UNA Mock Trial Team Places Third Out of 64 Teams at Recent Tournament

Nov. 18, 2010


FLORENCE, Ala. – The UNA Mock Trial Team recently placed third at the 21st annual Mid-South Invitational Tournament at Middle Tennessee State University from Nov. 12-13 in Murfreesboro, Tenn.

Sixty-four teams from universities across the country divided into two divisions at the four-round tournament. The UNA Mock Trial Team, which was separated into two small groups of 6-7 students, won rounds against Southern Methodist University, Mississippi Valley State University and MTSU until they lost against the University of South Carolina, which went on to win the entire tournament.

The Mock Trial Team argued a fictional product liability case called Davis vs. Happyland Toy Company, in which a 2-year-old boy named Joey Davis ingested a princess bead from a toy set that bonded together when wet. The team argued whether or not the elevated chemical GHP was lethal enough to kill the child. The 140-page case provided 44 pieces of evidence that students could use to help prove their argument at the competition.

UNA student and president of the team Cody Wix argued both sides of the case at the MTSU tournament. A journalism major who hopes to go to law school after completing his undergraduate degree, Wix views mock trials as preparation for his future career as an attorney.

“Getting involved helps because you learn a lot of skills in mock trials that you don’t learn in law school,” he said. “By the time students have lived and breathed mock trials so long, it’s nothing to them by the time they get to law school. It helps with a person’s confidence level and public speaking ability and shows them how to think like a lawyer.”

The Mock Trial Team currently consists of 14 members who practice bi-weekly and study their case extensively to prepare themselves for the regional tournament next Februrary, which will determine whether they go on to compete in the national competition next year.

Next year, the team will travel to Ohio Northern University from Jan. 15-16 for the fifth annual Polar Bear Invitational and again to the National Invitational at Loras College in Dubuque, Iowa, from Jan. 28-29.

For more information, contact Dr. Tim Collins, faculty adviser for the UNA Mock Trial Team, at 256-765-4525 or jtcollins@una.edu.