JMU College Invitational

2023 — Harrisonburg, VA/US

Hello friends,

James Madison University invites you to Harrisonburg, VA from January 27-29th for a weekend of in-person debate. We will offer three divisions of debate and hope that you choose to join us! We apologize that we are not able to provide for online competitors or judges at this time.


Entries will be accepted in all three divisions (novice, junior varsity, and varsity). Hybrids are eligible to clear. In each division, there will be six preliminary rounds of debate competition on the 2022-2023 CEDA resolution. The entry deadline is January 24th at noon (teams dropping after that time will be assessed entry fees). JMU teams will be entered and will be eligible to clear and receive speaker awards.


Judging philosophies as a precondition of entry must be posted at no later than January 24th. Each school must provide 3 rounds of prelim judging. Judges must vote for one and only one team in each debate. All judges are required to judge in the first elimination round and one round beyond the elimination of their squad. Judges may be released if teams request to leave but request will be entirely contingent upon availability with other judges. If schools are not able to cover their elimination round obligations or leave without permission, they will be assessed fines and/or have awards withheld. Folks, we don’t want to do either of those things but also can’t have folks just informing us they will leave whether we like it or not. We need judges to have quality elimination rounds, we all know the logistics of judging, so let’s do our jobs and not plan on just ditching our judging obligations. Yes, your outside hires are required to judge elimination rounds.

Each judge will have 2:30 from the announced start time of each debate to render a decision.


Participating teams and schools are expected to contribute to the opencaselist as a precondition for entry and should provide their most recent affirmative and negative information by January 20th (at the latest). This should include an outline of the arguments sufficient for novice comprehension as well as full citations. Teams and schools are expected to cooperate with JMU students and staff assigned to gather the material.

Tournament Staff:

The tournament will be staffed by individuals from at least three different debate programs. If you are interested in working in the tab room please contact me as we would like to expand opportunities for those who normally are not asked to participate.


All rounds (defined as the speeches of the participants) are open to registered tournament participants and may be electronically recorded for private educational use by tournament participants (registered coaches, debaters and helpers, and JMU tournament staff) only. Public distribution of such recordings is expressly prohibited unless prior written consent of all people on the recording is obtained and unless prior written consent of James Madison University is obtained. Private sharing for educational use is permitted.


We are working on setting up a hotel rate with our on campus hotel, Hotel Madison. We will update this when we have that information.


In addition to dinner on Friday, breakfast, lunch and dinner on Saturday and breakfast and lunch on Sunday we will provide hospitality throughout. We plan to provide all meals buffet style with significant healthy alternatives.


All participants debate at the invitation of James Madison University according to its tournament rules as well as any rules of their sponsoring institutions. The tournament abides by the rules and norms of the American Forensics Association, the American Debate Association (pending approval), and the Cross Examination Debate Association.


Parking will be the JMU K-lot, 1046 S Main St, Harrisonburg. Busses may drop off in K-lot but need to park at perimeter R3 Parking Lot at 1161 Harrison St, Harrisonburg.


$85.00 per person. That includes up to six meals. Any school that needs a fee reduction due to economic hardship should contact us as soon as you know you are planning on attending.


Working on it. Details will be updated.


Friday, January 27th

1:30-3:00 Complete online check-in

3:30 Round 1 & 2 Pairings released

4:30 Round One

6:15 Dinner Served

7:00 Round Two

Saturday, January 28th

8:00 Round 3 & 4 Pairings released

9:00 Round Three

11:30 Round Four

2:00 Lunch

3:30 Round Five

6:00 Round Six

8:00 Dinner and Speaker Awards

Sunday, January 29th

8:00 Pairings Released Online and On Campus

9:00 First Elim

11:30 Second Elim

2:00 Lunch

3:00 Elims continue as necessary