stillwater wrote:I.P. Daly wrote:It's my understanding that the schools that frequently make it to the finals in the Federal Bar Association Moot Court Competition are pretty good.
http://www.fedbar.org/Divisions/Younger ... Court.aspx
these schools are TTT and TTTTs.
Please. There are quite a few that aren't (and Georgetown & UVA are obviously T14). That said, the comment about T14 schools generally being more concerned with intramural moot court competitions is largely true. (THAT said, Georgetown is probably the best all-around T14 school for both interscholastic moot court and mock trial.)
OP, a good guidepost to schools with solid interscholastic moot court and mock trial teams can be found in the U.S. News rankings for schools with the best trial advocacy programs:
http://grad-schools.usnews.rankingsandr ... y-rankings
Most of these schools also happen to host many of the most well-regarded moot court and/or mock trial competitions in the country. Now yes: a lot of these schools are, to put it mildly, subpar. I'd honestly never even *heard* of TTT-ranked Stetson U., the top-ranked law school on the USN list, until I started looking into joining my school's own mock/moot teams. In essence, the TTT schools on the USN and FBA lists put all their eggs into a handful of baskets in order to attract both students and at least some level of national recognition. Baylor Law, for instance, is famous in Texas for ALWAYS having the highest bar-passage rate in the state, even though perennial T14-runner-up UT is the better of the two schools on nearly every level.
For non-BigLaw legal employers in Texas at least, a prospective hire with a Baylor or even South Texas degree will most definitely be considered a strong contender from the get-go if they've placed highly at any of the major competitions in each area. (Disclaimer: I do not attend either school, nor do I have any connections at them.) I also know from firsthand experience that judges who don't limit their clerk hires to HYS/T14/top X% kids most definitely like to see success in either arena. (Btw by this I mean federal district court and lower judges, not COA or state supreme court level.) And yes, it is indeed possible -- albeit substantially more difficult -- to land a BigLaw SA gig, and even post-grad employment, with slightly below-average grades if you have significant moot court experience in particular (although as everyone's already noted, LR remains the single most important credential besides grades and school caliber).
All that said, I concur with others that you should absolutely NOT pick a school on the basis of its moot court program alone. If your decision comes down to two schools that are otherwise closely matched but one has a national reputation in trial ad/moot court/mock trial, then by all means go with the latter. And while I don't know if this is the case everywhere, my T1 school has both interscholastic and intramural moot court competitions; all of our 1Ls are *required* to participate in a noncompetition moot court event as part of their second-semester LRW curriculum. Their brief in particular is one of the larger components of their second-semester grades (25%, IIRC).