Paul L. Caron

Saturday, April 15, 2023

The U.S. News Law School Rankings: Say Hello To The New T14

US News (2023)Update:

Following up on this week's posts:

David Lat (Original Jurisdiction), The U.S. News Rankings: Say Hello To The New T14:

Some observations: ...

  • [T]hese are the same 14 schools as the traditional T14, with one exception—UCLA edging out Georgetown for #14.
  • Stanford Law has caught up with Yale Law—not just in disruptive protests, but in U.S. News. For what I believe to be the first time in the rankings, Yale is tied for #1 rather than alone at #1. Is this a sign that SLS is gaining on YLS, such that Stanford might be the undisputed #1 in some future year? Stay tuned.
  • As was the case in last year’s rankings, the “Holy Trinity” of “HYS”—Harvard, Yale, Stanford—was disrupted. Once again, Chicago took the #3 spot, ahead of Harvard, and Harvard had to share the #4 spot—last year with Columbia, this year with Penn. (Sniffed a friend of mine who’s an HLS alum, “HLS tied with UPenn shows these rankings are meaningless.”) ...
  • Overall, there wasn’t much movement within the T14—and I’m guessing this was by design, with U.S. News and rankings guru Bob Morse experimenting with different weightings of factors until they got a result that looked “right.” Of the 14 schools, only four moved by more than a single spot. The schools that moved up by more than one spot were Duke (+5), Northwestern (+3), and Penn (+2), and only one school moved down by more than one spot, Columbia (-4).
  • For a long time, Columbia and NYU were seen as “T6” schools (along with HYS plus Chicago). But now NYU is back in the T6, after falling to #7 last year, while Columbia has been relegated to #8. Recruiting for CLS just got harder—and I suspect this U.S. News drop will have far more of an impact than the recruiting boycott of various affinity groups in the wake of the Columbia Law Instagram controversy. (By the way, the Instagram post in question is still up—and I’m guessing that it will be staying up, boycott or not.)

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