The SMU Debate team finished tenth after seven preliminary rounds at the William DeMougeot University of North Texas debate tournament January 7-9, according to an SMU press release.
First-years Muteranymi Nintunze and Sam Bhagwandin represented SMU as a team, scoring 4-3 after debating seven two-hour rounds on the question: “whether the United States should significantly reduce its military presence in one or more of the following: the Arab states of the Persian Gulf, the Greater Horn of Africa or Northeast Asia.” Each debate required cross examination of hundreds of pages of research while engaging in public argumentation across eight different speeches.
Nintunze and Bhagwandin won in the octofinal elimination in a 2-1 decision against Wichita State University, currently ranked in the top 50 debate teams in the nation.
Amid the victory for SMU, Bhagwandin also won 6th as a speaker at the tournament overall.
On the final day of the tournament, SMU faced the University of Central Oklahoma and ultimately lost on a 2-1 decision, placing tenth.
This win is the best performance by the SMU debate program in varsity debate in over 10 years.
SMU will debate again at the University of Texas at Austin for a policy tournament in early February.