The University of Illinois College of Law has been ranked 5th in the nation in the Gavel Trial Advocacy Rankings, the only law school in the state of Illinois to make the top ten.
The Gavel Rankings are the only empirical/quantitative ranking assessment of trial team programs. Per the Gavel Rankings website, these rankings "identify the toughest competitions by polling 25 of the most respected trial team coaches and directors. Coaches were asked to score each competition from 1 to 10, reflecting how difficult it is for a team to be successful at that given competition. Coaches didn't rank competitions they hosted or those with which they were not familiar. Based on these rankings, each tournament was allocated a value. Teams are awarded points for winning a competition or being a finalist, semi-finalist, or (in some events) a quarterfinalist."
The announcement was made on the Unscripted Direct podcast, during Episode 73. The podcast is hosted by the trial advocacy directors at UCLA and Berkeley, and also includes a discussion of the Illinois Law trial team successes being one of the big stories of the year in the national trial advocacy community.
The Illinois trial team students have boasted impressive results at the following competitions:
Hofstra Medical-Legal Trial Competition – Champions; Nina Grover awarded best advocate
Case Classic Trial Competition, hosted by Case Western – Finalists; Joaquin Cabana awarded as best semifinalist round advocate
Summit Cup Trial Competition, hosted by University of Denver School of Law – Semi-Finalists
Chicago Cup Advocacy Competition – Third place finish
Professor Tony Ghiotto, director of the Anderson Center and the trial advocacy program at Illinois summed it up best:
"This recognition is a testament to the hard work, dedication, and talent of the students. I challenged them all this year, sending them to the toughest national competitions and expecting them to rise to the occasion. Whether it was during our summer boot camp sessions, our "back-to-school" scrimmages, the countless hours they spent practicing in our courtrooms, or at the competitions themselves, the students always represented the College of Law professionally and zealously. I am so honored to be directing this trial advocacy program."