College Cup: Test of Knowledge Event Guide and Singleton Emeritus Decklists

Archmage Emeritus Art by Caio Monteiro
Archmage Emeritus Art by Caio Monteiro

Strixhaven College Cup Guide

Week 1: May 13-18Week 2: May 20-25Week 3: May 27-31
Test of KnowledgeTest of WitTest of Leadership

Hello everyone! Today will be the first guide on the three part event series that is the College Cup. Each week there will be a different variation of a Standard format you can battle in to earn points for your preferred Strixhaven School! Make sure to check out the main guide for the full details.

The first event is called Test of Knowledge and the format is Singleton Emeritus, which means you can have at most one copy of any card in your deck (excluding basic lands), but with a twist: Archmage Emeritus will be overseeing this test. Whenever a player casts or copies an instant or sorcery spell, that player will draw a card!

Event Details

  • Duration: May 13, 2021 at 8:00 AM PST – May 18, at 8:00 AM PST
  • Format: Singleton Emeritus
  • Entry Fee: 2,500 Gold or 500 Gems
  • Ends After: You can keep playing, but rewards do not go past four wins.
  • Match Structure: Best-of-one matches (BO1)

Event Rewards

  • 1 Win: Cultivate Japanese Mystical Archive card style
  • 2 Wins: Thrill of Possibility Japanese Mystical Archive card style
  • 3 Wins: Opt Japanese Mystical Archive card style
  • 4 Wins: Revitalize Japanese Mystical Archive card style

Singleton Emeritus Decklists

I have 7 lists to start you out with, but definitely flex those brewing muscles to see what you can come up with as well. To help you out, there are three things you should consider when building your Singleton Emeritus deck.

1. Play a lot of Instants and Sorceries

Advice like this is why they pay me the big bucks. I know this seems stupidly obvious, but the real tip here is that some color combinations don’t offer enough instants or sorceries to take full advantage of this particular format. You’ll see when looking at my decks that the vast majority of them are Blue as that has the highest incidence of spells in the color pie. You don’t have to play Blue (I branched out for 2 decks), but that’s likely the easiest place to start. That leads me into my next tip nicely.

2. Thassa’s Oracle is Busted

This is both Singleton and Constructed advice wrapped into one! Since you’ll be drawing so many cards, you may get to the point you are running low on library before you can actually win the game. To help prevent that, Thassa’s Oracle can just steal the game away if you’ve spent a lot of time durdling.

3. Play Lower Land Counts

Since we’re presumably playing a lot of instants and sorceries allowing us to draw a bunch of cards, you can definitely work on fewer lands than you’re used to for Constructed decks. I’m not sure the perfect ratio, but keep trimming as needed.

With that out of the way, let’s explore the 7 decks I cooked up for the event!


Monored Singleton 

Creatures (17)
1
Fervent Champion
1
Fireblade Charger
1
Conspiracy Theorist
1
Dragonkin Berserker
1
Heartfire Immolator
1
Kargan Intimidator
1
Magda, Brazen Outlaw
1
Magmatic Channeler
1
Rimrock Knight
1
Robber of the Rich
1
Arni Brokenbrow
1
Bonecrusher Giant
1
Irencrag Pyromancer
1
Phoenix of Ash
1
Torbran, Thane of Red Fell
1
Goldspan Dragon
1
Ox of Agonas
Spells (20)
1
Shatterskull Smashing
1
Song-Mad Treachery
1
Spikefield Hazard
1
Academic Dispute
1
Crash Through
1
Frost Bite
1
Infuriate
1
Satyr's Cunning
1
Shock
1
Blitz of the Thunder-Raptor
1
Fire Prophecy
1
Forbidden Friendship
1
Roil Eruption
1
Thundering Rebuke
1
Demon Bolt
1
Fateful End
1
Flame Spill
1
Igneous Inspiration
1
Slaying Fire
1
Soul Sear
Artifacts (1)
1
Embercleave
Enchantments (1)
1
Anax, Hardened in the Forge
Lands (21)
1
Castle Embereth
1
Dwarven Mine
1
Faceless Haven
18
Snow-Covered Mountain
Cards (60)
Sideboard (7)
1
Environmental Sciences
1
Expanded Anatomy
1
Spirit Summoning
1
Illuminate History
1
Elemental Summoning
1
Introduction to Annihilation
1
Mascot Exhibition

This event is going to have a lot of decks durdling around so it’s a good time to smash face. Play small creatures, keep the pressure on with spells that draw you into more action, win the game.

Monoblue Mill Singleton 

Creatures (8)
1
Merfolk Secretkeeper
1
Ruin Crab
1
Sea Gate Stormcaller
1
Thassa's Oracle
1
Brazen Borrower
1
Gadwick, the Wizened
1
Nadir Kraken
1
Stormwing Entity
Spells (24)
1
Sea Gate Restoration
1
Silundi Vision
1
Concerted Defense
1
Miscast
1
Opt
1
Unsummon
1
Anticipate
1
Curate
1
Deliberate
1
Glimpse of Freedom
1
Into the Roil
1
Maddening Cacophony
1
Negate
1
Sweet Oblivion
1
Didn't Say Please
1
Divide by Zero
1
Neutralize
1
Pop Quiz
1
Saw It Coming
1
Behold the Multiverse
1
Rewind
1
Serpentine Curve
1
Alrund's Epiphany
1
Into the Story
Artifacts (3)
1
Folio of Fancies
1
Vantress Gargoyle
1
Midnight Clock
Enchantments (3)
1
Teferi's Tutelage
1
Teferi's Ageless Insight
1
Shark Typhoon
Lands (22)
1
Castle Vantress
20
Island
1
Mystic Sanctuary
Cards (60)
Sideboard (7)
1
Environmental Sciences
1
Fractal Summoning
1
Introduction to Prophecy
1
Teachings of the Archaics
1
Elemental Summoning
1
Introduction to Annihilation
1
Mascot Exhibition

Since so many people are going to be drawing an excess amount of cards, may as well help thin their deck a bit! Most games are likely to go decently long and will involve a lot of card draw so actively milling them as well can make it really likely that they die to their own draws!

Golgari Ramp Singleton 

Planeswalkers (3)
1
Garruk, Cursed Huntsman
1
Professor Onyx
1
Ugin, the Spirit Dragon
Creatures (14)
1
Kazandu Mammoth
1
Tangled Florahedron
1
Valki, God of Lies
1
Foulmire Knight
1
Jolrael, Mwonvuli Recluse
1
Witherbloom Apprentice
1
Llanowar Visionary
1
Lovestruck Beast
1
Murderous Rider
1
Rosethorn Acolyte
1
Sedgemoor Witch
1
Gnarled Professor
1
Polukranos, Unchained
1
Beanstalk Giant
Spells (20)
1
Bala Ged Recovery
1
Hagra Mauling
1
Bloodchief's Thirst
1
Charge Through
1
Cling to Dust
1
Duress
1
Fruit of Tizerus
1
Agonizing Remorse
1
Cram Session
1
Emergent Sequence
1
Heartless Act
1
Hunt for Specimens
1
Witherbloom Command
1
Cultivate
1
Field Trip
1
Inscription of Ruin
1
Soul Shatter
1
Migration Path
1
Once and Future
1
Harness Infinity
Enchantments (1)
1
Binding the Old Gods
Lands (22)
1
Blightstep Pathway
1
Cragcrown Pathway
1
Darkbore Pathway
4
Forest
1
Jungle Hollow
1
Mountain
1
Necroblossom Snarl
1
Rugged Highlands
7
Swamp
1
Temple of Abandon
1
Temple of Malady
1
Temple of Malice
1
Witherbloom Campus
Cards (60)
Sideboard (7)
1
Environmental Sciences
1
Fractal Summoning
1
Inkling Summoning
1
Necrotic Fumes
1
Pest Summoning
1
Introduction to Annihilation
1
Mascot Exhibition

If you want to play a more midrangey deck for the event, here’s your chance. We have solid creatures, cheap spells, and strong top end. Not much more you can ask for.

Izzet Spells Singleton 

Planeswalkers (1)
1
The Royal Scions
Creatures (14)
1
Faerie Vandal
1
Heartfire Immolator
1
Jeskai Elder
1
Magmatic Channeler
1
Sea Gate Stormcaller
1
Sprite Dragon
1
Thassa's Oracle
1
Bonecrusher Giant
1
Brazen Borrower
1
Gadwick, the Wizened
1
Irencrag Pyromancer
1
Galazeth Prismari
1
Goldspan Dragon
1
Stormwing Entity
Spells (22)
1
Shatterskull Smashing
1
Academic Dispute
1
Opt
1
Purphoros's Intervention
1
Shock
1
Blitz of the Thunder-Raptor
1
Curate
1
Deliberate
1
Expressive Iteration
1
Forbidden Friendship
1
Roil Eruption
1
Demon Bolt
1
Divide by Zero
1
Igneous Inspiration
1
Pop Quiz
1
Prismari Command
1
Behold the Multiverse
1
Experimental Overload
1
Goblin Wizardry
1
Serpentine Curve
1
Alrund's Epiphany
1
Magma Opus
Enchantments (1)
1
Improbable Alliance
Lands (22)
1
Frostboil Snarl
8
Island
8
Mountain
1
Prismari Campus
1
Riverglide Pathway
1
Swiftwater Cliffs
1
Temple of Epiphany
1
Volatile Fjord
Cards (60)
Sideboard (7)
1
Environmental Sciences
1
Fractal Summoning
1
Introduction to Prophecy
1
Spirit Summoning
1
Teachings of the Archaics
1
Elemental Summoning
1
Mascot Exhibition

This is an event focused on casting a bunch of instants and sorceries, may as well build harder around that! We have a bunch of the spell and draw 2 payoffs for Standard all jammed in here to maximize the value per instant and sorcery.

Dimir Control Singleton 

Planeswalkers (2)
1
Ashiok, Nightmare Muse
1
Professor Onyx
Creatures (4)
1
Thassa's Oracle
1
Gadwick, the Wizened
1
Murderous Rider
1
Lochmere Serpent
Spells (28)
1
Hagra Mauling
1
Sea Gate Restoration
1
Silundi Vision
1
Cling to Dust
1
Erebos's Intervention
1
Opt
1
Anticipate
1
Cram Session
1
Curate
1
Deliberate
1
Drown in the Loch
1
Glimpse of Freedom
1
Heartless Act
1
Hunt for Specimens
1
Into the Roil
1
Negate
1
Thassa's Intervention
1
Neutralize
1
Pop Quiz
1
Saw It Coming
1
Soul Shatter
1
Whirlwind Denial
1
Behold the Multiverse
1
Extinction Event
1
Rewind
1
Serpentine Curve
1
Rise of Extus
1
Alrund's Epiphany
Artifacts (1)
1
Midnight Clock
Enchantments (1)
1
Shark Typhoon
Lands (24)
1
Clearwater Pathway
1
Dismal Backwater
1
Ice Tunnel
10
Island
1
Port of Karfell
9
Swamp
1
Temple of Deceit
Cards (60)
Sideboard (7)
1
Environmental Sciences
1
Fractal Summoning
1
Introduction to Prophecy
1
Pest Summoning
1
Elemental Summoning
1
Introduction to Annihilation
1
Mascot Exhibition

What better way to take advantage of drawing a card everytime you cast a spell than a Control deck? Stymie the opponent’s game plan with interaction then go over the top with a Planeswalker or Thassa’s Oracle!

Jeskai Control Singleton 

Creatures (4)
1
Thassa's Oracle
1
Bonecrusher Giant
1
Dream Trawler
1
Velomachus Lorehold
Spells (33)
1
Emeria's Call
1
Ondu Inversion
1
Shatterskull Smashing
1
Silundi Vision
1
Valakut Awakening
1
Opt
1
Blitz of the Thunder-Raptor
1
Curate
1
Deliberate
1
Expressive Iteration
1
Glimpse of Freedom
1
Into the Roil
1
Negate
1
Revitalize
1
Rip Apart
1
Thassa's Intervention
1
Neutralize
1
Prismari Command
1
Saw It Coming
1
Whirlwind Denial
1
Behold the Multiverse
1
Draconic Intervention
1
Experimental Overload
1
Rewind
1
Serpentine Curve
1
Shatter the Sky
1
Starnheim Unleashed
1
Storm's Wrath
1
Doomskar
1
Lorehold Command
1
Practical Research
1
Alrund's Epiphany
1
Magma Opus
Enchantments (1)
1
Shark Typhoon
Lands (22)
1
Fabled Passage
1
Frostboil Snarl
1
Furycalm Snarl
1
Gates of Istfell
1
Hengegate Pathway
6
Island
2
Mountain
1
Needleverge Pathway
3
Plains
1
Raugrin Triome
1
Riverglide Pathway
1
Temple of Enlightenment
1
Temple of Epiphany
1
Temple of Triumph
Cards (60)

Your second flavor of Control for the event. This Control variant has cheaper interaction compare to Dimir and you get fun cards like Velochus Lorehold and Magma Opus to kill the opponent!

Sultai Ultimatum Singleton 

Planeswalkers (1)
1
Professor Onyx
Creatures (6)
1
Tangled Florahedron
1
Thassa's Oracle
1
Lovestruck Beast
1
Rosethorn Acolyte
1
Vorinclex, Monstrous Raider
1
Beanstalk Giant
Spells (28)
1
Bala Ged Recovery
1
Hagra Mauling
1
Sea Gate Restoration
1
Silundi Vision
1
Opt
1
Anticipate
1
Curate
1
Deliberate
1
Emergent Sequence
1
Glimpse of Freedom
1
Heartless Act
1
Into the Roil
1
Negate
1
Cultivate
1
Field Trip
1
Grim Tutor
1
Pop Quiz
1
Roiling Regrowth
1
Saw It Coming
1
Solve the Equation
1
Behold the Multiverse
1
Eureka Moment
1
Extinction Event
1
Migration Path
1
Mortality Spear
1
Boon of the Wish-Giver
1
Alrund's Epiphany
1
Emergent Ultimatum
Artifacts (1)
1
Wishclaw Talisman
Enchantments (3)
1
Wolfwillow Haven
1
Shark Typhoon
1
Kiora Bests the Sea God
Lands (21)
1
Barkchannel Pathway
1
Clearwater Pathway
1
Darkbore Pathway
1
Fabled Passage
4
Forest
3
Island
1
Necroblossom Snarl
3
Swamp
1
Temple of Deceit
1
Temple of Malady
1
Temple of Mystery
1
The World Tree
1
Vineglimmer Snarl
1
Zagoth Triome
Cards (60)
Sideboard (7)
1
Environmental Sciences
1
Fractal Summoning
1
Introduction to Prophecy
1
Pest Summoning
1
Elemental Summoning
1
Introduction to Annihilation
1
Mascot Exhibition

You thought you could escape Standard that easily? For the devil in all of us, you can play a version of Sultai Ultimatum that’s just as devastating as the Standard version when the Ultimatum resolves.

Thank you for reading! Hope you enjoy the College Cup!

DoggertQBones

Robert "DoggertQBones" Lee is the content manager of MTGAZone and a high ranked Arena player. He has one GP Top 8 and pioneered popular archetypes like UB 8 Shark, UB Yorion, and GW Company in Historic. Beyond Magic, his passions are writing and coaching! Join our community on Twitch and Discord.

13 Responses

  1. Zach says:

    Emergent Ultimatum is banned…

  2. MRG says:

    From the site:
    https://magic.wizards.com/en/articles/archive/magic-digital/college-cup-here-strixhaven-2021-05-05

    “To keep this test from spiraling outside of the control of even the Founder Dragons, these cards have been added to the Standard banned list for this test:

    Blood Aspirant
    Emergent Ultimatum
    Galazeth Prismari
    Gilded Assault Cart
    Goldspan Dragon
    Korvold, Fae-Cursed King
    Lutri, the Spellchaser
    Magda, Brazen Outlaw
    Shimmer Dragon
    Yasharn, Implacable Earth”

  3. Matt Wigdahl says:

    I’ve been having a ton of success with a Dragon’s Approach deck:

    Cathartic Reunion
    Conspiracy Theorist
    Fire Prophecy
    Thrill of Possibility
    Tibalt’s Trickery
    Tormenting Voice
    Valakut Awakening
    Codie, Vociferous Codex
    Leyline Tyrant
    Goldspan Dragon
    Terror of the Peaks
    Hellkite Punisher
    24x Dragon’s Approach
    24x Mountain

    Mull aggressively to get a hand with at least two land and a draw/discard spell, burying any actual dragons in your hand back into the deck (dumping a Dragon’s Approach or two into the bin on T2 is pretty key), then start slamming as many Dragon’s Approach as you can. Codie on 3 has been good for me, still not quite sure if Conspiracy Theorist is good in the deck or not.

    Fire Prophecy and Valakut Awakening can help return dragons you draw back to your hand.

  4. Max Muster says:

    went 4-1 with Golgari ramp! Thanks for the list!

  5. Mill Enthusiast says:

    Dimir is so busted in this format. I ran a Dimir mill deck and holy heck was it degenerate. It ran Underworld Dreams to punish opponent’s card draws while I had Teferi’s Tutelage just keep milling them with a Sweet Oblivion to boot. Also had a ton of counters.
    As much as I’d hate playing against myself, I’d do anything for those sweet alternate arts.

  6. shammond says:

    The Izzet Spells deck is really fun! I went 4-1, with 2 wins from opponents just conceding once the triggers started going off. Thanks for the decklists.

  7. Morias says:

    I’ve had a ton of success with an Silverquill Aggro deck using the cheap pump adventure creatures alongside lurrus thats won me tons of games against control and other aggro decks