But an unholy trinity was at the top. J. C. del Real, whose father was a lawyer in the Reagan administration, was the classic bully. Consider the afternoon, in the fall of 1982, when he walked through the student lounge with his crew, picked up a small freshman named Tim, and stuffed him in a garbage can, while J.C.’s friends erupted in laughter. Bill Barbot, Tim’s self-described pipsqueak buddy, pulled him out. He can still recall Tim’s light-colored khakis, which now had pizza sauce all over them. “I was like, Man, this sucks,” Barbot recalls thinking, as it dawned on him what he was in for that year.

Kavanaugh, according to some former classmates, was not the central showman, but rather an eager sidekick. An alum who knew Kavanaugh well recalls, “He had the attitude of ‘I’m the man, I’m a badass, and everybody else is kind of a loser. I do what I want. I get what I want.’ He was more of a dick, for lack of a better word. I wish I had a more descriptive word. He was just a dick.” Another alum, from ’84, dismisses Kavanaugh as a hopeless wannabe: “He was kind of lame.” According to Paul Rendon, class of ’83, who provided a declaration to Congress, “Kavanaugh never did anything to stop this physical and verbal abuse, but stood by and laughed at the victims. . . . Brett Kavanaugh would always laugh the loudest when it was in response to Mark Judge’s jokes and antics.”

Judge took the cake. He was the loudest, edgiest, baddest ass. He was also the heartthrob. In Breakfast Club terms, you might say he had the dangerous allure of Judd Nelson’s Bender combined with the popularity of Emilio Estevez’s Andrew Clark. His body couldn’t contain his energy. He would leap onto people’s backs to start games of chicken. He could place his hands on a banister and jettison his body over an entire stairwell.