Scholars’ bowl expands roster, boosts success

Caroline Barger

More stories from Caroline Barger


Scholars’ Bowl has seen a notable increase in the number of team members and with that, has risen to success. This group, largely comprised of seniors, is making a name for themselves, beginning with a first place finish at the Salina Central varsity meet on Sept. 2.

According to head coach Brian Skinner, transitioning from only 12 to over 30 students having an interest in Scholars’ Bowl has benefited the team greatly. However, accommodating for all of the competitors has been a challenge.

“The hardest part about having so many people is getting people to the meets that they want,” Skinner said. “Everyone wants to go to seven meets, which is the maximum number that you can go to, However, you can only take six people to a meet.”

Skinner has applied his passion for academic competition into coaching and has found a great connection with the students on his team.

“I loved Scholars’ Bowl when I was in school. I was not going to be great in athletic teams and Scholars’ Bowl is just for a different group of students. It’s the only group of students where I can read super nerdy questions and have them not give me that look of ‘are you kidding me,’” Skinner said.

Skinner said having a team with so much experience has been a factor when considering success in meets.

“I think this year’s team is significantly more experienced than last year’s team. Last year, I mentioned that we had several juniors that had just started to join and they had never done Scholars’ Bowl before,” Skinner said. “There is a huge difference in one full year of experience and zero years of experience. We are returning everyone from our varsity regional team last year and having that experience going forward is really big.”

Skinner believes that with incoming participants, the team will be able to continue their success through next year.

“My understanding is that middle school is really building their program, so that will feed into us. I think it just really piggybacks to those who are moving up. They are stronger each year they come through and that is gonna keep the strength going,” Skinner said.

As the number of members increase so does the level of competition within the team.

“I think the increase in knowledge helps. Just because it creates more competition or variety of knowledge throughout the team,” senior Erik Brown said.

Both Skinner and the team members have a common goal when looking at postseason.

“Our main goal is making it to state and hopefully once we get that far, doing well at state,” Brown said.