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Friday, May 4, 2012

Ojai Junior Championship Recap; TV For NCAA Championships; Focus on D-I College Tennis Features From Around the Country as NCAAs Near

The Tennis Recruiting Network published two recaps today of the junior tournaments held at the Ojai last weekend. Ali Jones reviewed the final of the girls and boys 14s and the girls 16s in this one,  and the boys 16s, girls 18s and boys CIF in this one.

And while you're over at Tennis Recruiting, fill out your NCAA Division I men's and women's bracket in their May Madness competition for a chance to win some great prizes.

Some very exciting news was brought to my attention today by Amanda Pruitt, the tennis SID at Tennessee.  The NCAA will be offering live streaming of the men's and women's tennis championships in Athens at ncaa.com (and the Division II and Division III tennis champions too) via Turner Sports, which assures television-level production values.  Read more about the agreement here. Right now the first day of the women's competition in Athens isn't showing on the schedule; I hope that's an oversight.  This is just outstanding news after months of thinking there would be nothing at all with ESPNU bowing out.  There will undoubtedly be some glitches and disappointments, but it's certainly a step in the right direction.

As the college regular season winds down and the NCAA loom larger on the horizon, the feature stories, particularly about seniors, start to appear in college and local newspapers and on university websites.  In the past couple of weeks, I've collected more than a few of them, and I'll pass the links along via the player's name, with just a few brief comments of my own. As a before and after exercise, I'm including the pre-college articles I wrote on some of them for Tennis Recruiting Network; you will need an account there to see the entire article.

Dennis Nevolo - the longest of these, in two parts (Part I and Part II) spotlights the Illinois senior, who is the No. 7 seed in the individual tournament. It was written prior to the Illini's upset of Ohio State last weekend. Here's my article on Nevolo's commitment to Illinois in October 2007. Links to my articles on the players below are available by clicking the date.

Lauren Embree - This article focuses on the Florida junior, seeded No. 9-16 in the upcoming individual tournament, and her doubles partner senior Joanna Mather. (July 2008)

Allie Will - This article is less about top seed Will and more about Florida's home winning streak  (July 2009)

Beatrice Capra - This article features Duke freshman Capra's transition from a year off playing pro tennis to the college game.  (September 2009 and February 2011)

Jarmere JenkinsThis article explores Virginia's quest for the NCAA title, with most of the quotes from senior Drew Courtney. Jenkins is seeded No. 4 in the tournament.  (January 2008)

Mitchell Frank - I think I just tweeted this link to the Sports Illustrated piece on No. 2 seed Frank, since it came out while I was covering juniors in California. (March 2012)

Bradley Klahn - An article about the 2010 NCAA champion, who has graduated early from Stanford, giving himself the opportunity to devote all his energy to recovering from back surgery and preparing for the NCAAs.  (June 2007)

Wil Spencer - This article is about the four Georgia seniors, including Spencer, a 9-16 seed.  (October 2007)

The remaining current articles don't have any Tennis Recruiting counterparts:

Kristi Boxx - An article on the Ole Miss senior, who is a 9-16 seed in the tournament.

Marcos Giron - A Q and A with No. 4 seed UCLA's freshman.

Nicole Gibbs - This article tracks the No. 3 seed from Stanford's Pac-12 women's title last weekend.

Steve Johnson - This article on the defending NCAA champion and No. 1 seed from USC puts Johnson in context with the history at the Ojai.

Natalie Beazant - A look at the Rice freshman, who knew little about college tennis as an English junior, but now has qualified for the NCAA individual tournament.

Jason Tahir and Raphael Hemmeler - An article on the two Duke freshman starting for the No. 8 Blue Devils.

Diana Nakic - This article is on the Baylor senior, who is a 9-16 seed in the individual tournament.

Zsofia Susanyi - This article focuses on the Cal freshman, who is a 9-16 seed in the individual tournament.


Austin said...

espnU pulled out? Wow, thats lame.