Noah Mengisteab ParadigmLast changed 7/20 3:38P EDT
Head Coach Duchesne Academy (2017-2020)
Private Coach for Interlake (2018-present)
Marist '16// Rice University '20
Important for 2019-2020 Season:
Evidence - I HIGHLY recommend reading card text or at least referring to an accurately cut card in the constructive and rebuttal, not just hyperlinks. These are properly cut cards (Thank you Christian Vasquez for the link). If you don't cut cards then you might want to consider striking me.
There a few reasons why I'm going to be more strict about using cut cards. Cut cards promote better research and debate ethics. I understand trying to fit as many sources as possible into speeches, but lying about what your evidence says ruins the ethos of the round and cheats everyone of the educational and competitive components of this activity. And I'm tired of calling for evidence that contradicts the warrant read in round.
*** FOR ONLINE TOURNAMENTS - IF YOUR CARD ISN'T CUT AND I CALL FOR IT, I WON'T CONSIDER IT.
Disclosure -Disclosure can happen in two ways - either through the wiki or by emailing your opponents and myself prior to the round. While I won't penalize for nondisclosure, you will get +0.3 speaker points for disclosing or sending me case & speech docs and +0.5 for doing both. Misdisclosure is an auto-loss and lowest speaker points allowed.
Accommodations - I'm 100% fine with any accommodations debaters might need. Just communicate what you need before the round. Opponents will also receive the same benefits. If you are an opposing team that disagrees with reasonable accommodations, get over it and just debate.
My views on Public Forum evolved the past season based on observations of rounds and conversations I've had with debaters/coaches. Below are some general things I expect to see when I judge your round as well as my thoughts on progressive debate.
1.) I look at the round through an offense/defense paradigm - you have to adequately defend your offense and place defense on your opponents. To me, just having defense is not enough unless you warrant why your terminal defense should be preferred over any offense from the opposing team.
On my flow, offense requires a link/warrant, an impact, and frontlining. Miss one and it will be harder for me to flow your offense.
2.) Speeches must build off of each other. It’s not enough to just read some offense or defense in one speech and only extend it at the very end in the Final Focus. Rebuttals need to be line-by-line with 2nd rebuttals frontlining major turns for at least 30-60 seconds. Any offense or defense you want me to look at on my flow needs to be cleanly extended, especially in the Summary and the Final Focus.
3a.) The Summary and Final Focus MUST MIRROR EACH OTHER! Any OVs, observations, offense, and defense you want me to look at needs to be in BOTH SPEECHES! The burden to extend defense in the summary rests on both teams. I don't care about the 1st speaking team disadvantage in summary because there are other advantages in the round.
3b.) Defense and Offense Structure - Defense on "their case" doesn’t mean you extend every arg from the rebuttal, but extending the most important ones with good analysis (like turns). Offense is super simple - any offense you want me to consider at the end of the round must be in summary. Refer above for the requirements of a proper extension. Please also DO WARRANTED & COMPARATIVE WEIGHING! I have no problem dropping you because you didn’t do a good job extending or weighing in the round. Also, most teams are really bad at line by line. Save yourself and do VOTERS!!!
4.) Evidence – You can expect that I have done quite a bit of research on the topic and will understand most topic args. For the most part, I don’t interfere with the debate and will flow and vote on any arg presented (basically tech over truth). The only times I will interfere (and most likely vote you down) would be when the args/examples presented are blatantly racist, sexist, homophobic, anything ridiculous like "extinction/terrorism good," or when I know a piece of evidence being read is completely misrepresented. I will call for evidence if debaters ask me to or if I find it important in my decision. Cards should be properly cut (refer to the message at the top). And evidence exchange needs to be quick - I will give you 1 min to find evidence. If you go over it, I will start deducting prep time. We need to keep rounds on time. And when a team is finding evidence, no one should be prepping.
Also, it's up to the debaters in the round to call each other out and issue a formal evidence ethics challenge if I don't call for a card.
5.) Disclosure - Refer to the disclosure message above. You should disclose at national circuit tournaments/championships.
6.) Decisions - No matter the tournament (unless explicitly told not to like NSDAs), I will always give a decision and detailed RFD a few minutes after the round. I am constantly thinking about who is winning along with an RFD in my mind and on my flow after each speech. If for some reason you don’t want me to disclose who won, let me know. I'm also willing to answer more questions outside the round and email my flows for you to see how I evaluated the round.
Plans/CPs/DAs - I've always been okay with “specific” plans, “pseudo” CPs, and DAs because I used them during my debate career. Just make sure you "fit" them within PF and the resolution. Debaters who complain about the rules of PF debate when it comes to plans and CPs – get over it and debate.
Kritics - I'm okay with the generic K's people try to run (i.e. Feminism, Capitalism, Securitization, etc.) but I am not familiar with high theory (i.e. Baudrillard, Bataille, Nietzsche).
Theory - Theory is the highest layer of debate. I am okay with just a paragraph or a full shell. For me to extend your theory argument, you need to read it as soon as the abuse occurs. Additionally, theory needs to be extended throughout the debate. Otherwise, it becomes disingenuous and your speaker points will suffer. Evidence of abuse is also needed for theory (especially disclosure related shells). Extending theory your opponents drop is a TKO (auto-win and +0.5 speaks). These theory preferences (except reading disclosure) applies to any tournament round I judge.
1.) Preflow before the round*** otherwise -0.3 speaker points.
2.) Crossfires - It's usually not important to my ballot and I don't flow them. I think it’s more for y'all to clarify your args to each other. If something significant is said in cross-fire, then bring up immediately in the next speech to make it binding. Also, be nice to each other.
3.) Speed - I am okay if you go fast (6-7/10), so long as you are clear. I reserve the right to ask for a speech doc if you went to fast.
[I used to say "micro" spreading but bc of the war against jargon by Jeff Miller & Lyndsey Oliver, I took it out...]
4.) Speaker points - For me, speaker points take into account analysis and persuasiveness. However, debate is an educational activity that requires good use of evidence, so I lean more towards analysis. Scale from 27-30 with everyone starting at a 27. If you get below a 25, you did something unethical in the round. Typically, speaks I give tournaments range from 27-29. Don't expect a 30 just because you won the round.
Yes, add me to your email chain.
I didn't do LD in HS, but I've judged some LD rounds the past two years and coach it in a traditional circuit. My paradigm for LD is similar to PF in that I will still look at the round on an offense/defense paradigm. I'll flow any argument you want to present to me (Ks, CPs, DAs, Theory, etc.). Speed is the same as PF. Don't spread. If you have specific questions, ask me before the round. At national circuit tournaments, LD should always disclose positions on the wiki.
Questions? Ask before the round