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Monday, July 23, 2007

News Beyond Clay Courts--Nats Wild Cards, Young Wins Aptos, Proposal for allowing $10,000 in earnings for juniors pre-college

I'm glad to be back in Michigan, where the temperature is only 6 or 8 degrees cooler than Florida, but the humidity is 60 to 80 percent less. The Nats at the Zoo banners are up on all the downtown light poles and in ten days, the whole city will be buzzing with activity related to the tournament. I like the idea of a "pick Kalamazoo's winners" contest; I'll put up a post in a few days where you can select your choices for the National Champions. For the wild card recipients, see the ustaboys.com home page article, and for the list of participants, click here (green is 16s, blue is 18s).

Donald Young, who turns 18 today, won the $75K Aptos challenger Sunday, his first title on that level. The Santa Cruz Sentinel provides this very detailed account of the finals match. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has a feature profile today on Young as well.

The big news for college tennis this past weekend was the announcement that the ITA was submitting a proposal to the NCAA that would "allow prospects in the sport as much as $10,000 in prize money annually before entering college. Current guidelines restrict them from pocketing any amount exceeding the expenses they incur from participating in an event," according to a story published Friday in USA Today. The article details the reasons behind such a change, which are primarily to put U.S. juniors on the same footing as young foreign players. It seems sensible to me, so sensible that I wonder if it has a chance with the NCAA.

One correction to the USA Today story; Brian Boland's Virginia Cavaliers did not finish second to Georgia this year. They lost to them in the semifinals. Illinois was in the finals against the Bulldogs.


Austin said...

I wished DY3 would play at the Zoo, but I guess chasing history isn't on his to-do list. Three 'Zoo titles is something that might not ever have been topped. I don't really blame him though since he already has his wildcard evidently.

The ease in which he won Aptos last week was very impressive, just dominated all the second sets from the quarters on.

David said...

It's hard not to be impressed. I'm excited for him. He's regained his confidence (according to his own words) and is starting to prove his critics wrong.

It's interesting that Reynolds praised his forehand. That's usually cited as a weakness of Young's game. It seems that the players who actually compete or practice against Young have a much higher opinion of him than most message board posters.

Man in the Moon said...

Congrats to Donald Young on winning his first Challenger.

Just so there isn't any misunderstanding. I always said he had great hands, speed, smarts, angles, etc, his downfall is his fight and heart, not even his height to a great degree.

There is a great difference between being ATP #150, 100, 50 and top 20 and of course top 10 and 5.

I have always said he has the stuff to be top ATP 40-70. He is a good player, but not as good as everyone thinks.

I still don't think he has the stuff to be as good as the "EXPERTS" say (top 10 or better).

I don't think he will be a franchise type player (top 10) like most people think, but a journeyman. Not there is anything wrong with being a journey man - except you don't earn any money of note.

This is not said out of envy or being negative- it is just my opinion and every one is entitled to an opinion. This is what I see in Young as a tennis player.

The only caveat to my thoughts are-- he has to change what he is doing in reference to heart and fight, if he does change -that would be a different story.

david said...

I don't think your prediction of top 40-70 is all that unreasonable, but it seems that Young has showed some fight recently. He was down 6-2, 5-1 to Lee yesterday and was one point away from squaring the set at 5-5. He also came from behind in Aptos. He was down 5-2 to Amritraj before winning the next eight games. It certainly doesn't appear that he's folding when the going gets tough.

Man in the Moon said...


you are one of only a few people who agree with my ATP 40-70,now.

Two years ago- nobody agreed with my analysis. People are now starting to agree with my thoughts, but not many.

He still has a very, very long way to go to be top 40-70 even if he improves his heart and fight.

Paul Goldstein also has great hands, speed, smarts, angles and was a fighter from the word go, probably one of the best competitors on the pro tour now and he only achieve a top ranking of 50. He did it without any fanfare or experts saying he was going to be top 10.

I hope that Young can learn, but I just don't see top 10 in any way, shape or form from Young.

Let's see what happens!!!

David said...

I actually think top 50 is a fairly safe bet for Young. He may be a couple years away from getting there, but at the rate he's going, I'll be surprised if he doesn't reach that level eventually. I wouldn't rule out him being a bit worse than that, but players with his credentials usually don't stall outside the top 100.

Man in the Moon said...

David once again I agree with your thought process.

It is a very tough road and most people really don't understand how tough it is, unless you are really around the game of high level junior, collegiate and ATP tennis.

Anonymous said...

On your Correction,
UVa DID finish 2nd . . . in the official ITA rankings.

If UVa had been on the Illinois/Baylor/OSU side of the bracket they would have reached the finals.