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MSU Earns First Round At-Large Bid for National Debate Tournament

Michigan State University Debate members Joanna Gusis and Tony Miklovis have earned an at-large bid in the first round of the National Debate Tournament, designating them as one of the top 16 teams in the country. Joanna Gusis and Tony Miklovis holding their award

Gusis, a political theory and constitutional democracy sophomore in the Honors College, and Miklovis, a social relations and policy and international relations junior in the Honors College, are now automatically qualified for the national tournament, bypassing the qualifying tournaments.

“Bids are decided by a panel of coaches from all around the country ranking teams based on their season-long success,” said Will Repko, MSU Debate Head Coach. “This is a testament to how amazing Tony and Joanna have done all year.”

In the regular season, Gusis and Miklovis reached the Sweet 16 at the Northwestern Season Opener, the University of Kentucky Tournament, the Harvard College Tournament, the Franklin R. Shirley Tournament and the Texas Open Tournament.

Other colleges that earned at-large bids include Harvard University, Georgetown University, Dartmouth College, the University of Michigan, Northwestern University, Emory University, Wake Forest University, California State University – Long Beach, the University of Kansas, the University of Kentucky, and the University of Texas at Austin.

Tony Miklovis and Joanna Gusis seated at a table smilingGusis and Miklovis are the 24th team in MSU Debate history to receive a first round at-large bid to the NDT and they are the first MSU team to achieve this honor since 2016.

“Ending the season in the top 16 has been a programmatic goal but it’s incredibly challenging. It’s a whole-team approach – including students and coaches – that has made this possible,” said Repko.

Additional members of MSU Debate will participate in the District 5 qualifying tournament later this month.

The National Debate Tournament will be held at Emory University from April 4-8, 2024.The MSU Debate Team is part of the Honors College.

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