State College

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State College Area High School
State College, PA
Coaches Sheila Abruzzo, Kerry O'Melia
State Championships 2009, 2010
National Championships NSC: 1998 NSC, 1999 NSC, 2000 NSC, 2001 NSC, 2010 NSC, 2011 NSC
NAC: 1998 NAC
ACF DII: 2010, 2011
National Appearances numerous
Program Status Unknown
School Size Unknown
NAQT Page link

The State College Area High School is a public high school team in State College, Pennsylvania. One of the greatest programs in the modern era of quizbowl, the State College dynasty has won six PACE NSCs, two HSNCTs, and one NAC. During that time State College was coached by Julie Gittings, who was the recipient of the 2007 Benjamin Cooper Academic Ambassador Award for her unprecedented achievements. They also did Knowledge Masters, which won seven times, Science Bowl, and Ocean Bowl. Mount Nittany and Park Forest are State College's feeder middle schools.

For a period in the mid-2000s, State College hosted SCAT, a spring NAQT IS-A Tournament.


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The State College quizbowl team has its origins in the Knowledge Master Open club.

The team has had two eras of near-complete national dominance in high school quizbowl: once in the late 1990s-early 2000s, and again in the late 2000s-early 2010s.

The 2010 season saw State College claim both the ACF Division II and PACE NSC championship titles. That same year, members of State College competing as Team Pennsylvania won the inaugural NASAT over South Carolina.

Julie Gittings retired from teaching in 2011 and was replaced as quizbowl coach by Karin Sutherland. Since 2012, State College has been much less dominant on the national stage, though the team has remained a statewide powerhouse.


  • They are the only team to win either a particular national or any national in four straight years, by winning all four PACE NSC tournaments from 1998 to 2001. They also won an NAC title and an NAQT title during that timeframe. Until Thomas Jefferson in 2019, State College was the only team to successfully defend its title as NSC champion (and did so again in 2011).
  • State College holds the record for a game-by-game winning streak at the PACE NSC. Their 37-victory streak is bookended by playoff bracket losses to Henry Ford II in 1998 and Georgetown Day in 2001.


Former Coaches

  • Smita Gandhi
  • Julie Gittings (1997-2011)
  • Matthew Patton (2011-2020)

Succession of titles

ACF Nationals Division II Champion
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Ike Jose
State College
ACF Nationals Division II Champion
Preceded by
Succeeded by
State College

Succession of minor titles

NAC Champion
Preceded by
Succeeded by
James Island