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April 3, 2017
Morse named best advocate as Campbell Law places second at South Texas Challenge

RALEIGH, N.C. - Third-year Campbell Law student Jacob Morse was named best advocate for the second time in as many years as Campbell Law placed second overall at the 2017 South Texas Mock Trial Challenge, March 30-April 2, in Houston, Texas. Morse and fellow third-year students Casey Peaden and Gray Smith put Campbell Law in the championship round for the third time in three years, and the fourth time in five years.

Both Morse and Peaden have ushered Campbell Law to the championship round in each of the last two years.

A three time event champion, Campbell Law took the title back to Raleigh in 2013, 2015 and 2016.

“Once again our student advocates demonstrated that they rank among the very best of the best,” said Campbell Law Director of the Advocacy Program & Assistant Professor of Law Dan Tilly. “The South Texas Challenge is the largest spring invitational trial competition in the nation. Jacob, Gray and Casey brought home two outstanding advocacy awards in the preliminary rounds, the championship best advocate award and the national runner-up title. They represent everything that Campbell Law instills in students – hard work, perseverance and courtroom persuasion.”  

This year’s competition involved a damages case in which liability had already been directed by the court. In the only competition of its kind in the country, student trial advocates were required to focus their case on the damages associated with medical researchers who extracted stem cells from a minor child without consent for use in their own research which resulted in a lucrative drug patent. Campbell Law tried the case on both sides throughout seven trials in four days. The team defeated law school competitors from Faulkner, the University of Pennsylvania, Michigan State, Stetson, St. Mary’s and Georgia State before losing on split ballots to the University of Georgia.  

Hosted by South Texas College of Law in Houston, Texas, the South Texas Mock Trial Challenge is one of the preeminent mock trial competitions in the country. As the largest invitational trial competition in America, the South Texas Mock Trial Challenge hosts teams from across the nation. Most competing schools opt to send their very best advocates, many of whom competed at other national competitions this spring.  

Campbell Law is a top 25 ranked advocacy school by U.S. News & World Report.  

Since its founding in 1976, Campbell Law School has developed lawyers who possess moral conviction, social compassion and professional competence, and who view the law as a calling to serve others. The school has twice received the Gambrell Professionalism Award from the American Bar Association, honoring its First-Year Professionalism Development Series in 2003 and the Connections mentorship program in 2016. The school has also been recognized by the American Academy of Trial Lawyers for having the nation’s best Trial Advocacy Program. Campbell Law boasts more than 3,900 alumni, including more than 3,000 who reside and work in North Carolina. In September 2009, Campbell Law relocated to a state-of-the-art building in downtown Raleigh. For more information, visit




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