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Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Northwestern, Ohio State Top Both ITA Team and Individual Rankings

At long last, the ITA team rankings for the spring season have been released, and two Big Ten teams top the list. The Northwestern Wildcats are the top choice for the women, receiving 17 first place votes, while the California Bears are in second, although they received only one first place vote. Third, but with 14 first place votes is 2008 NCAA champion UCLA and Baylor is in fourth place. For complete women's team rankings, click here.

In the men's rankings, Ohio State is at the top, also the recipient of 17 first-place votes, while Texas is second with four first place votes, and 2008 NCAA champion Georgia is third, with 10 first place votes. UCLA is fourth. For complete men's team rankings, click here. It's interesting that both current NCAA champions placed third, with the two finalists from 2008 in second place.

The rankings are likely to change, how dramatically remains to be seen, after next month's Team Indoor Championships. For the new regional team qualifying sites and participants, see the ITA's Kick-off Weekend page.

In the individual rankings, Northwestern's sophomore Maria Mosolova is at the No. 1 position, although she did not win either of the fall individual tournaments. Ohio State's Bryan Koniecko, a senior, is atop the men's rankings, having won the Indoor in November. Ohio State claims three of the top six spots, with Steven Moneke at No. 3 and Justin Kronauge at No. 6. For the complete men's singles rankings, click here. For the women's singles, click here.

A word of caution: do not rely on the class next to the player's name. For some reason there are frequent errors in this designation, and it is important to check the school's website before referring to a player's class year.

And since we're on the subject of college tennis, Marcia Frost has recently posted a wrap of the fall college season at collegeandjuniortennis.com. And Mert Ertunga, former women's coach of the University of Alabama-Birmingham, posted this column for Sports Central, entitled "The Overlooked Importance of College Tennis."