Faculty Accolade - Brent Froberg, Senior Lecturer In Classics

August 24, 2004
Brent Froberg

Brent Froberg is a team player. Better yet, his team competes at the nationals.

The senior lecturer in classics has been involved in the academic College Bowl for 44 of the event's 50 years -- as a competitor in his undergraduate years at Indiana University and since as a coach or mentor at the universities where he has taught. 

In late April, he took Baylor's College Bowl team to Montgomery, Ala., to compete in its first national championship. The Bears placed 12th in a field of 16 teams, beating teams from Cornell University, Dartmouth College and the University of Chicago.

Froberg knows what it's like to be on the line with the buzzer at his fingertips, and he remembers well his first College Bowl experience as a freshman in 1960. "The first match we played was our last match," he says. "But I made up my mind I would try it again, and the next year we won the championship at IU." 

When he came to Baylor in 2001, he immediately asked if the University participated in College Bowl. "I was pleased when I found out they had an active team. I volunteered my services because we are all involved with the students, and I thought this was something I could bring much more to." 
He meets twice weekly throughout the academic year with the 10 to 12 team members, students who come from across the disciplines on campus. They prepare by going through mock competitions and using questions from previous College Bowls. 

The caliber of students pleases Froberg. "These are exceptionally talented students who have a broad variety of interests. My heart just skips a beat when I am surrounded by a bunch of college students who can do such remarkable things with their God-given talent and their quick minds."
The only requirement to be on the team is a thirst for knowledge, he says. Students need to read widely and carefully because the competition is "mental gymnastics."

Although a national championship so far has eluded Froberg, the excitement of College Bowl propels him. "It got under my skin years and years ago, and it's still there."