SVUDL Ryan Mills Invitational

2023 — NSDA Campus, CA/US

Update - March 2, 2023

All debate events (Parli, LD, PF, and Policy) will be held online via NSDA Campus.

Due to power outages affecting the Campbell and Cupertino areas, Speech and Congress will be held ONLINE via NSDA Campus.

Dear Colleagues,

The Silicon Valley Urban Debate League (SVUDL) presents:

The SVUDL Ryan Mills Memorial Invitational. March 18-19

All proceeds from this tournament will go to the Silicon Valley Urban Debate League, a local non-profit organization whose mission is to empower Silicon Valley students, regardless of their race or socioeconomic status, to reach their full potential to become professional and community leaders by teaching critical thinking and communication skills through speech and debate programming.

Ryan Mills was a volunteer with the Silicon Valley Urban Debate League (SVUDL) since its inception 7 years ago, through and until his untimely passing in March of 2021. Ryan was the consummate professional and a model volunteer, judging hundreds of rounds of competition for SVUDL over the years. He was one of the most sought after judges by our students, for not only his expansive debate knowledge, but also for the care in which he gave constructive feedback and shared resources, all with the idea of helping them grow as competitors and young adults. He was also an advocate for SVUDL in the wider community, building bridges that let our students access deeper coaching and opportunities to aid in their professional growth as well.

This will be a hybrid tournament. We will offer Speech and Congress in person at Westmont High School. Debate events (PF, LD, Parli, and Policy) will be held online via NSDA Campus.

All tournament registration will be on Information regarding online platform use for the tournament will be released in the coming weeks.

If you have any questions regarding the tournament or registration, please email Tournament Director Mariel Cruz at or contact SVUDL at


The system will accept new entries until March 13th at 8pm PST. Make drops and name changes through Tabroom after that up until the tournament begins. Fees will be frozen on Thursday, March 16 at 8pm PST. However, changes or drops made after Friday, March 17 at 8pm PST will be charged a $10 nuisance fee. All space in debate and speech will be allocated on a first come, first served based on the tournament caps listed below; register early!

Tournament Caps and Waitlist

Due to the size of the tournament, we will be placing caps on the debate events. Each school will be allotted 6 entries per division per debate event. All entries over the caps will be waitlisted.

Entries may also be waitlisted if the tournament reaches capacity. Schools will be moved off the waitlist as space opens up. Schools that have not already taken up their allotted slots in each event will be moved first, and schools with completed judge entries will also be given preference. Remaining waitlisted entries will be moved on a first-come, first-serve basis.

TBA Entries

All TBA Entries will be waitlisted until names are entered. The deadline to enter names for TBA entries will be March 8, 2023. Any TBA entries without names after this date will be removed from the tournament.

Judging Requirements

Schools are required to fulfill at least 50% of their debate and events requirement when fees are assessed on Thursday, March 16. That means, you can’t buy out of more than 50% of your judge commitment. Please see the list of fees for uncovered judge fees. Judge hire requests must be submitted by Friday, March 10 at 8pm PST. After this date, schools will be responsible for providing their own judges.

Schools will pay a judging penalty fee per speech slot, Congress entry, Lincoln Douglas/Duo Interp or debate team not covered by school judges. Please note, Congress judges may be asked to also judge speech since they will be in the same pattern and judge pool.


Judge Coverage


1 judge covers 3 teams


1 judge covers 2 teams

Public Forum

1 judge covers 2 teams

Lincoln Douglas

1 judge covers 4 debaters

Individual Speech Events

1 judge covers 6 entries


1 judge covers 6 entries

Judges are committed one round past where their school drops from competition. Judges are assumed to be experienced and prepared to judge their assigned events or debate formats. Debate judges are free to determine style questions at the beginning of each round. Debate judges must have properly linked Tabroom accounts for online ballot entry. School judges who fail to check in to their rounds online when assigned may have their team fined the aforementioned penalties per round. Please contact us if you're unsure of your judging commitment, or have any other questions regarding judging.


Use this form to compute how much you will owe at registration:

Please note, all fees include a 3% surcharge to cover transaction fees for online payments. All schools paying by check will be eligible for a 3% discount on fees. If your school will be paying with a check, not paying online, please email and your invoice will be adjusted for this discount.


__1__ School Fee X $52 = $52

____ number of Event entries/Congress entered X $26 = _____

____ number of Parli teams/PF teams X $72 = _____

____ number of LD entries X $52 = _____

____ number of Policy Teams X $72 = _____

Penalties for Not Providing School Judges:

You are obligated to cover 50% of your judging requirement in debate and events with school judges.

____ Speech Event entries/Congress entries uncovered X $52 = _____

____ LD Entries/Public Forum teams X $77 = _____

_____Parli/Policy entries uncovered X $103 = _____

Total Fees = ____________

Please email if you are paying by check to ensure you receive the 3% discount. Please make checks payable to “Silicon Valley Urban Debate League” and mail to:

Silicon Valley Urban Debate League

502 Valley Way

Milpitas, CA 95035

Online payments can be made here -

If your school needs a W9, please email for this information.

Following the mission of SVUDL, we would like to ensure that this tournament is made accessible to all teams that would like to participate. We understand that the current situation of COVID-19 may have put schools in unprecedented financial situations. If your school/program has concerns or issues regarding fees, please email for information regarding fee discounts.


L/D Debate Topic: NSDA Mar/Apr topic

Policy Debate Topic: National topic on Water Policy

Public Forum: NSDA April Public Forum Topic OR NSDA March Public Forum Topic

For parli, one topic will be provided for each prelim; for elim rounds, teams may be given three topics and will do strikes to determine the topic.


All speech and debate events will offer a novice and open division. We reserve the right to collapse divisions if entry size is too small for two separate divisions.

Novice is defined as a student’s first year of competition, or not advancing to an elimination round in your first two years of competition, regardless of debate format.

Double entries in Speech Events and Congress are allowed. Debate entries may not double enter.

General Tournament Rules

School registration in part or whole may be rejected due to space considerations - please register early! Every year several schools cannot attend or have their entries restricted.

The tournament will consist of six preliminary debate rounds for varsity, five prelims debate rounds for novice, and the three preliminary rounds of varsity and open events. We reserve the right to combine divisions if the entry warrants.

Persuasive will include both advocacy (Original Advocacy) and other "persuasive" speeches (Original Oratory). Extemp is combined national and international. Semifinals will be held in individual events with 50 or more entries or the discretion of the tournament director. Undersubscribed events may waive finals. Due to scheduling, we will only be breaking to Double octos for debate, events, entries permitting.


Please designate the PO's with a 'po' for every ten entries via email to

Bills will be posted on the tournament webpage on a couple weeks prior to the start of the tournament. To submit bills for consideration, please email, with the subject line - Congress Bills, SVUDL tournament.

SCHEDULE - March 18-19

Friday, March 17 - 5pm-8pm - Online Registration via Tabroom

Saturday, March 18

Debate Round 1 - 8:30am

Debate Round 2 - 11:30am

Debate Round 3 - 2:30pm

Debate Round 4 - 5:30pm

Sunday, April 3

Debate Round 5 - 8:30am

Debate Elim 1 - 11:30am

Debate Elim 2 - 2:30pm

Debate Elim 3 - 4:30pm

Debate Elim 4 - 6:30pm

Debate Elim 5* - 8:00pm

*only if needed

Due to power outages affecting the Campbell and Cupertino areas, Speech and Congress will be held ONLINE via NSDA Campus on Saturday, March 18th, 2023 ONLY. There will be no Congress or Speech rounds on Sunday.

Saturday, March 18th, 2023

7:30 AM - Judging Instructions for Speech and Congress

8:00 AM - Speech R1 - Extemp Prep at 7:45 AM (Congress double entries speak early)

8:30 AM - Congress R1

10:30 AM - Speech R2 - Extemp Prep at 10:15 AM (Congress double entries speak late)

11:30 AM - Congress R2

12:45 PM Speech R3 - Extemp Prep at 12:30 PM (Cross entered students speak last)

2:00 PM Congress R3

3:00 PM Speech Elim 1, Extemp Prep at 2:45 PM

4:15 PM Congress Finals

4:45 PM Speech Elim 2, (Congress cross entered students speak last)

ASAP - Awards