Feature on USTA National Coach Rinaldi; US Open National Sectional Playoffs Now Accepting Entries; NCAA Considers Revising Several Recruiting Regulations
USTA National Coach Kathy Rinaldi was presented with the Tennis Education Merit Award at this month's USTA annual meeting in Florida, which prompted this article from columnist Ray McNulty at the Scripps Treasure Coast newspapers. I was surprised to read that Rinaldi has only been with the USTA for four years--she began in December of 2008--but I've seen her at so many tournaments, in so many places that it's hard to remember the days before she was employed by the USTA.
Rinaldi is no longer working with Taylor Townsend, who now works with the USTA's Juan Todero according to Matt Cronin's reporting from Indian Wells, but Rinaldi continues to coach Samantha Crawford and has served as Junior Fed Cup coach the past several years. Rinaldi is quoted as saying “I absolutely love my job; it’s the best job in the world," and if you see her at a tournament, you can't help but see how much she enjoys it. But it's a difficult job too, one that requires a great deal of travel, away from her family, and the regular daily routine so many coaches prefer. With few women coaches at the USTA, or at the highest level of tennis anywhere, it's important to recognize those who are, those who can serve as role models and inspirations to others.
Earlier this month the USTA announced the fourth annual US Open National Playoffs with US Open qualifying wild cards for men's and women's singles and a main draw wild card for mixed doubles again going to the National winners.
The competition begins with qualifying in 13 sections, with all the events in May or June this year. The Southwest section kicks it off, on May 18th, and the Missouri Valley section concludes it, June 27-30. Any USTA member age 14 and older may participate, in any of the sections they wish to enter. The fee, which had been $125 in past years, is down to $100 now for singles, while the mixed doubles is $120 per team.
The 13 sectional winners advance to the National finals at Yale at the end of August. Pop star Red Foo, the significant other of Victoria Azarenka, has entered, according to this release from the USTA. He will be playing in the Northern California section's tournament.
For more information, go to usopen.org.
The NCAA has announced that several of the regulations scheduled to be changed as of this summer are being reviewed, due to a sufficient number of override requests in one case, and its committee's own revision in two others.
The regulation that was to allow unlimited text and telephone communication with recruits will be reviewed, an action necessary when the required 75 schools requested that it be reconsidered. The committee itself said it would review deregulating print materials and who could perform recruiting tasks. The prohibition of live scouting also proved unpopular and will be reviewed. For the NCAA announcement of these review and reconsiderations, click here.