Updated: Original New Skool Category Breakdown

Whoever wins the Original New Skool Category this year will be a first timer.  Of this crop of contestants, only Kirk White has placed in the Original New Skool category.  Based on the statistics, Royce Banks would have to be a favorite to win this year’s contest.  Having placed 5 times in the Original Old Skool Category, dating as far back as 1996, he is the strongest contestant in the pool.  Conversely, he has NEVER one 1st place in the World’s Largest Steppers Contest.  It should be noted however, that Royce has placed in the money (2nd or 3rd) for the last 3 years straight.  To that end, Kirk White is the only contestant in this group to have placed first in an Original World’s Largest Category, and with 3 total wins you have to count him as a strong contender as well.  Lastly, Darrin Ulmer has two Orignal Category wins, both of which took place before the New Skool/Old Skool system was put in place.  He will return to action this year for the first time since 2009.  With Darrin’s high energy style, the crowd will surely be looking out for him.

One interesting point to note is that only 1 female in the Original New Skool category this year, based on our observations, has placed in the World’s Largest Steppers Contest before, and that’s Amanda Anderson in the Beginners.  This means this will be the first time any female competing will have placed in an Original Category.

What this summery sums up for the contestants is that there is a lot of opportunity on the table for one of these couples to step up and claim a first place victory.  What these stats suggest to me is that the category is wide open this year.  There are 24 couples competing this year, so without factoring in talent, each contestant has a 4% chance of winning this year’s contest.  Take a look at the final Original New Skool contestant lineup and win stats below …

Tony & Lynda
Elmo Taylor & Anita Rylander
David Watkins & Latasha Watkins
Torrey Loggins & Tamika Hill
Rich Jackson & Cheri Lilly
Elliot Johnson & Pearline Wilson
Earl Carlson & Sonya Whirl
Mark Alexander & Tabitha Hicks
Jerry Harris & Theresa Gamble
Royce Banks & Christa Lee
Cory Carrigan & Rashida Moore
Alfred Johnson & Marsha Ashley
Darrin Ulmer & Susie Ivy
Rob Bennet & Lacole Clindon
Ed Donaldson & Amanda Anderson
Karon Louris & Onekka Louris
Frank Cole & Alex Ann Cole
Lance Griffin & Bonnie Ford
Kabaar Powell & Lucille Baugh
Marcus Reynolds & Opal Jones
Kirk White & Bridgett Carter
Ted Williams & Patricia Ford
Carlton Puckett & Lauren LaGrone

Only 4 contestants in this category have placed in an Original Category

Kirk White: 1st Old Skool 2011; 3rd New Skool 2007 3rd
Royce Banks
: 2nd Old Skool 2014; 3rd Old Skool 2013; 2nd Old Skool 2012; 3rd 40 & Over 2008; 3rd Original Category 1996
Maurice Thomas: 3rd New Skool Original 2014
Darrin Ulmer: 2nd 40 and Over 2008; 2nd 39 & Under 2004

Contestants who placed in Non-Original Categories:
Maurice Thomas – 2 OOT Category 1st place wins;
Mark Alexander: 1 Beginners 1st place;
Darrin Ulmer – Trio Category 1st place;
Ed Donaldson – Trio Category 1st place; Beginners 1st pl
Kirk White – Trio Category 1st place
Amanda Anderson – Beginner’s 1st place