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ISU debate closes season with online championship

May 7, 2019 GMT

POCATELLO – The ISU Rupp Debate Squad closed out their 14-tournament season with another tournament-sweep win at the CLIMB Online championship tournament in April.

ISU speaker Jett Smith, debating as a maverick, occupying both positions on a two-person team, earned first-place honors in the year’s final contest. ISU debaters Nick Grunig and partner Jordan Reynolds took second place.

This is the second significant win for Smith, a freshman communication major from Pocatello, who claimed third place at the International Public Debate Association National tournament earlier in April. Smith argued that there is validity in implementing the “Warren Plan” to alleviate student loan debt.


Grunig, a Pocatello junior majoring in philosophy, and Reynolds, a freshman English major from Blackfoot, argued against “[increasingly] strict regulations for large farming operations.”

The fifth-seed team of Conner Coutts and Rianne Quigley narrowly missed the semi-final round. Quigley, a freshman English major from Idaho Falls, was fifth speaker in the tournament. Coutts, a Pocatello sophomore studying secondary education, was fourth speaker overall. Smith claimed top speaker marks at the tournament in addition to his win.

Rupp Debate Team president Nick Grunig said, “What a great way to end the year. It’s been so great to see everybody improve and grow. Next year is going to be even better.”

ISU’s debate squad functions with support from the James M. and Sharon E. Rupp Debate Society, the ISU College of Arts and Letters, the Department of Communication, Media and Persuasion and the Associated Students of the ASISU.