My level is about 1 UTR lower than most of the guys on the team, although there are about 2-3 guys who have the same or lower UTR than me. It is a top 20 D3 school in the nation, and they do currently have 15+ guys on the roster ( About 5 seniors), so do you think I should email the coach now and ask to walk on or should I just wait till next year? Do coaches even allow people to join halfway through the year considering the fall season already ended?
I'm late in answering this. Have you considered playing any tourneys over winter break? There are still some open registration UTR college circuits starting in a week or two. Since your college team has 15+ guys on the roster, I think you would have to prove yourself to make it worth the coach's effort to add another player to the roster. I think the better approach would be to ask what can I do this summer or what UTR do I have to reach to try out for team in the fall. Those 15 guys have put in a semester of effort. I think they could resent someone who was not a high UTR player joining the team in Jan. D1 teams are used to new Jan adds, but I assume most D3 players start in fall.
My son played D1 and this is what he observed about tryouts/walk ons on his team and others-guy who had brother on team got a try out, made team, and got to play a little. Guy who was team manager and good friends with guy at top of lineup got a roster spot after his friend hit and practiced with him over the summer. If you can, befriend the other guys on the team. In another post, you said you can't string. Is there any other service you could do for team? With 15 guys on team, that is probably covered by the benchwarmers. Considering many of the top 20 D3 schools are in cold weather states, practice is probably on indoor courts, and the coach may have a hard enough time fitting in the men's and women's teams on court for practices.
You are in your freshman year. The summer of 2023 is ideal for you to improve your tennis-men's opens, ITA summer circuit, Future Qualis, etc. You dont need to work an internship until after your soph year. My son spent the summer before his freshman and soph years playing tourneys. If you ask the coach ahead what to play during the summer and then prove your worth via results, I think you would have a good shot of making team in fall esp with 5 seniors but talk to coach now before he finishes adding all his freshmen for next year. He may already have enough freshmen for fall. However, if your UTR is better than one of his prospective freshmen and he is convinced you will put in the work this summer, he might pencil you in for a fall roster spot.
My son was friends with guys who played on UAA and NESCAC teams-most were 4 or 5 stars in juniors. One is in med school now. They had a track record in HS of managing AP courses while playing both USTA juniors and high level HS tennis and state playoffs. The guys already on the team have had a chance to prove they can manage tennis and academics via their fall academic and tennis results. You are at a disadvantage but having excellent grades this year and excellent results in the summer could convince the coach to give you a shot. It's got to be hard for a coach to manage 15 players; my son was on teams with 8-10 players and his coach was still busy.