GREENFIELD – Students and parents sat in silence in the gym bleachers at Greenfield-Central High School as the annual Academic Super Bowl got underway at 5:30 p.m. April 16.

A hush fell over the crowd in the dimly lit gym as the school’s academic team coordinator, Maranda Anderson, welcomed the crowd and laid out the rules.

The Area Academic Super Bowl – coordinated by the Indiana Association of School Principals – was held Tuesday at various sites throughout the state.

The annual competition challenges students in grades 9-12 to test their knowledge on a variety of subjects, including science, fine arts, social studies, math and English, as well as an interdisciplinary category.

State scores were expected to be tabulated by Thursday afternoon, determining which teams advance to the Academic Super Bowl state finals May 4.

Ten schools gathered for Tuesday’s area competition at Greenfield-Central High School, which has been an area host site since 2004.

All four Hancock County public high schools competed, and each scored strong in various categories and classes based on school enrollment.

Eastern Hancock was the only Class 3 school to participate while Greenfield-Central, Mt. Vernon and New Palestine competed in Class 1.

In English, Mt. Vernon placed first.

In fine arts, Greenfield-Central and Mt. Vernon tied for first.

In math, Greenfield-Central placed first and New Palestine placed second.

In science, Mt. Vernon placed first and Greenfield-Central third.

In social studies, Greenfield-Central placed first and Mt. Vernon placed second.

Students are able to compete on a maximum of two teams in their areas of interest, in addition to the interdisciplinary team.

Anderson said students read the required books assigned by the question writers at the ISPA to prepare for competition.

Many, if not most, of the questions flashed on a large projector screen in the gym Tuesday likely perplexed a number of parents and other spectators.

“I don’t know how they do it,” said Nancy Mann of Greenfield, who came to watch her granddaughter, Audrey Roberts, compete on Greenfield-Central’s team.

Alex Pearson, a Mt. Vernon High School student, was enjoying his first year on his school’s Academic Super Bowl team.

The 14-year-old freshman said he’s always had a fascination with knowledge and learning as much as he can.

“I’ve always been interested in expanding my academic knowledge, which can kind of get out of hand,” quipped Alex, who said his family might say he gets a bit competitive.

It’s that competitive spirit that drives students like him to absorb facts and figures like a sponge, and to test their knowledge against other high school students in the state.

“I love it. I plan to be here (at the Academic Super Bowl) all four years,” said Alex.

For updates on statewide results, visit