Originally Posted by donnymac10s
If the USTA takes all the money out of PD - all the resources being wasted away (http://catennis.squarespace.com/most...velopment.html
) - and uses the money to support mid-level pros, more players are going to work hard at U12s, U14s, U16s, U18s and college. This would produce better, tougher players at every level.. Players who know that there could be a future with tennis. Currently, only 00.5796% of the total USTA revenue goes to actual individual player development..drop in a bucket...useless. They could easily give every top 500 player $20K/year; every top 300 player $30K/year. They could couple it with either a repayment plan for participating players (or have the players donate time growing the game in inner-city areas or non-tennis hotspots). Right now, only the truly well-off (or the really, really good) can afford to stay on tour and grind through the mid-levels. Problem is that, given our system, we are not producing really good players and the rich kids have no fight. Think about it...
This all sounds nice but is not going to do anything really. Like I said the USA public needs top 10 players who are real threats to win grand slam championships. Those are the only players who will get sponsored by the big companies and be stars. Sorry but those type of players will not come from grinding it out in the low level pros. Nadal and Federer and all the star tennis players made large jumps once they were later teens. The odds of a player grinding it out for years and then being a superstar the USA needs is so small it is not realistic to aim your USTA money that way. I do agree the USTA could do more to help more of the young players but the next kid good enough to the Tiger Woods of USA tennis will shoot like a super nova onto the scene as a 17 or 18 year old, probably be top 100 young and then into the top 20 very fast. None of the top 10 players spend much time at ranking 500 or even 300, well maybe it happens but would be pretty rare. We have something like 35 top 500 guy players right now and having 50 instead will not make a difference, anyone good enough to be top 10 will move quickly. I will give you Mardy Fish taking his time but that was due to some issues he had with work ethic and other things so it was not the grinding that made him top 10. In fact he might have been better off maturing in college and then his rise up the pros might have been fast.