For many, it won't be their first rodeo. In fact, Alyssa Shick is a returning national champion in the Propaganda category. She was an eighth-grader who understood the art of influence better than anyone else in this country.
She will be joined by Carlitto Motter, Robbie Moffitt, Christina Bullard, Kaizer Ladylak and Adam Luther.
Outside the school's office sits a quorum of "Thinkers" based on the famed Rodin statue. These represent the excellence and success Ivell's Knights have demonstrated since he took over the gifted program 17 years ago.
"Most of this group is beyond my abilities," he said of the current half-dozen Franklin competitors.
These games are not just a simple matter of luck of the dice. It takes preparation to understand the games, accumulation of a broad knowledge of facts, and teamwork to come out on top.
Each team member specializes somewhat in different areas, but they all are ready to compete in categories like linguistics, grammar, equations, logic, presidents, world and current events, and propaganda.
(Editor's note, when the competition is finished, we have been promised a full report on this article's use of propaganda. We'll see how we did?)
Luther, who will compete at nationals for the first time, seems to have a gift for linguistics, but in a quick match during class lost to Motter. "It's kind of like advanced Scrabble," Luther said while explaining the way the LinguiSHTIK game is played.
For the upcoming competition, they will compete in strategic groups where they pit their individual strengths against those of other schools across the county. Franklin kids may be able to team up with other area schools in certain competitions as well.
The team will be given a "clap out" at 2 p.m. Wednesday as the school shows support for these athletes of the mind.