Published on July 5, 2023 by Sofia Paglioni  
Two Female Law Students On The Trial Team

Samford University Cumberland School of Law has been ranked 3rd in the nation in the GAVEL Rankings, a trial advocacy ranking system created by Hofstra Law School, for the 2022-2023 academic year. Additionally, Cumberland School of Law ranks 2nd in the nation in overall since 2019.

The GAVEL Rankings were created with three goals in mind: to recognize excellent trial competition results, to give recognition to smaller programs and to acknowledge schools that win the toughest competitions.

The GAVEL Rankings identify these competitions by polling some of the most respected trial team coaches and directors, including Judge Jim Roberts, J.D. ’94, director of Cumberland’s National Trial Teams. Coaches were asked to score each competition from one to 10, reflecting how difficult it is for a team to be successful at that given competition. 

Assistant Professor of Law and Interim Director of Advocacy Matt Woodham commented on the hard work of Cumberland School of Law faculty and students.

He said, “Our ranking in this year’s Gavel Rankings is a reflection of both the quantity and quality of Cumberland’s successes in mock trial competitions in the 2022-2023 academic year. It is an incredible accomplishment that speaks volumes about the dedication, professionalism, and skill of our coaching staff and students.”

Cumberland School of Law is also ranked 4th in the nation by U.S. News & World Report for trial advocacy and 4th overall since 2016 by Fordham Law School’s Trial Competition Performance rankings.

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.