theory WAY OUT THERE? Yes. Don’t usually try this at home… it’s more of a theoretical position and I’ve only used it in collegiate debate (where you can just ask the other team, ‘hey will you not run T if we drop this T press?’ and they go ‘yeah’ and then we drop it). But it is good to think about if you get what I’m saying.

I shouldn’t need to say this, but of course we as coaches are better at telling people what to do than doing it… blah blah.

Other things to notice: Sarah Snyder’s 1AR completely focuses on the right issues for the aff team (what they have strongest chances of winning and outweighing on), CX questions are strong and pointed from both sides and both teams use points made in CX in speeches also, 1nc’s criterion-level debate previews DAs and so works sort of like shell-and-extend, and negative team chose too many arguments.

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