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Bradley University Speech Team Wins 2013 American Forensic Association Championship

The Bradley Speech Team was once again crowned national champions at the American Forensic Association tournament in Hutchison, Kan., placing first as a team and sealing the top five individual categories.

The victory cements the forensics team’s longstanding legacy of winning national titles and its reputation as one of the most respected programs in the country. This is the 40th national speech championship earned by Bradley students and their 22nd AFA national title since 1980.

“It was a historic victory,” said Ken Young, director of forensics, who is serving his first year head coach. “Bradley’s tradition of excellence is alive and well.”

Bradley scored an impressive 659 points for the win, placing its students well above the second-place winner Western Kentucky University, with 488 points, and third-place George Mason University, with 335 points.

In addition to the team’s success, students captured the top five individual sweepstakes awards, given to individuals who garner the most points after competing in at least four events. Senior philosophy major Jacoby Cochran was named national champion at the tournament out of a field of nearly 80 other universities.

Along with Cochran, six other Bradley students ranked in the individual sweepstakes. They are: Cecil Blutcher, senior, second place, who also was individual champion in duo interpretation with his partner Kaybee Brown; Brown, junior, third place, who also was individual champion in dramatic interpretation, prose interpretation and duo interpretation with Blutcher; Junior Ocasio, senior, fourth place, who also was individual champion in persuasive speaking and Ryan Tinlin, senior, fifth place.

Also ranking in the individual sweepstakes were Brooke Stevenson, senior, 10th place and Talan Tyminski, sophomore, 19th place.

Ocasio, student president of the forensics team, attributed the team’s success to its tireless work ethic and help from alumni. “It took a lot of practice and hard work but it’s something that we love to do and we’re incredibly proud of our success,” he said. “It just goes to show with the support of our alumni and Bradley what we can achieve.”

As a theatre arts major, Brown said his work on the team has helped perfect his acting and delivery on stage. His speech presentations both influence and reflect what he is studying academically.

“I’ve learned a great deal from both my theater classes and my practice on the team,” he said.

The Speech Team will compete next week in the National Forensic Association Championship Tournament at Marshall University in Huntington, W.Va. where they will again defend their title as national champions.

Impromptu Speaking

National Quarterfinalists (top 24)

  • Ben Gaddis - senior, St. Charles, IL (Public Relations/Political Science)
  • Natalie Tomes - junior, Wheaton, IL (History/Political Science)

National Finalist (top 6) 

  • 2nd place - Jacoby Cochran - senior, Chicago, IL (Philosophy)

Informative Speaking 

National Quarterfinalists

  • Aaron Fullman - senior, Anaheim, CA (Organizational Communication)
  • Junior Ocasio - senior, Cleveland, OH (Public Relations)
  • Brooke Stevenson - senior. Fremont, CA (Psychology)
  • Talan Tyminski - sophomore, Ballwin, MO (Political Science/Economics)

National Finalists 

  • 3rd place - Jacoby Cochran - senior, Chicago, IL (Philosophy)
  • 4th place - Cecil Blutcher - senior, Chicago, IL (Political Science)
  • 6th place - Ryan Tinlin - senior, Dellroy, OH (Psychology) 

Prose Interpretation

National Quarterfinalists 

  • Cecil Blutcher - senior, Chicago, IL (Political Science)
  • Savannah Jones - sophomore, St. Joseph, MO (Journalism)
  • Brooke Stevenson - senior, Fremont, CA (Psychology)

National Semifinalist (top 12) 

  • Morgan Green - junior, Decatur, IL (Theatre Arts)

National Finalist

  • National Champion - Kaybee Brown - junior, Chicago, IL (Theatre Arts) 

Extemporaneous Speaking

National Quarterfinalists 

  • Jacoby Cochran - senior, Chicago, IL (Philosophy)
  • Talan Tyminski - sophomore, Ballwin, MO (Political Science/Economics)

National Semifinalist

  • Ben Gaddis - senior, St. Charles, IL (Public Relations/Political Science) 

Persuasive Speaking

National Semifinalists

  • AJ Curry - junior, Palatine, IL (Sports Communication)
  • Talan Tyminski - sophomore, Ballwin, MO (Political Science/Economics)

National Finalists

  • National Champion - Junior Ocasio - senior, Cleveland, OH (Public Relations)
  • 2nd place - Jacoby Cochran - senior, Chicago, IL (Philosophy)
  • 3rd  place - Brooke Stevenson - senior. Fremont, CA (Psychology)

Program of Oral Interpretation

National Semifinalists 

  • Gabby Dillon - junior, South Holland, IL (Journalism)
  • Aaron Fullman - senior, Anaheim, CA (Organizational Communication)

National Finalist 

  • 3rd place - Cecil Blutcher - senior, Chicago, IL (Political Science)

Duo Interpretation

National Quarterfinalists

  • Morgan Green - junior, Decatur, IL (Theatre Arts)/Dawnevan McClure - senior, Chicago, IL (Television Arts)

National Finalists 

  • National Champions - Cecil Blutcher - senior, Chicago, IL (Political Science) / Kaybee Brown - junior, Chicago, IL (Theatre Arts)
  • 4th place - Gabby Dillon - junior, South Holland, IL (Journalism) / Junior Ocasio - senior, Cleveland, OH (Pub. Relations)
  • 6th place - Justin Restaino - senior, Fullerton, CA (Television Arts / Ryan Tinlin - senior, Dellroy, OH (Psychology)

After-Dinner Speaking

National Semifinalists 

  • Lauren Galloway – freshman, Morris, IL (English)
  • Brooke Stevenson - senior. Fremont, CA (Psychology)

National Finalists 

  • 2nd place - Ryan Tinlin - senior, Dellroy, OH (Psychology)
  • 3rd place - Ben Gaddis - senior, St. Charles, IL (Public Relations/Political Science)
  • 5th place - Jacoby Cochran - senior, Chicago, IL (Philosophy)

Communication Analysis

National Quarterfinalists 

  • Julia Rabin - freshman, Naperville, IL (Social Work/Organizational Communication)
  • Talan Tyminski - sophomore, Ballwin MO (Political Science/Economics)
  • Kailee Watkins - junior, Winfield, IL (Political Science)

National Semifinalists 

  • AJ Curry - junior, Palatine, IL (Sports Communication)
  • Ryan Tinlin - senior, Dellroy, OH (Psychology)

National Finalists

  • 2nd place - Junior Ocasio - senior, Cleveland, OH (Public Relations)
  • 3rd place - Jacoby Cochran - senior, Chicago, IL (Philosophy)

Poetry Interpretation

National Quarterfinalists

  • Gabby Dillon - junior, South Holland, IL (Journalism)
  • Morgan Green - junior, Decatur, IL (Theatre Arts)

National Semifinalist

  • Junior Ocasio - senior, Cleveland, OH (Public Relations)

National Finalists

  • 3rd place - Cecil Blutcher - senior, Chicago, IL (Political Science)
  • 5th place - Kaybee Brown - junior, Chicago, IL (Theatre Arts)

Dramatic Interpretation

National Quarterfinalist

  • Cecil Blutcher - senior, Chicago, IL (Political Science)

National Semifinalist

  • Morgan Green - junior, Decatur, IL (Theatre Arts)

National Finalist

  • National Champion - Kaybee Brown - junior, Chicago, IL (Theatre Arts)

Individual Sweepstakes (most points scored by students in at least 4 events)

  • 19th place - Talan Tyminski - sophomore, Ballwin, MO (Political Science/Economics)
  • 10th place - Brooke Stevenson - senior. Fremont, CA (Psychology)
  • 5th place - Ryan Tinlin - senior, Dellroy, OH (Psychology)
  • 4th place - Junior Ocasio - senior, Cleveland, OH (Public Relations)
  • 3rd place - Kaybee Brown - junior, Chicago, IL (Theatre Arts)
  • 2nd place - Cecil Blutcher - senior, Chicago, IL (Political Science)
  • National Champion - Jacoby Cochran - senior, Chicago, IL (Philosophy) 

Team Sweepstakes

  • 20th – University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire - 68 pts
  • 19th - Florida State University - 73.5
  • 18th - Hastings College - 75.5
  • 17th - Kansas State University - 82.5
  • 16th - Rice University - 84.5
  • 15th – Concordia College (MN) - 97
  • 14th - Texas State University - 99
  • 13th - North Central College - 100
  • 12th - Doane College - 118.5
  • 11th - Eastern Michigan University - 119
  • 10th – University of Northern Iowa - 181
  • 9th - Illinois State University - 183.5
  • 8th - Gustavus Adolphus College - 209
  • 7th – University of Nebraska-Lincoln - 235
  • 6th – University of Nebraska-Omaha - 258.5
  • 5th – University of Alabama-Tuscaloosa - 259.5
  • 4th – University of Texas at Austin - 273
  • 3rd - George Mason University - 335
  • 2nd - Western Kentucky University - 488
  • CHAMPIONS - BRADLEY UNIVERSITY - 659