Briefing Room


Students win Sutherland Cup, compete across country

April 4, 2013 | Students

Students from The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law continue to compete in competitions at home and afar. Last month, they brought honor to the College – and a national championship in the case of one team.

  • The Constitutional Law Team, composed of 3Ls Ariel Brough and Whitney Siehl and 2L Jim Saywell, was crowned national champion at the Sutherland Cup Moot Court Competition, held at Catholic University in Washington, D.C. March 15-16.The team, coached by Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs Monte Smith, eliminated teams from the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law, Campbell University, and both Georgetown Law Center teams on their march to victory.

    The Sutherland Cup Competition is the oldest national moot court competition in the U.S. It is an appellate advocacy competition focusing on constitutional law. Teams must submit a brief and deliver oral arguments before a panel of practicing attorneys.

    This year’s problem involved a church-sponsored university’s firing of a professor of theology, who was also the head of a union bargaining unit. The professor claimed he was fired because of his union activities, while the university claimed he was fired because his teachings deviated from the doctrine of the church. The case questioned whether the National Labor Relations Act allows the NLRB to intervene in personnel matters that the university claims are central to its religious mission.

  • 2Ls Brodi Conover and Jim Saywell were awarded “Best Brief” and “Best Overall,” respectively, in the 21st Annual Herman Moot Court Competition at the Moritz College of Law.Every year 2L competitors in the Herman brief and argue a case that is currently before the United States Supreme Court. This year, students focused arguments in Maryland v. King, a case which considers whether warrantless collection of an arrestee’s DNA constitutes a Fourth Amendment search.

    This year’s competition concluded Feb. 28, and “Best Oralist” previously was awarded to 2L Colvin Kalvas.

  • The Labor and Employment Law Moot Court Team, consisting of 3Ls Holly Coats and Justin Joyce and 2L Matt Strayer, competed in the 37th Annual Robert F. Wagner Labor and Employment Law Moot Court Competition, held March 21-24 at New York Law School.The team emerged as one of the top eight teams from a field of 46 based on the three preliminary rounds. The team advanced to the Octo-Final Rounds. Unfortunately, in spite of an impressive performance, they were eliminated in that round.

    Strayer received the award for second-best oralist in the preliminary rounds.