NO, NOT BETTER OFF
The hour is now, the time is here, the enthralling and thrilling atmosphere is about to be launched in the University community. You can either be an actor or a spectator; if you are on the stage, then you are an actor but if you are seated in the pews, then you are a spectator. The fun electrifying! Over the years, Super Bowl has always been an avenue for students of the University who have flare for speech making to showcase their oratory prowess. Super Bowl UI is tantamount to UI Cup of wits and words.
It is good to know that the fifth edition of Super Bowl will commence in a matter of days. The major bone of contention for this week’s edition of Courtroom is the new mode of participation in Super Bowl. The new mode states that the preliminaries will be conducted in halls of residence; a winner from each of these halls will proceed to the finals where they will slug it out with themselves to get the ultimate winner. No preference for former finalists in this edition! The previous edition was not like this as it gave all students in the University community the opportunity to participate fully. Students individually got their forms, came to the podium to talk about their topics, there were three rounds before the finals and students from other schools were also privileged to mount the stage. Many have lamented about this new style of participation. Personally, I do not support this method; it is a good innovation but not the best, not in any way better than the previous mode. If there have been rumours about partiality in judgement in the past, then this is the factory where it will be manufactured into goods and services.
It gets appalling when you get to see Super Bowl as a competition where you have to secure the interest of your hall. For God’s sake, this is an individual preparing day and night; sheaving through the pages of history to dine with oratory professionals. When you qualify from your hall, either you like it or not, they are all crazy about you, mount immense pressure on you and hence you have a divided and intoxicated audience. I don’t need to tell you how the gallery or the pews will look like, it will be like manifesto where people scream and shout out their guts like sycophants, hence their judgement of the competitors is being severely affected by hall affinities and all the likes. This is not healthy for Super Bowl; it has the tendency to cause unending dispute and rancour among halls of residence.
This new mode may strip Super Bowl of its necessary exhilarating fun; it could become cold till the final day and look like just a Literary and Debating competition. Suspense is intense as UI waits for her new King or Queen of words and wits; someone who is set to join the league of intellectual mad men. Yes! Mad but in an intellectual way, sensitive to the audience, reads them and knows what they want. Play to the gallery, wow the audience, get them out of their seats and make their hands give you an extraordinary ovation. Super Bowl 5 is here but I doubt if the package is full because this mode is not the best!
As it is said of the latter house, that “the glory of the latter house would be greater than that of the former”, so is it also said of Superbowl. It gets more glorious by every passing year. I was not privileged to see Superbowl 1, but I heard it was great, whereas Superbowl 2 was greater. When we thought Superbowl 3 was the greatest, Superbowl 4 came to show that the greatest would probably never come as Superbowl was growing from strength to strength.
But here we are at the threshold of time, at the brooks of history, at the verge of Superbowl 5, will Superbowl 5 dwarf 4? Can we behold wits greater than that of the Ciceros of UI? Can we boast of a better poet than Bunmi Oke or an action man like Deyoyin Paul? Can the likes of Kemi emerge from the female halls? Have we seen the best of University of Ibadan public speakers? Will this year be any different?
Only time has the answers!
It no news that Superbowl would be taking a new path this session, a path were the best from each hall would proceed to the finals to face the big guns, standing on the Hall’s giant shoulders. Many have said this method would not make the battle as fierce as it used to be, but am of a different opinion. If we recall, in Superbowl 4, Tedder Hall had 4 candidates in the Final stage; Tosin, Mc Rain, Paul and Ayeni Promise. Superbowl almost became a Hall affair and most of the audience was draped from Tedder Hall.
With the new mode, this would not be the case; the Preliminaries would be so interesting and the finals would be representative and interesting. Imagine a Preliminary that would see to picking the best out of the four finalists from Tedder Hall last year.
Another major advantage of the new mode of things around the Superbowl arena is the fact that the finals would see to the careful selections of every hall’s best. The preparation for the finals would therefore no longer be a personal affair, as the hall’s Literary and Debating Team would be actively involved in the drilling of the hall’s sole candidate thereby bringing out the best in their candidate.
This arrangement would see to it that many halls of residence including Alexander Brown Hall would turn out en masse to support their representative at the final stage and will therefore see to the a more interesting Superbowl experience.
My Lord, I hereby posit that the new Superbowl is way better than the former.
CONCLUSION: This column is about you, it presents the two sides of a case courtesy of two writers from different schools of thought. “Audi alteram partem” means hear the other side before passing your judgement. Take the gavel, make your decision and slam because you are the judge in this courtroom. Is the new Super bowl method better off?
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