Originally Posted by Dadof10s
I think you are mistaken of why we have few superstars now. Our wonderful athletic children are drawn to other sports, tennis is down on the list in USA but is right after soccer in some other countries. Lots of players get support in USA, I know coaches who train them for free and make sure the USTA knows who they are. You are shooting the wrong target, the target should be trying to get great little athletes to play tennis but why would they? They can go down to the corner and play basketball with their friends and they see famous basketball players on TV all the time. Like I said coaches who trained our kids and others look out for prodigies and they get support. Sorry to say this but most of the children who would have a chance to the lions you want may be playing different sports. Europeans love tennis more than we do so they can we can convince their children to play it more than we can do that. Kids good enough to be top professionals would not give up anyway and I bet their coach or parents would tell the USTA about them and they would end up supported. Just because a player aims for college would not mean they would be good enough to be top professionals because their talent would become obvious at a young age.
I disagree...I don't think that our struggles in producing top-10 players is due to lack of athleticism. Tennis is more about skill (which costs hundreds of thousands of dollars to develop) than anything else. Athleticism can be developed as part of the process. I believe that our problems stem from the fact that most players/parents do not see a pro career as feasible. So they half-***** the development and think that college is going to act some sort of a stepping stone. If more players, beginning with U10, U12, etc. believe that there's a slightly better than remote chance of being able to play pro due to support from the USTA, they will try harder in the initial stages - thereby producing tougher and higher quality players at every stage. Eventually, a group of world-beaters will bubble through.