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Quote of the Day - Good questions outrank easy answers. - Paul A. Samuelson

Go State! Win One For the Gipper! We're #1!

Law school rankings are the bane of every law school Dean. They're kind of like the legal version of a football coach's win-loss record.

Rumor has it that Deans have been fired (middle of the page) if their rankings drop.

So, how about this story of a New Jersey Judge banning other New Jersey judges from voting on law school rankings?

Brilliant idea. That's only going to hurt New Jersey law schools, says UT Law Professor Brian Leiter. In Leiter Reports he opines that "removing the New Jersey judges from the pool will simply penalize the New Jersey law schools, which are, presumably, rated more highly by New Jersey judges than judges in neighboring jurisdictions."

Those schools, Rutgers-Newark (78 in Assessment by Lawyers and Judges in 2004, 72 overall), Rutgers-Camden (89 & 72, respectively) and Seton Hall (89 & 89, respectively), as noted by the TaxProf Blog, may see a dip next year in their ratings. The TaxProf is Professor Paul Caron of the University of Cincinatti.

Many criticisms exist of the ranking system, presumably though not by many in the top tier but more so by those at the bottom. But they do mean something. Most lawyers, after asking your name and practice area, will ask where did you go to law school? Law firms and most companies still determine whether to hire lawyers based on what law school a prospective attorney attended.

Maybe it should be, "How many trials have you won?" or "How many of your contracts have been broken?"

Maybe it should just be, "Hi, nice to meet you."


Posted by J. Craig Williams on Wednesday, November 10, 2004

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