Wednesday, January 08, 2014

College Chess has gotten much stronger in recent years

SANDS: Now an underdog, UMBC snares a place in collegiate chess Final Four
By David R. Sands
The Washington Times
Tuesday, January 7, 2014

It’s a measure of how good the college game has become that the University of Maryland-Baltimore County’s second-place finish in last month’s Pan-American Intercollegiate Team Championship, hosted by Texas Tech in Lubbock, ranked as at least a mild upset.

Once a dominant force on the collegiate chess scene, the Retrievers needed a last-round upset of archrival — and higher-seeded — University of Texas-Dallas to secure second place. Winning the event was the now-dominant “A” squad from Webster University in St. Louis, which went undefeated with a lineup anchored by three 2700-plus grandmasters, Le Quang Liem, Wesley So and Georg Meier. Webster, which has made no secret of its ambition to do and spend what it takes to develop a dominant chess program, entered three teams at Lubbock. Even its lowest-rated team had an average rating of 2385.

Webster, UMBC, Texas Tech and surprise qualifier University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana earned places in the collegiate chess Final Four in April.

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Note: Webster University does NOT have the biggest chess budget. In fact, the SPICE team won the first Final Four 3 years ago as the team with the smallest budget among the Final Four qualifiers. It is about the quality of the students and coaching technique.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

UMBC give out more money than most schools.