MANHATTAN, KAN. — A team of students from the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences department of animal science at Texas A&M University recently won the national championship in the American Meat Science Association Intercollegiate Quiz Bowl.

The competition was held June 19 during the association’s 2011 Reciprocal Meat Conference held at Kansas State University in Manhattan, Kan.

Two teams from Texas A&M competed against 29 teams from 18 universities. The A&M maroon team of Jae Ebeling from Plainview, Jessica Steger from Del Valle and Lance Wheeler from Dallas were undefeated through the competition, defeating North Dakota State University in the final round.

A second A&M team of Trey Brooks from Llano, Rachel Glascock from Pilot Point and Lauren Thompson of Grandview finished in the top eight. Kaitlin Shaw from San Antonio served as alternate.

“These seven students have been studying all facets of the meat and livestock industries, and the meat and animal sciences for the past six months,” said Dr. Dan Hale, Texas AgriLife Extension Service meat specialist and team coordinator. “I consider them all national champions. The contest preparation and participation have prepared these students to be the next key leaders in the food, meat or animal industries.”

The quiz bowl is designed to encourage interaction among students from different universities, increase student interest in the area of meat science and provide a field for friendly competition within academia.

The teams are divided into a double elimination bracket. Each round consists of 40 questions on meat safety, quality and chemistry; muscle biology; animal physiology; meat production, industry history and current events; and human nutrition and health.

The team is coached by graduate students Carson Ulbrich of Jourdanton, Kayla Nelson from Houston and Adria Grayson from Childress. In preparation for the contest, the team members trained with the coaches and meat science faculty in the animal science department.