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KU Law's moot court program ranks 14th in nation

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Moot Court Council 2018-2019

LAWRENCE – The University of Kansas School of Law’s moot court program is 14th in the nation, according to rankings published recently by the University of Houston Law Center.

This is the highest ranking KU Law’s moot court program has received since the ranking system began in 2009.

“Our record of rankings over the last 10 years shows that we have a very strong program,” said Pamela Keller, clinical professor of law and director of KU’s moot court program. “We have a lot of depth of student talent and committed faculty coaches. To be ranked this high shows that the student skills are getting better and better.”

Garnering the most points toward KU’s ranking was its performance at the National Native American Law Students Association (NNALSA) Moot Court Competition in March. Third-year law students Chris Carey, of Westwood Hills, and Maria Drouhard, of Green Bay, Wisconsin, won the competition. Carey also received the G. William Rice Best Oralist Award for earning the highest cumulative points in the competition.

From the rankings, the top 16 moot court programs are invited to compete in the 2020 Blakely National Moot Court Championship in Houston.

Second-year law students TJ Blake and Andi Leuszler will represent KU Law at the competition. Blake and Leuszler were the winners of KU Law’s Spring 2019 In-House Moot Court Competition last month.

“The invitation to the Blakely Championship really stems from a continuously strong commitment from KU Law faculty and staff to our success,” Blake said. “KU’s moot court program has a tradition of excellence, and Andi and I are proud to represent KU at its first appearance at the tournament.”

Other highlights from the 2018-2019 moot court season:

  • Vince Becraft, Bridget Brazil, Karen Fritts, Diana Jarek and Adam Merello finished in first place at the Jessup Rocky Mountain Regional Championship in Denver. The team also won an award for fourth-best memorial. Brazil won third prize for her oral advocacy skills. There were approximately 60 oralists at the competition. The team also participated in the competition's international rounds in Washington, D.C.
  • Carey and Drouhard won the Regional Rounds of the National Moot Court Competition in St. Louis, then placed in the Sweet 16 in the national finals in New York. At the regional competition, Carey won an award for best oral advocate.
  • Dan Kopp and Nancy Musick advanced to the semi-final round of the NNALSA Moot Court Competition, finished third overall in the competition and received an award for the second best brief.
  • Logan Fancher and Madeline Level advanced to the Sweet 16 round of the Robert F. Wagner National Labor and Employment Law Moot Court Competition in New York.

Most KU Law students who compete in national tournaments were the top finishers in the school’s in-house moot court competition during their second year of law school. Competitions generally consist of writing an appellate brief and presenting a mock oral argument before an appellate court.