By: Dwight Kidder
The National Academic Quiz Tournaments’ Individual Player National Championship Tournament was held this past Sunday, April 7, in Rosemont, Illinois. Max Rice, a student from Southern Boone High School, competed and placed 192nd in a 260-player field. Thirty-two states, the District of Columbia, and South Korea were represented in the sixth championship of its kind.

This quiz bowl event was extraordinary in that it was an individual competition, without the support of teammates. Quiz bowl is a competitive, academic, interscholastic activity for teams of students. Quiz bowl teams use buzzers and answer questions about science, math, history, literature, mythology, geography, social science, current events, sports, and popular culture.

Quiz bowl matches feature a blend of individual competition and team collaboration, since no individual player is likely to be an expert in all subject areas. Participation in quiz bowl both reinforces lessons from the classroom and encourages players to develop new intellectual interests.

The competition day began with seeding rounds to determine position for qualification. After five seeding rounds, the top players competed in an elimination round to determine the overall winner. In addition, players who performed well in specific academic categories were honored for their performance.

The Individual Player National Championship Tournament was first held in 2018, and the 2020 championships were not held to the COVID-19 outbreak. This year’s tournament was contested after Saturday’s Intercollegiate Championship Tournament, where top college teams from the US and Canada competed for the national title.