Foreign Players

Discussion in 'College Tennis Talk' started by ccs, May 3, 2017.

  1. ccs

    ccs New User

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    I follow lower level tennis trends. Nobody close to me is playing anymore but I saw my share of foreign players in Division 2. This years womens final 16 teams are the most foreign I have seen yet. 11 American to 85 foreign in singles. Is division 1 this bad? I don't even know if people think this is a problem, or if this is a problem if there is any solution. Something just doesn't seem right.
     
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  2. Herb

    Herb Rookie

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    D1 is just the same. You will find schools that are almost all American player, and schools that are all foreign players. Here at Tech the women's team is 50/50 and the men are 5 foreign and 3 Americans. I know I string a lot more foreign players than I do American during the season.
     
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  3. Nacho

    Nacho Professional

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    Approximate figures are that tennis scholarships are about 67% in the hands of International players. Internationals have been around for a long time, but the numbers are have been overwhelming since the early 2000's. Some coaches are good at sourcing local US talent, other exclusively recruit Internationals, with some others under contracts with Agencies to bring in International talent.

    To make it more complex, tennis programs are dropped because of budgets and scholarships to equal out Title IX, but all it is doing is helping International Women. Other programs are dropped because there is no school support, or attachment to the team

    However IMO, the root of the issue is in Junior tennis. There are not enough American Jr's playing at a high UTR to even compete on most teams, maybe 50-75 a year are even good enough, and they get scooped up quickly by high profile programs. The rest can't compete. Parents pull out good Jr's at age 14/15 to play other sports because tennis is too expensive and inexcessible.

    Issue starts with Jr tennis in America, but is also reflective of coaches going this route because they think its a surer thing. I am not sure the talent level is always that much better....

    Most American Jr's if they want to play tennis are playing the USTA Tennis on Campus. And I have heard in some situations get more student support then the Varsity team....Sad

    Getting worse before better....
     
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  4. hound 109

    hound 109 Semi-Pro

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    You've made this statement many times and have never provided any proof to back it up. I disagree with most of this post.

    1. There are plenty of Juniors with high enough UTRs (ranked from say 100 to 350 on TRN) who could easily play line 3-6 at mid level and low level D1s.
    2. Parents don't "pull good Jrs out at age 14/15". A small number do, but most of these kids soldier on and just go a different path.
    3. A small number also do the Tennis on Campus at Elite schools (because they got an academic scholarship there, or because they are done with tennis). But most (like over 70% of kids with UTRs of 11.5 - 12.5 & are 150-300 on TRN) go on to play D3, D2 or low level D1.

    UTR would suggest that (for Mid Major D1 & Low Level D1) there are MANY US Juniors that are passed over for Foreign players with lower UTRs.

    The combination of this fact....& the fact that there is only 25-50% scholarship money available (for boys...because of Title 9) has MANY Boy Juniors opting for D3 (over Mid Major D1, Low Level D1 - & the small number of D2 schools that will even respond to an American kid's email, text or phone call). The Top 50 kids go Elite D1 & Ivy. But then you start to see a shift. The next 50 are evenly split between Elite D1, Ivy, Mid Majors (probably full rides) & D3. The next 50 split even between Mid Majors, Ivy & D3. Most of these first 150 players are 12.5-13.5 on UTR.

    Then the real shift begins. UTR would suggest that kids ranked between 150 & 250 (or 300) would have a UTR of 11.5-12.5. Per UTR, these 17 & 18 y/o American Seniors in HS are good enough (TODAY) to play line 3-6 at some mid majors & most low level D1s (Today...as HS Seniors). Instead, we see Internationals with UTRs under 11.5 snagging these spots. Same thing with the mid to high level D2s.

    The very knowledgable GaTennisMom & myself (& a couple of other posters) have traveled this road the past 2 years and are intimately familiar with the options, the offers and the obstacles. & given these options, offers and obstacles, D3 becomes a VERY attractive alternative for kids who are ranked 100-400 on TRN and ranked 11.0 and 12.5 on UTR. Yeah, they could take a 25% scholarship and go to an average school (academically and tennis wise) & play line 3-6 on a team that is 80% 20-24 y/o Internationals.....but why would they ??

    The combination of Title 9 (half scholarships or smaller), Foriegn born Coaches, Coaches who are plugged in (on the take?) with Foriegn Companies, & a lack of Bonding with teamates on College visits has many 11.5-12.5 kids (kids who would easily play line 4-6 on many D1 teams) opting for D3. Another factor (not often mentioned) is that many of these kids are also strong academically, and they WANT to be "Student/Athletes" as opposed to just athletes. Tennis is unique in that Ivy League has some of the strongest teams in D1. Same thing happens in D3. Look at the talent at Chicago, Johns Hopkins, Emory & MIT. 2-3 kids on EACH of these teams could have played Elite D1 (& for sure could have played a high line at a Mid Major) but chose a different path.
     
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  5. Nacho

    Nacho Professional

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    Sorry to have offended you in some way, trying to keep my answers as short as possible and not overwhelm the discussion with too much since many have short attention span.

    Whats funny is you and I are saying the same thing, in most cases, so I don't disagree or see where you are concerned with my sentiment other then feeling like I might be wrong in stateing American Jr's system needs improvement. Totally on the same page with your last statement. UTR is just a small piece, but its what many coaches look at and their sentiment is that they have to recruit foreign players to be competitive in their conferences.

    How I see it:

    If you are a five star or Blue chip, your playing D-1 unless you don't want to or the school of choice can't offer you the opportunity. This encompasses the seniors, typically 100 kids year in and year out.

    For Four star, its hit or miss if you will ever see a college team....This is mostly the 100-200 kids

    The rest may get an opportunity here or there at a mid major that doesn't have scholarships...and so, thats all they can do

    The problem is the amount. A school like University of Louisiana Monroe in the Sun Belt recruits all foreign players. From countries like Slovakia and Romania who have far less populations then the states ULM can recruit from. Their true recruiting base is Louisiana, Texas, and Mississippi. So why are they recruiting foreign players? Whats the difference? Because they have to compete at a high level to win, and there aren't enough blue chip, five star or four star players in those areas to fill their needs as well as the needs of Ole Miss, LSU, Arkansas, Miss State, Tulane, Texas, Texas A&M, and on and on....Maybe Jr's just don't have ULM on the top of their list, but between all those schools its a thin recruiting pool year after year unless they want one star players. But one stars are not going to be competitive in the Sun Belt.

    Thats just an example. Again, its an opinion, but its based on going through the experience myself as a former D-1 collegiate player, as well as having a knowledge of the talent base and continued involvement in tennis with players and coaches. Again, there are other factors such as foreign coaches, contracts with business that cater to importing players, pipelines into certain countries, those a minor issues to me relative to the pool of players available. I don't think every player they get is a high UTR, but its the excuse many of them (Coaches) use.

    I think people focus too much on the foreign players issue, and not enough on improving our Junior tennis opportunities. I don't think the current system is adequate to put American Jr's ahead of their foreign competitors. But the focus is too much on the wrong things like changing scoring and diluting the talent. Too many parents, as you agree with, pull their kids out because of the lack of opportunities, especially in Mens tennis. The few there are go to 67% foreign players, according to the last numbers Bobby Knight published.

    Not sure why you want to nit pick the UTR comments. I will admit I am not a full blown expert on how it fully works if that is what you want to call out, but I know enough and enough coaches to understand why they are going the foreign route and the part UTR plays. Certainly there are people on these forums who really know their stuff when it comes to UTR. And the Ivy League reference just applies to a small group of schools in the league, and then a small group of other elite schools. They don't offer scholarships, its a whole different discussion.

    But, again I don't care about UTR, I care about making tennis more accessible for Jr players so that they can compete in college and its not so dominated with foreign players. I have nothing against foreign players, they have always been around. But I hate when a good players leaves the sport at age 15 to play Volleyball because the parents find it easier to pay for, its better supported by the High School, and they don't have to travel all over a 5 state area just to get good competition. American Tennis loses...Since you have lived this recently, I am sure you have a similar sentiment and saw many players who could have been good go other routes. In Romania apparently this doesn't happen and they pick up American Scholarships at Public Universities....
     
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  6. ccs

    ccs New User

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    Half of the womens teams left do have one or two americans on them, at least they seem to be trying. The other half play all international players. It just seems odd that an NCAA finals tournament will not have English as the first language there.
     
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  7. jcgatennismom

    jcgatennismom Semi-Pro

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    I agree with much you say but will comment on particular points. The UTR levels keep rising-need to be almost a 12 to play at a midlevel midmajor. The lower Power schools are looking for 12.5+ but most wont play anyone under 13+; the top 30 are bringing in 14+ freshmen.

    The UTRs of players >150 are under 12. Most of the 12.5s are in top 75/100. There is a very narrow range of players capable of playing power 5-probably top 50. 4 stars commit to Power schools but most wont play; some of them have UTRs 1.0 below the lowest starter. US players not in top 30-40 only get 5-20%

    Private D2s accept 2 and 3 stars. Even some of the public D2s are more open to US players recently-know two 2 stars who will play for D2s next year, and one from class of 2016 , a 2 star US player who played some dubs and once at line 6 on a team that made it to D2 NCAA playoffs. I think college budgets are being reduced, so some D2 college coaches are taking another look at in state 2 and 3 stars. This is a big change from several years ago when some of those same schools would not even respond to an Email from a 4 star.

    From TRN 50 to 100, many players opt for D3. With merit or need based aid, they get a top education at a selective school brought down in price from $55-$60k to $30K or less. The flagship Power schools still cost $35K-$50K out of state with a much high ratio of students to professors,and with a small amount of athletic aid; they cost the same or more than the elite D3 which require less practice time. A 5 star friend chose a top D3 because he heard practice was 2 hours a day, and players could make the grades and choose the major they need for law or medical school. However, there are players just happy to be on roster of flagship-they will get to play in fall invites. If they are smart, maybe they get $10-15K in merit.

    Midmajors are a good choice for 4 and 5 stars; with merit and athletic, players 100-200 could get 50%; players in the top 100 could get packages >75%. Now that there is SLAM tennis ratings, players can see which are the most competitive Midmajors and the schedules they play.

    The internationals under 11.5-12.5 that actually play on D1 teams may have been underranked. All USTA junior tourney matches get into UTR. In Europe, Future, jr ITFs, tennis Europe matches get in UTR, but maybe not all the in country national matches. French players who mainly play club will be under ranked as the club matches (which could be vs pros in the last rounds) are not in UTR.

    An 11.5 has all the strokes but is less consistent than a 12+, has trouble managing the momentum changes, probably only has one game strategy. At tourneys, you will see 11.5s sometimes taking 12/12.5+ to 3 sets, but they very seldom pull off the upset as the higher ranked player just adjusts his strategy; he will have more than one plan. An 11.5 player could become a successful college player with development. Unfortunately, most coaches are looking for players ready to go day one.

    Here is what hurts Americans-they have less opportunities to play very high ranked players. There are a lot of 13-15s in Europe, many playing the last rounds of club tourneys that are accessible to juniors. In a high level jr tournament, out of a draw of 64, maybe 10 will be 12.5+. ,maybe three 13+. The exception is the national 1s like Kzoo and some of the Nat 2, though the Nat 2 are watered down. ITF main draws have higher players. Instead of playing USTA, each region should pay a retainer for a few pro journeymen and have local players play tournaments where those young pros come in at the QFs and SFs. The only way a US junior can play a similar level of play to European club is to play a few rounds at a future Quali, take off school for ITFs, play the highest uSTA in the summer, or be lucky enough to attend an academy where some pros train. How can a player be prepared to play 13s and 14s in college if he didnt play many as juniors? Luckily some regions of the country-FL, CA, part of the SE have an active college/pro/jr scene, and juniors do get to hit with pros and collegians.

    Kids need to be realistic. US players will do better in college when guys outside the top 50-instead of sitting on bench- play mid major or D3 where they can develop and maybe upset a few guys on Power 5 teams.

    I agree with Nacho. Dont blame the internationals. Learn from them. Copy them. Come up with new models of training and tournaments. Aren't you glad someone did not put a quota on cars way back in the early 1900s because the horse couldnt keep up? UTR may be the answer. Try to set up pilot UTR based staggered tournaments in your region for jrs, pros, and collegians with some prize $. Look at UTR events-there is one event like that being hosted in Maryland this summer.
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2017
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  8. OneTennisParent

    OneTennisParent New User

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  9. Tenniswish

    Tenniswish New User

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    While I agree that many of the TRN #150-350 could play lines 3-6 at a mid-major as you mentioned above, the problem is that they don't want to. If you are going to be looking for a job in the U.S. after college, then the reputation of the school from which you will graduate plays a huge role in your future. That is not as true for international tennis players who can go home and simply say that they graduated from an American university...if it isn't Harvard, Yale and maybe a couple of handfuls of other schools that are known throughout the world, which school it is doesn't matter. ULM or LSU is not going to make a difference in getting a job in Bulgaria, but it probably does make a difference in applying for a job in New Orleans where there are thousands of proud LSU alums and fans. That makes the academically respected DIII schools highly appealing especially to tennis families who are often better off and higher educated.

    IF YOU ARE COACHING AT A STATE SCHOOL THAT IS NOT THE MAIN STATE SCHOOL IN YOUR STATE, it isn't that you won't offer scholarships to players from your state or from adjoining states, it's that you can't get those players to even visit your school most of the time.
    Then if you are the main state school and probably in a Power Five conference, you may not be able to get the top 25 players in the country to visit your school because you aren't one of the 10 top tennis schools in the country so then you end up looking internationally as well in order to compete because players 50-100 are going to get destroyed if they have to play the top of the line-up in the ACC, SEC, PAC-12, Big 12 or Big 10.

    The colleges and universities in the country are experiencing the exact same thing in the fight for the top academic students...lesser schools will offer more academic scholarship, but families that can manage the costs are still going to pick the top 25 ranked national university over the regional university. There is a reason why the top universities in the academic rankings don't change much each year.

    When you start accounting for the expense of becoming a quality tennis player, then the families are going to want a university name that they are proud to put on the back window of the family car, and consequently, players that could have a top 4 impact at schools are often more interested in having a top 8 spot on a bigger name or will look DIII as you said above.
     
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  10. tennisBIEST

    tennisBIEST Semi-Pro

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  11. Nacho

    Nacho Professional

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    Agree, when academics comes into the forefront then it becomes about the school. A school with a bigger academic reputation will certainly win out. However, there are schools that are in less fertile recruiting grounds that are good schools, but recruit all internationals. Its the nature of some coaches.....However, I think you would be surprised at the savvy of getting a US degree. For many foreign players it pays for college, gives them the chance to improve tennis, learn English, and is a system they don't have in their home countries. And They all go back and get 2-3 masters degrees on top of the Bachelors they may earn...I have a lot of respect for International students and what they accomplish, I wish though they would give back more...They just disappear, which is the real crime.

    I remember way back when less internationals were prevalent in womens, the quality of womens college tennis was terrible except in the power 5 conferences. It was filled with 1 star and 0 star players, there were two girls on our d-1 team (a mid major) that were basically beginners! In order for these schools to stay competitive they had to go the international route...And with more and more AD's trying to make a name for themselves with well rounded Olympic programs, they are supporting this I don't blame them. Its also happening in other Olympic non-revenue sports, not to the degree of tennis but its happening....

    The thing that amazes me is that a state of 11 million like Alabama, can only come up with 1 blue chip, 2 5 stars and a small handful of of 2-3-4 stars....So a total of 5-6 girls that even touch college tennis on a yearly basis and usually at non d-1 programs. While countries of 1.5 million are filling 10 roster spots around different d-1 schools...Just doesn't make any sense except to say they have more opportunities to play at a high level. I don't think its the coaching, I don't think its the parents, its the opportunity to play good competition and the expense American Jr's have. And then a lack of gold at the end of the rainbow. Parents are smart, they get their kids into things that might give them scholarships....And if its academics so be it...If you don't like Foreigners in College tennis, Our Jr. Tennis playing opportunities need to improve and be more convenient...Thats all I am saying.
     
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  12. Nacho

    Nacho Professional

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    I should also add that Tennis on Campus, while something some kids like, works against American players. This is promoted by the USTA as an "out" from competing on a team and has good intentions, but many American kids choose this to go to the school they want. And some of these teams are better, sadly, then the International filled teams at the same school. Goes to show we are not measuring these players well, however it is happening...And, the real tragedy is that for some schools TOC gets more fans then the varsity programs because the students associate more with those players. They don't have to go through the NCAA rigamarole, they can have a social life and study, and they're still playing tennis.

    I don't think there should be events like this competing with the Varsity team....I believe the USTA should have an 18+ age group that is for these players if they want to still compete after High School in tournaments, and encourage players to continue to be involved still. Many players have no idea what to do after cole so they just quit after Jr levels end and thus there is no participation in any tournaments, which is a whole other subject discussed on here....
     
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  13. OC-80

    OC-80 New User

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    I have no problem with foreign players playing college tennis. My issue is that I wonder if it is a level playing field for American players and foreign players. I was told by a D1 coach that the NCAA has different rules for when the "NCAA clock" starts ticking for Americans vs foreigners. By that I mean when the start of a player's 4 years of eligibility starts. He told me that for Americans the clock starts 6 months after high school graduation but for foreigners this window is prolonged far beyond that. He said that it is not unusual to have a 21-22 year old foreign freshman. Does anyone know if this is true?
     
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  14. PJ Lynn

    PJ Lynn New User

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    A coach who chooses to take an international over an American IF THEY ARE COMPLETELY EQUAL IN EVERY WAY is an outlier. The vast majority of coaches at D-1 schools, from Power 5 to low major, would rather take the American who is a 13.75 UTR over the Colombian or Russian or German who is 13.75, assuming that their skill, fitness, attitude, work-ethic, coachability, prospects for academic success, etc. are the same. There are so many more logistical considerations to getting an international kid accepted, signed, and on to campus it's ridiculous. Any coach who chooses an international over an American head-to-head clearly thinks the international is better in some way(s), and therefore, worth the effort. Either that or they're a glutton for punishment. If you've ever waited for a TOEFL score to be posted the night before signing day, for a transcript in Georgian (the country, not the state) to be translated before the admissions office goes home for Christmas break, or for an I-20 to get halfway around the world in 24 hours so the kid can get it taken to the embassy to get it approved before a week-long international holiday so they can make their non-refundable flight to the States, you would know the reasons why international recruiting isn't always the easy play.
     
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  15. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    This was brought up before, and one reason that was mentioned (don't know how frequent or important it is) was that many countries require military service after high school.
     
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  16. OC-80

    OC-80 New User

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    Yes but my point s that it is much easier for a foreign player to get to 13.75 if they have the opportunity to play ITFs for 2 or 3 years after their equivalent of high school vs the American kid that has to go right to college following high school.
     
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  17. Clemson_tennis

    Clemson_tennis Legend

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    I was intent to avoid this thread but c'mon let's get basic facts right. Alabama has a population of 4.8 million. Nowhere close to 11.
     
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  18. Clemson_tennis

    Clemson_tennis Legend

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    I have to severely disagree with every part of this post. I assume you mean that some of the big schools club teams are better than small school teams? No school has a club team better than their varsity team. I see that Michigan won the title in the USTA tennis on campus national championships, could they compete with some lower D1 schools and D2 schools? Maybe. But could they compete with the Michigan variety team? Of course not, nowhere close. And no way any of them get more fas than a varsity team, a handful of friends maybe.

    I played club tennis at Clemson for 4 years. I basically never missed a practice and it was one of the top experiences of my entire college career. Personally I wasn't that good in high school but I improved dramatically on the club team and became one of the top players on the Clemson club team. The rest of the club was filled with kids who maybe played a lot of tennis while growing up, lots of junior events but became somewhat burned out and they were just looking to play tennis for fun at a still fairly competitive level. They were not interested in playing tennis full time in college even though their level may have been up to D2 quality, but they still wanted to play tennis as much as they could for recreation. So why force players like that to go play at a D2 school they don't want to attend and be unhappy? Leave those scholarships spots open to players who want to pursue them (which happens to be a lot of the time international players. Their drive to come to the USA and be a player is stronger than many Americans.) And the Americans who really really want to play college level tennis, no matter the division, will pursue that course as well. but the tennis on campus option is great for those who do not wish to.

    Plus from my experience the club team often supports the varsity team, goes to the matches and becomes fans of the team; in no way is there a competition between the two because obviously the varsity team plays at a exceptionally higher level. (yes a few of the very top club guys at Clemson thought they could hang with Yannick Maden who was #1 at Clemson at the time. I made sure they realized just how silly that claim was and employed them to come to a varsity match. And once they id they soon realized that all 6 singles players for both teams out on the court would plaster them)

    The club was great for making friends for me as well as many others. We had a club of like 15-30 players that would come out to play on their own schedules (there was nobody forcing them to come to practice). And btw the club was filled with many foreign exchange students as well, because tennis is an international sport after all. Clemson has a lot of Indian students who come for engineering and we also had 5-8 Indian guys come out and play with us and make friends. Also a couple former D2 players at nearby Anderson University from Germany who were graduate students at Clemson. It was a great mix of guys and girls and great for the sport of tennis on campus. In no way did it detract from the varsity teams and I find it highly unlikely that that is the case at many schools around the country.
     
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  19. SECFAN

    SECFAN Rookie

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    I believe the same rule applies to internationals. They have to enroll within six months after graduating high school.
     
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  20. Nacho

    Nacho Professional

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    Yup, not afraid to say when I have mis-spoke, good call out. I was looking up Ohio as well and mixed the two when I was writing.
     
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  21. Nacho

    Nacho Professional

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    Your taking the post personally and literally, I am in no way disparaging the experience people like yourself have with club tennis. And I am in no way calling for its demise. Just saying it has become the option for many American Jr. Players instead of striving to play in college. I talk to kids all the time, and its an easy thing to shoot for since they know they won't get a scholarship. Its recreation tennis....just as you'd described. And sure the TOC teams in power 5 conferences form clubs and support the Varsity teams, happens at OSU. But with much little effort they all get their friends out to their matches, with much less effort then some Varsity teams. Some of them are well supported by the schools, its interesting.

    And, not saying any TOC team would beat a Power 5 team (except Nebraska or Michigan State), thats ridiculous and not what I am suggesting at all. But you say the TOC team at Michigan couldn't compete with a team in the Big South conference? Its D-1, maybe a mid major, but there are good schools in there that just fill their rosters with foreign players.

    I looked up University of Michigan by the way, who just won the TOC. 2-3 stars on their TOC team, according to tennis recruiting.net. For sure they are a good team. Its a shame some of them couldn't play somewhere. Could be they choose Academics over playing, I get that. True for any sport. But its endemic of the Jr talent that could be out there, that instead goes foreign. Some of these guys weren't even talked to about playing, so those choose academics because that was their only choice.

    @Clemson_tennis I have a great deal of respect for you, your knowledge of the game and players, and your comments in general. Certainly I am not trying to offend people or put out fake facts out there to be nit-picked, or try to battle with you over these things. Just presenting some different things to think about, and I will admit maybe some of them are not mainstream and in lock step with support groups like the USTA, but every decision and idea has a consequence. In the end I like foreign players, I like tennis and I Like College tennis. I played it, still play it, and live and support it. Ultimately, I would like to see people stop focusing just on the foreign players concern, and improve the American Jr system so a few additional Americans can compete on the college and maybe pro level, thats all. And, to force people think about the situation globally, rather then having things shove things down our throats that change the game forever. I think you an I are on similar pages with respect to that, but its ok if not.
     
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  22. Nacho

    Nacho Professional

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  23. PJ Lynn

    PJ Lynn New User

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    Yeah but the problem with your point is that it isn't true.

    First of all, it's not any easier for anyone to get to a 13.75 than it is for anyone else, at least not based on how old they are or where they live. To get to (and retain) a 13.75 and 100% reliability you have to win multiple matches against people who are rated that high, or higher. The way UTR works isn't like USTA or ITF junior point chasing where you can just grab more matches and build a ranking with quantity over quality. If you don't beat people who are 13.75 or better, you won't be 13.75 either. The only people who it is easier for to get to 13.75 are people who are better and win more matches, regardless of age, nationality, etc.

    Second, find me a CURRENT D-I college player who played ITFs for 2 or 3 years after high school and suffered no eligibility penalties. Barring an extreme outlier who got waivers granted, you won't find one, because all of the loopholes that used to allow for this have been closed.
     
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  24. jcgatennismom

    jcgatennismom Semi-Pro

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    The point OC-80 was making is that it may be easier to find local or regional opportunities to play 13.75s in Europe than it is in the United States. A US junior could be rated 12.5 because he has only played and defeated players rated 12.5 or below. The only times that a US junior will have the chance to play a 13.5+ and have it count towards UTR is if player plays a Future MD or Quali, player plays Kzoo or possibly some of the other Nat 1s, or a player plays high level ITFs or possibly the last rounds of a grade 4 ITF. There may be 13.5 rated juniors in a section, but they will only be playing the sectional championship, and maybe not even that. There are more Futures and more junior ITFs in Europe so a junior player has more opportunities to play higher rated players. Because distances between major cities and countries are closer, it is also cheaper to play there. Even tournaments that dont currently count for UTR like the French club tournaments provide juniors a chance to play vs pros in the later rounds. While a US junior who loses in a pro circuit Quali has to wait a week and travel to another US city to try again, the French club tournaments overlap and are centrally located so a player who loses in one on Tuesday might be able to enter in the middle of another tournament less than an hour away on Thursday since entries are staggered. Sometimes players even end up playing different rounds of two different tournaments in one day.

    We agree with you that players have to win or have a close match to raise their UTR. What we are saying is that you cant beat someone you dont even get a chance to play. Is that junior 12. 5 really a 12.5 or is he possibly a 13.5 who just has not had a chance to play other 13.5s? There are some players who are called late bloomers. Maybe they were late bloomers or maybe the level was there all the time but the player did not get to showcase it until he had the opportunity to play higher players. Chris Eubanks, top 10 player, ACC player of the year, was ranked #165 in Nov of his junior year- a 4 star,but not a top 4 star . He was ranked #14 blue chip by spring of his senior year. Did his skills skyrocket in 18 months or was part of the ratings jump due to him playing and winning at national tournaments he had not played before; if he had played them earlier, he might have been a 5 star as a junior. Ratings are accurate between players assuming players have equal opportunities to play.

    Another example I can think of is Alexander Kovacevic of Illinois. He was ranked #79-not quite a 5 star in late Dec of his senior year. He had an incredible 2nd semester of his senior year, beat a lot of blue chips that spring, won 9 matches at Kzoo with his only losses vs top 10 blue chips and ended up ranked in the top 25 for his class by the summer after his senior year. A #79 is around a 12,5UTR. Kovacevic is 14+ UTR now, plays line 3 for Illinois, one of the top US freshmen, but the Power coaches probably were not strongly recruiting him until spring of his senior year.

    Even if a foreign player only has a 6 months or 9 months advantage on a US player or even if the player is the same age as the US player but has a year more experience playing pro level adults, the player may seem much more talented than US recruits. However, some US 4 or 5 stars can make a big jump when they have the chance to challenge themselves vs top competition. Unfortunately many coaches may only be looking for top 40 players or players already with UTR 13+. I can think of several Florida juniors who have raised their levels significantly because they had the chance to play Futures in their state but certainly many US juniors cant travel to Florida or CA for winter Futures due to school or finances.

    If a college coach is looking for a player ready to go day one, he is probably going to choose an international player or a US blue chip (only 25 of them and some go pro) Coaches are recruiting earlier, and 40% of 2018 blue chips have already committed. Yet there will be US guys who may not peak until late in their senior year or later. International players may be recruited in the summer for January start so they have more time and the whole fall to compete and improve.
     
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    #24
  25. tennisBIEST

    tennisBIEST Semi-Pro

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    #25
  26. heninfan99

    heninfan99 G.O.A.T.

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    In state schools it is a problem, not in private.
     
    #26
  27. ClarkC

    ClarkC Hall of Fame

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    True, but people will be posting nonsense about 22-year-old foreign freshmen until the end of time. Nothing will change it.

    EDIT: I see that Hugo DiFeo was listed as a freshman by Ohio State in 2014-2015 when he had to sit out the year. But now he is a senior in 2016-2017, so he was not really a freshman back then. I have pointed out (numerous times) that colleges tend to list newcomers as freshmen on their roster pages, regardless of years of eligibility. Then people rant about the 20- or 21-year-old freshman, and never notice a couple of years later that he is gone. We have been through this conversation many times and will do so many more times, no doubt.
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2017
    #27
  28. OC-80

    OC-80 New User

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    Ages of roster of GGU:
    23, 26, 21, 25, 19, 22, 25, 20, 21, 21

    I do not believe anyone on the U VA roster is over the age of 22.
     
    #28
  29. tennisjunky

    tennisjunky New User

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    Age 25 and 26.......?
    I think this speaks for itself.
     
    #29
  30. tennisjunky

    tennisjunky New User

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    I have to totally disagree with you on this point.

    As a parent, this is something I see on a regular basis. Kids soldiering on, just doesn't count.
    Parents (you know, the ones flipping the bills) are not keen on spending money down a hole (especially money needed for their own retirement). Only the parents that just don't know how rigged the system is.... keep soldiering on, only to find out later that they wasted a ton of money.

    Tennis training/development has almost become (and will continue to be) an industry. I've had numerous coaches and camps all trying to make money off "getting little Johnny" to the best he can be. I say... for what?!?!? The experience? Scholarship? Work ethic? Competition? The sad truth is that the kid can get these in most all sports. And better scholarship opportunities elsewhere, too. It pains me to say this but tennis while unique, isn't that special (unless your turning pro). And parents know this, especially non tennis playing parents. Its all about MONEY MONEY MONEY!

    TENNIS IS EXPENSIVE!
    This is especially true if you don't live in a Florida or S. Cal., all other areas have to spend even MORE money.
    This is why the USTA will never fully develop USA tennis, because until they figure out how to develop juniors on a regional basis, it will never truly flourish outside the major areas. Yes there are many people playing outside these areas, expenses just increased 5x in an already expensive sport. As a side note, USTA should already know this before they sunk all their money in Lake Nona.

    Parents will eventually figure this out, some sooner than later...... the sooner the better.

    And the formula parents use is simple.

    1. Pay for 10+ years of junior development in the HOPES of a full ride, minimum of $80,000 (realistically about $150,000). Possibility maybe 25% chance for full ride for girl and 5% for boy.
    VERSUS
    2. Just pay for the degree outright with the same money..... Degree 100% Guaranteed
    OR a Third Option
    3. Pull kid out of tennis in favor of another sport such as: swimming, baseball/softball, golf, soccer, field hockey. This is the middle option that most parents I talk with (including myself) will choice. You get all the benefits of athletics with substantially reduced training cost and a higher possibility for scholarship opportunities.

    Sad to say, but I'm starting to think tennis shouldn't even be a part of the university program.
     
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    #30
  31. Ihatetennis

    Ihatetennis Hall of Fame

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    Junior tennis training however can provide a lifelong skill. Teaching pros can make a comfortable salary as a transition job.

    I got a coaching job this summer for beginners while my friends struggle to find jobs.

    Tennis is good for networking, lots of contacts to be found in the tennis world.

    Tennis is a lifelong sport and an investment in your childs future. While it may not return the 80k you spent or the thousands of miles driven, it will give them a competitive attitude and a way of learning not to give up.

    Many schools also take athletics in consideration when accepting applicants. D3 schools that are nearly impossible to get in with great grades and sats suddenly become easily accessible thanks to being good enough to have the coach want you on their team.

    a 3 star player with coaching support can go to many schools like Carleton, Haverford, Colorado College. Since these schools would more than likely deny another brainiac with the same scores as every regular student that applies.

    Same goes for other sports, but I think that serious athletics should be a part of children and teens lives because they give you tools to succeed that you cant learn many other places.
     
    #31
  32. ccs

    ccs New User

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    Maybe things are getting a little better. This years in womens division 2 tennis the final 16 teams had 84 international to 20 Americans. To win you need to be all foreign, there was only one American there to the 26 foreign players in the final four teams.
     
    #32
  33. atatu

    atatu Hall of Fame

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    Check out the UCLA roster: http://uclabruins.com/roster.aspx?path=mten

    Not only are they all from the US, they are all from California, and they are seeded #2, doesn't that disprove the argument that you can't win with American players - a team made up entirely of players from one state ?

    Edit: they do have a player from Florida, my mistake.
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2018
    #33
  34. andfor

    andfor Legend

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    I agree with that, always have. However, it proves another point that only a handful of schools get the majority of US talent needed to win a Nati.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
    #34
  35. atatu

    atatu Hall of Fame

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    Honestly, I feel like it can be done, but it takes a real effort that most coaches don't want to make. I recall that the 2003 Illinois team was almost entirely American (Delic moved to the US as a teenager, I believe) and Craig Tiley made a point of it.
     
    #35
  36. ClarkC

    ClarkC Hall of Fame

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    Sure, the Mississippi State coach didn't need to sign those foreign players to have an SEC champion team. He just needed to put out some effort and he could have had all those Southern California boys come to Starkville instead of UCLA. He's just lazy.
     
    #36
  37. atatu

    atatu Hall of Fame

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    Yeah, Urbana-Champaign is a real garden spot, awesome weather, beaches, hot chicks, no wonder Tiley got all those guys to go to school there...
     
    #37
  38. atatu

    atatu Hall of Fame

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    Also, didn't Boland do ok recruiting a mostly USA based roster ?
     
    #38
  39. ClarkC

    ClarkC Hall of Fame

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    So, his successor is not willing to put out the effort?
     
    #39
  40. Clemson_tennis

    Clemson_tennis Legend

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    It's always funny to me when people suggest that recruiting international players is somehow the "easy" way.
     
    #40
  41. atatu

    atatu Hall of Fame

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    Well, I have nothing against foreign players and I don't fault coaches for recruiting them, but I would stand by the statement that it's harder to put together a national level team recruiting all or primarily American players. The 2003 Illinois team is an example that it can be done, and UCLA can do it using players from just one state ? So yeah, it's easier to put together a top level team when you bring in foreign talent, I don't think that is an incorrect statement at all.
     
    #41
  42. atatu

    atatu Hall of Fame

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    I have no idea, maybe it's not important to him ? Tiley made a point of doing it because he wanted to show that it could be done. But your implication that the location of a school completely disqualifies top American players from attending seems a bit generalized.

    Speaking of Mississippi, salute to Devin Britton, wherever he is these days !

    http://www.olemisssports.com/sports/m-tennis/spec-rel/052509aaa.html
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2018
    #42
  43. roxieap12

    roxieap12 Rookie

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    #43
  44. Nacho

    Nacho Professional

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    Can't resist putting my two cents in once again

    It can be done, would be great if it happened. But the reality is that you need to be a 5 star or better to be playing high level d-1 tennis, and there just aren't enough American Jr players to add to rosters. The good ones get gobbled up by the top schools, and other jump into the pros. Main issue is the talent isn't there, and coaches don't want to lose their jobs. Talent level is only going to get worse as players set their sights on a lower standard of USTA play, and other sports that have mediocre talent and lots of interest, e.g. Lacrosse. These other sports are now becoming more appealing for parents and school administrators. Sure a there are kids that want to play for their state school whether it is Miss State or ULM, reality is those kids are 2 star and 3 star, and to play in the SEC you just aren't going to make it. Only 4.5 scholarships in mens tennis, so the opportunity to even get a scholarship in tennis is non-existent. Why even bother playing as a JR.

    NCAA/ITA have regulated the amount of time coaches can spend with players in a week, so "training" or coaching a player to improve is not an option, they need to be at a high level out of HS. Coaching for technique is almost out the door and there is no time to improve potential

    Not necessarily easier for coaches to get International players, but less risky then putting your reputation and recruiting efforts out there for a local player and the baggage associated with it. You mess up an International player, it doesn't get noticed

    Illinois has to search in tennis rich areas for players, they only have one player from Illinois on their roster. For schools like Illinois and even Ohio State, consider that every D-1 program surrounding them has virtually dropped their program in the last 20 years, so they are the only schools recruiting any high level talent in the area. They have no competition. OSU in the 90's had to compete with Ohio U, Cincinnati, Miami, Bowling Green, West Virginia and Pitt, all of those programs are gone. Between those schools mentioned, that is 27 scholarships gone, further eliminating opportunities for kids.
     
    Last edited: May 22, 2018
    #44
  45. tennisforlife77

    tennisforlife77 Rookie

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    On a related topic I suspect that with the changes to the ITF pro circuit we are going to be hit with a wall of foreign players. US college tennis is going to look like a very attractive option to the hundreds of foreign tennis players who will now be locked out of pro circuit play. US colleges with big budgets are going to host the new transition events so they can hand out WC's to their players making it extra attractive for a player looking to keep his pro options open. Even less scholarships for US players.
     
    #45
  46. jcgatennismom

    jcgatennismom Semi-Pro

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    Will be interesting to see how it plays out. Because the transition tour reserves 5 spots for players in jr world ITF top 100 I think, some players in the top 100 who were considering college might go straight to tour. For those international juniors outside world top 100, certainly US college will be more attractive esp in 2020 when I think only the SFs and beyond earn ATP points in the $25K. In 2019, I think all $25K points still count.

    Not only will transition tour changes probably bring in more international players to college, the reduction in the draws from 64/128 to 24 will severely reduce opportunities for US college players to get great matchplay during the summer. In Europe, international college players have a strong club circuit in the summer to keep up their skills. Considering last year at the ITA summer circuit championship at TCU, only 9 players had UTRs over 13 and only 1 over 14 (that is the current UTR of players-not their UTR in 8/17), the top ITA summer circuit tourney was nowhere near as strong as even a Future Quali. I analyzed one $15k Quali from the spring that had 7 players with UTRs over 14 and 11 over 13.5 and that was during dual season so those were mainly graduated players and young pros. What tourneys are US college players in the range UTR 13-13.5 supposed to play starting in 2019 to grow or just keep up their skills so they wont lose ground against their European opponents once Future Quali draws are cut? There are just a handful of top prize $ summer tourneys that will attract high UTR players.
     
    #46
  47. CincyIllinifan

    CincyIllinifan New User

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    Not exactly sure what you mean. Dancer is a pretty good coach/recruiter for the Illini, but he’s no Craig Tilley (those were the days). Dancer does seem to concentrate more in recruiting domestic players - there are only 2 foreign players on the Illini roster, and only 1 in the top 6.

    Though there have been a few foreign Illini players, they are age appropriate. Vukic, from Australia, is a senior, and just turned 22.
     
    #47
  48. ClarkC

    ClarkC Hall of Fame

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    My question was sarcastic, in response to a statement from another poster.
     
    #48
  49. robow7

    robow7 Professional

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    Typically, how many full or partial rides can a coach hand out at Div. 1, Div. 2, and so on ? Just curious how some of these international kids can afford the schools if not given a full or mostly full ride.
     
    #49
  50. JW10S

    JW10S Hall of Fame

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    Oh please...how do you know the Mississippi State coach didn't try to recruit the players who ended up at UCLA, why do you just assume 'he's just lazy' for bringing in foreign players? Name one thing Mississippi State has to offer that is better than what UCLA has to offer...just one. Why does Baylor, for example, have mostly foreign players? If you've ever been to Waco Texas you'd know why, top US players would rather go anywhere, somewhere like UCLA, instead. Coaches are hired and paid to produce results. A coach who brings in foreign players to make their team better is doing their job. When you are a coach losing is not something that leads to job security.

    I've said it before and I will continue to say that foreign players have made US college tennis better. There are not enough top US players to make up anywhere near 32 top level teams let alone 64. The 64 team Nationals would be an absolute joke, a folly, without foreign players. Without foreign players college tennis would be less competitive, less interesting. and less relevant. The purists can whine all they want but they're blowing in the wind.
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2018
    Southerncharm, JLyon and roxieap12 like this.
    #50

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