ACF Nationals is an annual event held by ACF. Along with the NAQT ICT, ACF Nationals is one of the two tournaments which determine a national champion each year in collegiate quizbowl.
Beginning in 2008, ACF Nationals crowned Undergraduate and Division II champions in addition to overall champions. Unlike at NAQT ICT, the Division II title is awarded to the highest-finishing Division II team in the overall field, rather than being played in a separate tournament. Unofficial winners by the current criteria are noted for pre-2008 tournaments, when known.
For most of its existence, ACF Nationals was smaller than ICT, and was open to any collegiate team, provided that most of those teams submitted a packet (unlike ICT, which had a strict system of invitations and was written entirely by NAQT personnel). In 2015, in part due to exploding interest in nationals attendance, ACF instituted the A-Value, a measure which generated a list of Nationals invitees based on teams' performance at the preceding ACF Regionals. As of now, the Nationals field is capped, and teams are invited by having a large enough A-value for the year, or by being issued autobids for hosting or editing Regionals.
Some additional kinds of information on editors and circumstances of ACF Nationals can be found at the ACF page.
There are three ways of looking at when ACF Nationals began:
- Most commonly, the national tournaments run by the Academic Competition Foundation from 1991 to 1997 are considered as part of the same series of events as those run by the Academic Competition Federation from 1998 onwards. While the two organizations are technically distinct, one picked up directly from the other with the exact same philosophy about tournament structure and question content, and many of the same personnel. Under this definition, by far the generally accepted one, ACF Nationals first ran in 1991 and the 2022 tournament was the 30th instance of the event (accounting for no tournament in 1992 and 2020).
- If only the present "ACF" entity is counted, then ACF Nationals began in 1998 and the 2022 tournament was the 24th instance. This distinction is almost never made, particularly because the Federation version of ACF was not incorporated as a legal entity until later in the 2010s, meaning that the 1991-1997 version is technically just as valid as anything that happened from 1998 until quite recently.
- The 1991 version of ACF was the direct successor, in ideology and personnel, to prior events such as the National Invitation Tournament (1979-1985) and All-American Invitational (1988-1989). Considering the three events as one chain of "ACF-style" national championships, the tournament is 43 years old as of 2022 and has run 38 times. There is no information about the 1979 and 1980 NITs other than that they occurred. The NIT/AAI series did not run a championship in 1982, 1986, 1987, or 1990.
ACF Nationals Master Info Table
Expanded Top Finishers Table
Champions whose names are in bold were undefeated.
|Team||Championships||Total Top 2 Finishes||Total Top 3 Finishes||Total Top 4 Finishes|
- The tournament was not held in 1992 or 2020.
- There are no surviving stats from 1991 or 1993; as such, the all-stars are unknown. 1994 stats do not contain full individual information and only contain team stats + the names of the top four all-stars.
- Undergraduate and Division II titles prior to 2008 are retroactive. In years listed as N/A, the stats do not contain enough information to retroactively determine Undergraduate and Division II eligibility.
- No DII-eligible teams participated in 2006.
- The 2002 tournament was originally announced as "hosted by George Washington University;" however, it had to be moved to Maryland due to room access issues at GWU, and most of the staff was recruited by Maryland. GWU assisted in running the tournament.
- ACF Nationals had champion teams from ten distinct schools in the ten years from 2013 to 2022.
- National Invitation Tournament
- All-American Invitational
- List of college quizbowl national champion teams