Has any pro made it from D-3 or D-2 college tennis?

xFullCourtTenniSx

Hall of Fame
Has any pro made it from D-3 or D-2 college tennis? We don't hear much about the background of pros that went to college first.
Anybody who made it as a successful pro out of college went to a top D1 school and dominated the D1 tournaments. Blake was #1 out of Harvard and CRUSHING D1 tennis, and the few Americans we have now were also top D1 college players for I believe USC and Stanford. Going ATP pro out of D3 is a miracle. Top D2 I can imagine maybe breaking top 1000 if they were the VERY top of D2 and their game kept improving. But they can't making a living out of it. Then again, maybe some top D2 players denied going to a D1 college for certain reasons even though they had the capability to play D1. But competition at the top of D1 and the top of D2 is pretty different. Unless you're regularly going to Futures events when you have time or are CRUSHING D2, you don't have very good prospects on the pro tour.
 

jhick

Professional
Yeah there are probably a few D3 and D2 players that have played around on the futures and challenger circuits, but the only D3 player that I know of that has made it big is Butorac in doubles. I think he peaked in the rankings around #15 (meaning top 10 as a team with either or maybe both Rojer and Klaasen). He and Klaasen lost in the Aussie Open final one year. Butorac just retired this year.
 

Nacho

Professional
Has any pro made it from D-3 or D-2 college tennis? We don't hear much about the background of pros that went to college first.
Depends how deep in the rankings you want to get. Most college players are ranked or obtain a few ATP points to qualify for a ranking, but very few crack the top hundred in singles or doubles. As a few have mentioned Butorac is the most notable from anything outside of a D-1 and that was in doubles, and there are no women players from D-2/3 in the top tour rankings. Sadly many college players even in D-1 are not in the top hundred anymore. In the 70's and 80's the top hundred were made up of over 50% ex/college players, it is less then 10% today. So the lack of players is more a reflection on the lack of college players in general in the top rankings....
 

Booger

Hall of Fame
Matt Seeberger is the best DIII player of all time. 3x national champ. Fun fact: he plays with one of those huge big bubba frames.

His career high singles ranking is 1200, but he was ranked as high as 155 in doubles.
 
Yeah there are probably a few D3 and D2 players that have played around on the futures and challenger circuits, but the only D3 player that I know of that has made it big is Butorac in doubles. I think he peaked in the rankings around #15 (meaning top 10 as a team with either or maybe both Rojer and Klaasen). He and Klaasen lost in the Aussie Open final one year. Butorac just retired this year.
This is correct regarding Butorac. The year he went to the finals of the Aussie Open (2014) he and Klaasen finished 9 as a team at the end of the year and just missed the World Tour Finals. He played at D3 Gustavus but actually started at a D1 school (Ball State). He's a brilliant doubles player.
 

Nacho

Professional
Were Flach and Seguso at a smaller division school? It rings a bell.
They came from SIU-Edwardsville, which is D-I now but was D-II at the time (early 80's). And incidentally almost eliminated their tennis program this last year
 

jhick

Professional
This is correct regarding Butorac. The year he went to the finals of the Aussie Open (2014) he and Klaasen finished 9 as a team at the end of the year and just missed the World Tour Finals. He played at D3 Gustavus but actually started at a D1 school (Ball State). He's a brilliant doubles player.
Yeah I moved to his hometown some years ago. I belong to a tennis club his dad owns and play with Tim often, who is now a 4.5 but was quite the player himself back in the day. Funny enough, I've never met Eric, yet I know the rest of his family quite well.
 

Ihatetennis

Hall of Fame
Barely anyone makes it pro from D1, so it should go without saying that no one makes it pro from D2/3
matt seeberger, eric buotorac. eric made a grand slam final in doubles like mentioned.

Plus d3 doubles is more important so the potential for doubles players to come out is pretty high if there happens to be a solid guy who works very hard.
 

JW10S

Hall of Fame
matt seeberger, eric buotorac. eric made a grand slam final in doubles like mentioned.

Plus d3 doubles is more important so the potential for doubles players to come out is pretty high if there happens to be a solid guy who works very hard.
Seeberger has a career high singles ranking of 1,200, a career high doubles ranking of 155 and a current doubles ranking of 590, no current singles ranking. His career prize money total is $29,493 so you're pushing it to say he 'made it' as a pro. Also your claim that doubles is more important in D3 is false, it is no more important than it is in D1 or D2. There are only 3 former D1 college players in the ATP top 100 singles rankings (no D2 or D3) vs 16 former D1 players in the top 100 in doubles, Boutorac is the exception as the only non-D1 player. If doubles were more important than why aren't there more D3 players in the ATP doubles rankings? Buotorac by any measure has had a good doubles career but he is an anomaly. As another poster stated, very few of the top D1 players who try the pro tour really make it as it is so these days you cannot say college tennis, at any level, is a real viable pathway to 'making it' on the pro tour, especially in singles and only marginally so in doubles.
 
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Nacho

Professional
Seeberger has a career high singles ranking of 1,200, a career high doubles ranking of 155 and a current doubles ranking of 590, no current singles ranking. His career prize money total is $29,493 so you're pushing it to say he 'made it' as a pro. Also your claim that doubles is more important in D3 is false, it is no more important than it is in D1 or D2. There are only 3 former D1 college players in the ATP top 100 singles rankings (no D2 or D3) vs 16 former D1 players in the top 100 in doubles, Boutorac is the exception as the only non-D1 player. If doubles were more important than why aren't there more D3 players in the ATP doubles rankings? Buotorac by any measure has had a good doubles career but he is an anomaly. As another poster stated, very few of the top D1 players who try the pro tour really make it as it is so these days you cannot say college tennis, at any level, is a real viable pathway to 'making it' on the pro tour, especially in singles and only marginally so in doubles.
The only thing I might disagree with is that it is "viable". Certainly making the top 100 on the tour is tough and not very viable, but beyond the top 100 is littered with just about every top 50 D-1 player over the last 10 years. You go to any challenger event and it is basically watching ex top college players. The level of play is great, but they struggle to leap past the qualifier or first rounds of any grand slam tournament. The additional problem is that unless you are in the top 100 you make no money playing tennis, and many of the top college players can't afford it anymore. Many players go to college in order to have a way to help pay for training and to play a ton of tennis, its a great option. But afterward it is almost impossible to do it on their own. D-3 has some good players and programs, but they hardly ever make it out of futures events and rarely try to go further. D-3 players don't play D-3 because they want to be pros, they play D-3 usually because they want to play in school and don't want to languish at a mid major or play on the backend of a strong program.
 

Ihatetennis

Hall of Fame
Seeberger has a career high singles ranking of 1,200, a career high doubles ranking of 155 and a current doubles ranking of 590, no current singles ranking. His career prize money total is $29,493 so you're pushing it to say he 'made it' as a pro. Also your claim that doubles is more important in D3 is false, it is no more important than it is in D1 or D2. There are only 3 former D1 college players in the ATP top 100 singles rankings (no D2 or D3) vs 16 former D1 players in the top 100 in doubles, Boutorac is the exception as the only non-D1 player. If doubles were more important than why aren't there more D3 players in the ATP doubles rankings? Buotorac by any measure has had a good doubles career but he is an anomaly. As another poster stated, very few of the top D1 players who try the pro tour really make it as it is so these days you cannot say college tennis, at any level, is a real viable pathway to 'making it' on the pro tour, especially in singles and only marginally so in doubles.
Doubles is more important in d3 so a player is more likely to develop into a better doubles player.

Seeberger made it to 155 in doubles, that's nothing to scoff at.

And the reason doubles is more important in d3 is because it counts for 3/9 points. So if you sweep doubles you start to a 3-0 lead and only need to win 2 singles matches.

I'm not saying there will be many d3 pros because obviously the talent goes to d1, but d3 has potential to put out a couple doubles players.
 
Doubles is more important in d3 so a player is more likely to develop into a better doubles player.

Seeberger made it to 155 in doubles, that's nothing to scoff at.

And the reason doubles is more important in d3 is because it counts for 3/9 points. So if you sweep doubles you start to a 3-0 lead and only need to win 2 singles matches.

I'm not saying there will be many d3 pros because obviously the talent goes to d1, but d3 has potential to put out a couple doubles players.
Ehh this is quite a stretch that you're making here. Doubles is barely more important in D3 tennis than in D1 tennis. To me, you can say that someone made it as a pro player when they can support themselves from the income they make from tennis. While Seeberger was filthy in D3 and I can't take anything away from his accomplishments there, he was nowhere close to making it as a pro. That leaves Boutorac (who to my understanding started at D1) as the only one to do anything notable from D3.

Just look at Skylar Butts. He was arguably the best player in D3 last year. Recently he played a 10k Futures event. He won one round of qualies. That's what you're looking at for D3.
 

Ihatetennis

Hall of Fame
Ehh this is quite a stretch that you're making here. Doubles is barely more important in D3 tennis than in D1 tennis. To me, you can say that someone made it as a pro player when they can support themselves from the income they make from tennis. While Seeberger was filthy in D3 and I can't take anything away from his accomplishments there, he was nowhere close to making it as a pro. That leaves Boutorac (who to my understanding started at D1) as the only one to do anything notable from D3.

Just look at Skylar Butts. He was arguably the best player in D3 last year. Recently he played a 10k Futures event. He won one round of qualies. That's what you're looking at for D3.
In d1 you have to win half of the singles flights to win a match if you win the doubles point

In d3 you have to win 1/3

In d1 doubles is shorter in format and worth less points.

How is this hard to grasp? 3-0 lead to 5 is bigger than 1-0 lead to 4
 

Nacho

Professional
Ehh this is quite a stretch that you're making here. Doubles is barely more important in D3 tennis than in D1 tennis. To me, you can say that someone made it as a pro player when they can support themselves from the income they make from tennis. While Seeberger was filthy in D3 and I can't take anything away from his accomplishments there, he was nowhere close to making it as a pro. That leaves Boutorac (who to my understanding started at D1) as the only one to do anything notable from D3.

Just look at Skylar Butts. He was arguably the best player in D3 last year. Recently he played a 10k Futures event. He won one round of qualies. That's what you're looking at for D3.
No one makes money in pro tennis unless they crack the top 100, or top 50 really. So, I think it is unfair to say only money makers are "pro's". Certainly Money makers can stick around and play longer, but most players on the tour view anyone who gets ATP points as someone who is at a pro level. If you get ATP points, and can qualify in tournaments, your a pro.
 
No one makes money in pro tennis unless they crack the top 100, or top 50 really. So, I think it is unfair to say only money makers are "pro's". Certainly Money makers can stick around and play longer, but most players on the tour view anyone who gets ATP points as someone who is at a pro level. If you get ATP points, and can qualify in tournaments, your a pro.
We are in agreement on this. I absolutely view anyone who is skilled enough to get points as a pro. I think the misunderstanding is on the phrase 'made it.' I'm interpreting this as being successful as a professional tennis player. Very very very few pro players actually make it on the tour, and that's where I'm coming from.

In d1 you have to win half of the singles flights to win a match if you win the doubles point

In d3 you have to win 1/3

In d1 doubles is shorter in format and worth less points.

How is this hard to grasp? 3-0 lead to 5 is bigger than 1-0 lead to 4
What you are saying is not hard at all to grasp and based solely off the numbers you are correct. 3/5 is bigger than 1/4. I currently play D3 tennis, and our team also schedules matches against D1 teams and we play by D1 rules. From experience, I can say that there is a very minimal difference in the importance of doubles between the formats. We don't train more or less for doubles depending on what rules our next match will be played under, and whatever marginal increase in importance doubles might have at the D3 level will do nothing to compensate for the massive skill gap between high level D1 and top tier D3.
 

goran_ace

Hall of Fame
No one makes money in pro tennis unless they crack the top 100, or top 50 really. So, I think it is unfair to say only money makers are "pro's". Certainly Money makers can stick around and play longer, but most players on the tour view anyone who gets ATP points as someone who is at a pro level. If you get ATP points, and can qualify in tournaments, your a pro.
This guy tracks current college players with at least 2 ATP points

http://www.collegetennistoday.com/2016/08/college-atp-rankings.html
 

Nacho

Professional
We are in agreement on this. I absolutely view anyone who is skilled enough to get points as a pro. I think the misunderstanding is on the phrase 'made it.' I'm interpreting this as being successful as a professional tennis player. Very very very few pro players actually make it on the tour, and that's where I'm coming from.
Gotcha, no argument there....very few make it at all...A lot of money goes to a small handful of players

This guy tracks current college players with at least 2 ATP points
Yup, know him well!
 

Johnatan

New User
Ehh this is quite a stretch that you're making here. Doubles is barely more important in D3 tennis than in D1 tennis. To me, you can say that someone made it as a pro player when they can support themselves from the income they make from tennis. While Seeberger was filthy in D3 and I can't take anything away from his accomplishments there, he was nowhere close to making it as a pro. That leaves Boutorac (who to my understanding started at D1) as the only one to do anything notable from D3.

Just look at Skylar Butts. He was arguably the best player in D3 last year. Recently he played a 10k Futures event. He won one round of qualies. That's what you're looking at for D3.
In my experience I have seen many D3 players with a level that is high enough to win Futures qualies and win couple rounds after that !
 
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