National Academic Championship
1013 Shore Acres Loop
Columbia, MO 65201


Playoffs are all Virtual:
June 10, JV & Elementary & Middle School/Junior High
June 11 Varsity

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Each team may choose one of these six preliminary-round phases:

  1. May 20, Virtual
  2. May 21, Virtual
  3. May 27-29, New Orleans
  4. June 2, Virtual
  5. June 3-4, Chicago
  6. June 5, Virtual

We offer three competitive levels at each phase: High School Varsity … High School JV … Middle School/Junior High …
Elementary School level will be offered only on May 21 (virtual), June 5 (virtual), and June 3-4 (Chicago)
Each virtual option will take place on one day, for everyone’s convenience, and will have a 28-team cap.

The venue (if you choose a virtual option) will be Google Meet which is free and easy-to-use.  During the prelims, your team will be connecting for two 90-minute blocs, 3 games per bloc on any of the preliminary dates.  Clarification: Both blocs must be on the same day.  Team members may join from school if schools are back in session or join from their own homes if that’s more convenient (the latter option actually makes for a more personalized experience, as we can easily address players by their names).

Six Guaranteed Matches

Each team will compete in at least six official tournament matches. Advancement to the playoff weekend (Single Elimination round) will be determined by performance in the six preliminary games. All 6-0, 5-1, and 4-2 teams will make the playoffs.

Bringing Multiple Teams.

Some schools choose to field two or more teams. If you’re considering this, be aware that players may not shift between teams. In addition, your teams may not compete during the same time bloc so they cannot face each other unless it happens in playoffs.

Consider Also Bringing Your Farm Team

Some years ago we predicted that the contending high school teams of the future will be those that have developed solid farm systems on the lower grade levels. The best example is Daviess County (KY), which won the JV title in 2015 and returned with the same players in 2016 and won the Varsity title.  Middle Schools are encouraged to consider bringing a team from the elementary school that feeds into your school – or bring a 6th grade team from your school to compete in the Elementary division.

Junior Varsity Tournament

At each venue we plan to run discrete JV tournaments. JV teams will be limited by the “Rule of 42.” That is, the total grade numbers of the four players at any given time shall not exceed 42. For example, 10 + 10 + 11 + 12 = 43, and that’s too much! 9 + 10 + 11 + 12 = 42, and that’s fine. Etc. etc. JV teams will be fielding the same questions as Varsity teams. Graduating seniors are allowed to participate on a JV team only if the school is also bringing a Varsity team as well as JV.

Small School Champion

We crown a high school champion from among the “small schools” that come to Nationals (defined as any school with 500 or fewer students in grades 10-12 and a nonselective admissions policy), selecting the highest-ranking such team.


Your team contingent should include three or four starters and one or more coaches. Alternate(s) are allowed but must remain on mute until they are in play.

How to Qualify