Wednesday, November 18, 2020

NCAA Extends D-1 Recruiting Dead Period Through April 15; Kudla, Eubanks Advance to Quarterfinals at Orlando Challenger; Semifinals Set at San Diego Grade 5; WCC Cancels Conference Tournament

The NCAA announced this evening that the Division I recruiting dead period will be extended through April 15th for all sports. According to the NCAA release:

“The COVID-19 numbers are not trending in the right direction for the Council to allow in-person recruiting and the associated long-distance travel for coaches, prospective student-athletes and their families,” said Council chair M. Grace Calhoun, athletics director at Pennsylvania. “We acknowledge the impact the restrictions are having on student-athletes who dream of being Division I athletes, but we must prioritize the health and safety of current and potential student-athletes and their families, as well as coaches and others on campus.”

I'm not clear on why current student-athletes can travel and compete in contact sports, but perspective student-athletes aren't allowed a visit, but the NCAA has shown no flexibility in this particular area of its jurisdiction. This extension now means that more than a year will have gone by before coaches can actually see recruits in person at tournaments, at home, or on campus. 

At the ATP Challenger 80 today at the USTA National Campus, Denis Kudla and Christopher Eubanks won their second round matches, advancing to a quarterfinal meeting on Friday. Kudla, the No. 2 seed and last week's champion at the Cary Challenger, defeated wild card Patrick Kypson(Texas A&M) 6-4, 6-4. Eubanks(Georgia Tech) defeated Hiroki Moriya of Japan 6-2, 6-1.  2019 Kalamazoo 18 champion Zachary Svajda, a qualifier, battled No. 7 seed Dmitry Popko of Kazakhstan for over three hours, but lost 7-5, 1-6, 7-5. 

Thursday's second round matches will feature six Americans: Brandon Nakashima(Virginia) vs. top seed Thiago Montiero of Brazil; No. 8 seed Mackenzie McDonald(UCLA) vs. Elias Ymer of Sweden; Bjorn Fratangelo vs. Mitchell Krueger and Nick Chappell(TCU) vs. Alexander Ritschard(Virginia). 

The semifinals are set at the ITF Junior Circuit Grade 5 in San Diego, with four seeds moving on in the girls draw, but just one seed in the boys draw.

No. 2 seed Lucas Brown will play unseeded Wil Jenkins of Great Britain and unseeded Sebastian Sec will face qualifier Zane Ford. 

In the all-USA girls semifinals, No. 6 seed Calissa Dellabarca will play No. 5 seed Vivian Ovrootsky and No. 2 seed Jennifer Riester takes on No. 7 seed Kimmi Hance. 

In a cost-cutting move, the West Coast Conference has announced it is dropping the conference tournaments for men's and women's tennis, along with men's baseball. The regular season champions will receive the NCAA bids.