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School of Law Teams Take Two National Championships

Weekend law competitions in California and Albuquerque yield top honors for two moot court teams.

Written by Leslie Cranford

The law team of Julie Goen, Vanessa Burgess and Julie Caskey is just one of the two teams awarded a moot court national championship title in October. The team is pictured with coach Rob Sherwin.
The Texas Tech University School of Law brought home two national championship titles in two separate law competitions the weekend of Oct. 17-19. In Malibu, Calif., one Texas Tech team bested 23 other top teams from across the country to bring home the top prize at the National Entertainment Law Moot Court Competition. The team consists of third-year law students Vanessa Burgess of Washington, D.C.; Julie Goen of Seminole; and Julie Caskey, brief writer, from Katy. Caskey also was honored with the Best Respondent’s Brief Award. En route to its championship, the team defeated South Texas College of Law in the final round, UC Hastings School of Law in the semifinals, and Fordham University School of Law in the quarterfinals. The team is coached by Robert Sherwin, professor of law and director of Advocacy Programs at Texas Tech. Meanwhile, in Albuquerque, another trio of Texas Tech law students won the First Annual National Latino/a Law Student Association National Moot Court Competition. Comprising the team are second-year law students Ricardo Barrera, of Kingsville; Brian Foley, of Universal City; and Benton Ross, of Wichita Falls. The trio defeated Northern Illinois University School of Law in the final round, and Ross was named outstanding oralist of the competition. Barrera was elected chair of the Rocky Mountain Region of the organization. The NLLSA team is coached by Cal Lewis, associate dean, and co-coached by Arnold Loewy, professor of law.

The team of Ricardo Barrera, Brian Foley and Benton Ross took the national championship in the First Annual NLLSA National Moot Court Competition. The team is pictured with coach Cal Lewis.

Winning two national titles in one weekend is impressive, even to Walt Huffman, dean of Texas Tech’s School of Law. “This is a new record for our historically strong advocacy program – and it may be a record for law schools in general,” Huffman said. “It also marks a very strong start for our new director of Advocacy Programs, Rob Sherwin, who replaced the legendary retired ‘Coach’ Don Hunt earlier this year.” Hunt taught appellate advocacy at Texas Tech from 1974-2004, after which he limited his involvement to coaching the national appellate advocacy teams. He also was coach of the national trial teams for 30 years.
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School of Law
School of Law

The Texas Tech School of Law is a leader among Texas law schools with a 16-year average pass rate of 90 percent on the State Bar Exam.

A small student body, a diverse faculty, and a low student-faculty ratio (15.3:1) promotes learning and encourages interaction between students and professors.

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