Matt Weiner

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Matt Weiner
MattWeiner.JPG
Noted Subjects:
General, History, Religion
Current Collegiate Team none
Past Collegiate Teams Pitt (2001-2002) VCU (player 2003-2007, team advisor 2007-2015), J. Sargeant Reynolds CC (2014)
High School Team Maggie Walker (1998-2000)
Middle School Team None

Matt Weiner (IPA: /ˈwi.nɚ/) was one of greatest quizbowl players in the history of the game, and perhaps the most important figure in promoting the expansion of good quizbowl in the modern era. Across his 17-year career, he played for school teams at the Governor's School, Pitt, and VCU, and served as a writer, editor, advisor, tournament director, and organizer for VCU, ACF, PACE, NAQT, HSAPQ, and NHBB as well as many independent events. Weiner is the founder and long-time owner of the Quizbowl Resource Center, where he served as a forums administrator from 2003 to 2015, and won the 2004 Benjamin Cooper Young Ambassador Award, the 2011 Benjamin Cooper Academic Ambassador Award, and the 2013 Carper Award for his efforts.

Playing

Weiner's playing career began on one of the first high school teams that systematically studied past quizbowl questions at the Governor's School of Richmond, which was renamed for Maggie Walker soon after his graduation (serving as team captain under then-new head coach John Barnes). He then played in college at Pitt and for VCU, playing every tournament solo and racking up many individual scoring titles for much of his time at the latter institution. Matt's just-as-long career at open tournaments thereafter included winning the inaugural Minnesota Open with Charlie Dees, and leading the victorious team at Chicago Open for an unmatched span of four years straight, from 2007 to 2010, with non-overlapping sets of teammates each time. His apparently-final tournament performance, at the Maryland site of George Oppen in February 2015, was also a victory for his team, on which he played alongside Matt Jackson, Jerry Vinokurov, and Tejas Raje.

In all, Weiner claimed the NAQT ICT DI scoring title four times, including three in succession from 2005-07, both of which are records for the tournament. With his 2001 scoring title in DII, Weiner became the first (and as of 2016, only) player to win scoring titles in both DI and DII. He added scoring titles at the 2005 and 2007 ACF Nationals.

Writing

Matt was a critical force in sustaining good quizbowl by editing dozens of tournaments over a span of about 15 years. Some of his most notable editing jobs include:

Matt has, however, been criticized for not being a meticulous editor, for writing confusing common link tossups, and for finishing many of his tournaments at the last minute (and on occasion having to cancel them outright, as with College History Bowl 2013 and 2015). Ryan Westbrook once called him the "Gilbert Arenas volume shooter of quizbowl." [1]

Matt was the founding CEO of HSAPQ and served on the company's board as Chairman from that position's establishment until 2015, and also wrote and subject-edited for NAQT for a short period in the mid-2010s.

After the contract between NHBB and HSAPQ was not renewed for the 2014-15 year, Matt was hired full-time as Head Writer for all events under the History Bowl and History Bee aegis worldwide, a position he held from July 2014 until his March 2015 resignation.

Quizbowl Advocacy

Matt Weiner has been one of the most important advocates of good quizbowl in the modern era. His roles editing the PACE NSC for seven years, directing that tournament thereafter in 2009, 2012, and 2013, and mentoring new members helped establish that organization's reputation. In 2003, he created the hsquizbowl.org forums (now the Quizbowl Resource Center), and oversaw the integration of quizbowlpackets.com and Jeffrey Hill's ScoBo results database into that site as the Quizbowl Resource Database in 2012. Matt has also been an important leader for quizbowl in the state of Virginia since his graduation by serving as an informal coach to VCU, and has mentored several high school players such as Tommy Casalaspi and Sarah Angelo by holding summer practices at VCU. Starting in 2010, he also oversaw the transition of VHSL, previously a much-maligned event, to a partnership with HSAPQ, which now means that 90% of all high schools in the state of Virginia are part of an institution that uses good questions and can be prepared for in the same way as weekend tournaments. For many years he also staffed or directed a tournament almost every weekend, including ACF Nationals 2009, 2012, 2013, and 2014.

On March 5th, 2015, Weiner resigned effective immediately from all of his remaining quizbowl commitments, precipitating the NHBBBlitz.

Matt Weiner has very strong opinions on many philosophical topics, including a distaste for the opinions of Edmund Gettier. Nevertheless, he should not be confused with this guy. He is also not the bassist for The Hot Club of Cowtown or the creator of Mad Men.


See also

Carper Award
Preceded by
Year
Succeeded by
Jeff Hoppes
2013
Susan Ferrari
Benjamin Cooper Academic Ambassador Award
Preceded by
Year
Succeeded by
R. Robert Hentzel
2011
Linda Greene & David Riley
Benjamin Cooper Young Ambassador Award
Preceded by
Year
Succeeded by
None
2004 (with David Bykowski)
Tom Egan
ACF Nationals Leading Scorer
Preceded by
Year
Succeeded by
Wesley Mathews
2005
Matt Lafer
ACF Nationals Leading Scorer
Preceded by
Year
Succeeded by
Matt Lafer
2007
Mike Sorice
ICT DI Leading Scorer
Preceded by
Year
Succeeded by
Andrew Yaphe
2002
Subash Maddipoti
ICT DI Leading Scorer
Preceded by
Year
Succeeded by
Jason Keller
2005, 2006, 2007
Jason Keller
ICT DII Leading Scorer
Preceded by
Year
Succeeded by
Steve Perry
2001
Matt Lafer