William and Mary
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|Current President or Coach||Chris Miller (?)|
Founded by Matt Morrison in October of 2006, William & Mary Quizbowl could have theoretically been founded a year earlier by W&M Law student and former Duke Quizbowl President Darren Abernethy but he instead chose to play CBI.
In November 2006, at the first tournament the team attended (some Southern Virginia U. excuse for college quizbowl run on NAQT questions and designed for CBI-only teams), there were notably several Latter Day Saints regulations at the host venue, including a caffeine ban (which was blamed for one of W&M's two losses) and a strict dress code requiring men to shave their beards and not have long hair. Fortunately W&M's team was not kicked out despite consisting of two Jews (one of whom had a thick beard), a Russian, atheist drunkard with long hair, a Catholic gay guy, and the only "acceptable" person in that setting, Matt Morrison. The team earned its best finish to date, 2nd place to SVU's house A team. This was probably due to the weak field, though they did beat Virginia Tech A thoroughly.
Thankfully, the 2007-2008 team appeared to be less of a motley crew and to have better hygiene than the previous year's team. Matt Morrison recruited so many people that it caused an integer overflow, so only a few notable freshmen remained: Mark Guerci (former Maggie Walker captain), offensive tackle Jon Ogden (formerly of GDS), current President Dan Leifer (formerly of GDS), Ellen Speers, Matt Peppe, Matt Tobin (formerly of Bergen County Academies), and Claire Meers. Additionally, George Berry tagged along for some fall tournaments due to his previous inability to form a team at his community college.
With the loss of Matt Morrison to J. Sargeant Reynolds for the fall semester, the entire team amounted to nothing more than a handful of freshmen and sophmores. Actually returning this year were Dan Leifer, Jon Ogden, and Ellen Speers, joined by fellow classmate Alex Kashurba. After a larger than expected turnout from the activities fair recruitment, freshmen attendance eventually dwindled to the usual lackluster numbers. Staying on for the ride were newcomer Annie Adams, Lisa Iverson, Chris "The Asian Guy" Dao (who played on Maggie Walker D for a year), and Bali Gupta (formerly of Thomas Jefferson B). The team attended the Mid-Atlantic ACF Fall at VCU, where the A-team finished 3-8 and the B-team finished with a disappointing 0-11 after seeing many close matches. The team earned its first tournament win at the Reynolds Invitational Open Tournament (RIOT), hosted by J. Sargeant Reynolds. The A-team finished 11-1, beating out UMBC in a thrilling final match, while the B-team, which saw Dan Leifer pick up the neg prize with 42 negs, managed to actually win a game and finished 1-10.
Under the leadership of Sean Smiley and James Cole, William and Mary Quizbowl began a rebirth. They started writing and running James Blair Bowl for High Schoolers. Additionally, with an influx of quizbowlers from Virginia and DC-area schools, the club was able to get 8th place at DII ICT, as well as field a competitive B team at SCT.
William & Mary Quizbowl has nothing to do with VHSL States, which has been hosted at the College long before the club was founded. Confusion may arise from the fact that in 2007 three club members were volunteers at States and Matt Morrison was hired as Group A coordinator, notably showing up last-minute wearing jeans and a golf shirt.
Also, the club was not involved at all with William & Mary's CBI program. Nick Hoelker was the only W&M player who played in both CBI and invitational tournaments.