The Final Four President’s Cup saga continues
by Paul Truong

Above is the picture of GM Bykhovsky (middle) holding the President’s Cup at the 2012 Final Four Closing Ceremony in Herndon, Virginia.

This year, one week after Webster University won the College Chess Final Four, the team still has not received the President’s Cup. This is the first time in the Final Four history that the President’s Cup was not returned timely for the Opening and Closing Ceremony.

However, an official from Texas Tech stated the following: “…was told that the cup was not normally at the event and that it was sent to the winning team.” 

Really?

Right below is the picture of the 2011 Final Four Award Ceremony with the President’s Cup in Herndon, VA.

And here is the picture of the President’s Cup at the 2010 Final Four in Brownsville, TX:

Therefore, this raises the following questions:

1. Which Final Four was the President’s Cup not given to the champions at the Closing Ceremony?  

As far as I know, this was not the case, at least not since I have been involved in College Chess.

2. Who said that the President’s Cup was not normally at the Final Four?  

This is a shocking statement to me. It is also untrue, especially when 2 players who were on the 2012 championship team are still at Texas Tech. I can even show the picture of these 2 holding the President‘s Cup at the Closing Ceremony since I took all these pictures.

3. Why wasn’t the President’s Cup sent to the event organizer, which is Booz Allen Hamilton, weeks in advance to be sure? 

Before I left Texas Tech, I reminded multiple people involving in the chess program, including people at the highest level, to make sure that the President’s Cup is returned properly since it is the responsibility of the previous champion to deliver the cup at the Opening Ceremony. This is the same for Chess Olympiads.

So far, no cup, no apology, just finger pointing and excuses. Stay tuned, it is in the mail! 

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