C. AMERICAN TENNIS IN THE FUTURE (345)

  1.  College tennis is directly related to the development of elite players in America.  Without more scholarships for our youngsters,  we will continue “the dearth”.
  2. Pickleball could be an obvious first choice as the best lead-up game for our junior tennis programs.   The mass of people are unaware of our  current programs to address junior participation.  Awareness of pickleball popularity grows daily.

(www.tomparham.wordpress.com) has numerous attempts to call attention to the issues above.  Here are  are a few:

A. ( College/American tennis) https://wordpress.com/post/littlegreenbookoftennis.com/1749  (blog 193)

B. (Pickleball)

https://wordpress.com/post/littlegreenbookoftennis.com/1681 (blog 186)

 

 

N. FOREIGN TRADE OR FOREIGN AID (337)

The Raleigh News and Observer published an article by Barry Jacobs on November 30, 2018.   Mr. Jacobs made particular note of the increasing percentage of international collegiate basketball players in the United States. He also pointed out the history of this issue with other sports in the USA.

American college tennis, men and women’s, has struggled with this issue for more than fifty years. Any sport that is played internationally

( basketball, soccer, track and field, golf, and others) will have people who will want the education we offer. Often via scholarships funded by state tax revenues. The tennis tsunami is expanding.

The IntercollegiateTennis Association is the NCAA affiliate that manages college tennis in large part. Periodically they rank the teams, and singles and doubles

They rank men and women in NCAA Divisions 1,11, and 111, the NAIA, and Junior colleges. Having just read these 2018 fall rankings (google ITA TENNIS) and anyone can see the listing of the top players) my observations of these current lists reflect the long time history of college tennis:

  1. I once asked a player of mine who had just won, who he played next? Another “strom” he said. Lots of Ovas in women’s tennis now.   Lots of oriental names in women’s LPGA?   Don’t see as many Reggie Williams or Sol Epsteins. It is not the Smiths and Jones who are on the lists. And taking the scholarships.
  2. Sure, Americans are great mixture of people and names, but believe me, I have studied the lists a lot, and the rosters that reflect their nationality . Pick a school, google men’s tennis . Tag the roster and see for yourself. Just recently I researched the total rosters of Division 11’s top six mens teams. Of 63 players on the combined rosters, 62 were international. Six schools, one American. When I saw the USTA figure of some 25% of college tennis players being internationals, I cringed.   TRY 80% of top players.
  3. No scholarships for American kids, no elite players. Our great players, past and current, come from parents, high school and college tennis. Not Academies or the USTA.
  4. Is diversity our goal, or winning, or our children? Scholarships are the answer. Should our kids get the lion’s share.?
  5. Is this spreading? Like kudzu !!! And the most cruel sport is basketball, given the need of the players.

In 1998 I wrote the BLACK BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION (BCA) acknowledging this change. A copy is enclosed. Twenty years! Who will be playing on our collegiate teams twenty years from now.

Screen Shot 2018-12-26 at 10.33.12 PM.png

E. THE 2018 US OPEN (TENNIS) –BLOG 232

Now retired from coaching tennis, I marvel at the changes in the game. The US OPEN men’s singles match between Nadal and Theim may have been the longest match ever played at that level of play. In 2012 it was apparent the next tactical gold mine was the drop shot. Now they have perfected how to defend this nightmare. What is next?
1. Temperature control. Eight players retired with heat the victor in early play.
2. Two of the all time best (and toughest) men–Federer and Nadal were victims, one to heat, one to injury. The parity of the players, and the number of them, has combined with technology to the point that even the fittest succumb. Somewhat like pro football, who is left at the end, wins. Most obvious first rule change: Only 2 of 3 sets.
3. There were no referees in small college team tennis matches when I began coaching. Players made all calls. The home coach was in charge of decisions. Some “goat rodeos” in those days. The point penalty system gave our new found referees a way to control misbehavior. Took a while. Illie Nastase shouted at the “cyclops” prototype “…you made in Russia!” The new machines can make a call as narrow as a blade of grass. Little arguments with modern line calls. The
2018 NCAA Mens Singles finals featured Wake Forest’s #2 player beating Wake’s #1 player in the finals. I witnessed a similar situation 45 years ago.
Small colleges often played in the NAIA. Presbyterian College of Clinton, SC was coached by Jim Shakespeare. And, similarly, their #1 (George Amaya) played their #2(Milan Kofol) for the title. The chair umpire and only official was the impeccable Mr. Marvin Richmond. Mr. Richmond, a small but quite neat man, had served a term as the head of the USTA.
College tennis was growing fast and needed rules. The NAIA had its unique behavior rule which simply stated ONE WARNING, SECOND OFFENSE—GAME. This was also before tiebreakers. Early in the close and heated (for teammates)match Mr. Richmond had given Kofol with a warning. At 7/7 in the final set, Amaya broke Kofol for the first service break in the set. This made the score 8/7 with Amaya to serve for the match. Kofol reeling from losing his serve, made the fatal mistake of underestimating the rules. Approaching his seat for the change over, he angrily threw his racket at his chair. Stunned, the quiet crowd heard a big voice from the small referee: “Penalty two. GAMES 9-7. Mr Amaya is the NAIA MEN’S SINGLES CHAMPION!”
Understandably Coach Shakespeare objected. His reason: “You can’t make that call, this is the national championship!” As Mr. Richardson descended to the bottom rung of umpire’s chair he straitened his necktie, turned to the coach and players and declared “WHAT BETTER TIME TO MAKE THE PROPER CALL.” And walked away.
There is written proof of my sincere admiration for the Williams family and what all they have accomplished over the years. At the same time, having watched more tennis this year than ever, my major complaint has been “…the rules do not allow throwing and/or damaging your racket. Male or Female, any day.
The rules are important. Examples are important.
Fewer rackets will be thrown.

F. BALLS OUT (231)—-ON COLLEGE TENNIS

BALLS OUT!

 

PHONE IS 252-764-3492

 

“HELPING  (blog 176)

“LITTLE  GREEN BOOK of TENNIS” (blog 164)

ACCESS TO BOTH IS FREE THROUGH ME OR PDF ON BLOG

 

ethomasparham@gmail. com

Yesterday I was the moderator of a podcast by colleague, John Danise, of Florida. John is old, like me, and like me, is a fan of tennis. We share many ideas as to how to enhance tennis in America, specifically high school and college team tennis.

 

The personal information above is a copy of contacts to work I have done. My son convinced me of THE CLOUD, and the willingness to give freely to anyone who will access the blog, or the free pdf to both books.

The topic we confronted yesterday was the persistent issue of how to make tennis better in America.   My belief has always been scholarship availability for American juniors is both legal, and a key to player improvement (and sadly, to the recent demise in quality).

I was particularly encouraged by two of our contributors, one American, one a South African.   Having lost the argument for some kind of reservation of scholarships, it is good to know there are bright, younger people aware of the problem, and the willingness to put some pressure on the big guns.

Maybe the best thing yesterday, was making people aware if the history of this battle. Both sides.   The second half of HELPING is all on the history of information I have gathered since 1970 (“pre—internet”) Some mine, mostly others.

Many have been aware of the issues and legality of the problem. It was good to hear there are some new ones with the passion for our tennis. (see “

Passing the Flag” (blog 163.)

 

PS you can hear the podcast from yesterday by googling yella ball network. Find the specific podcast and punch away.

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/ur10snetwork/2018/08/30/coach-danise-exploring-tennis-blessings-with-mentor-tom-parham

O. RE -EXAMINATION, APOLOGIES AND RE-AFFIRMATIONS (204)

  • I apologize to our women.   USOPEN SEMIFINALISTS!
  • Few good Americans develop without high school tennis.
  • Girls high school teams and girls of limited ability are the most neglected learners and often the most receptive.
  • The maturing of our women’s league players, coaches, and administrators is a gold mine of help for high school girls teams.  Boys too.
  • There are a lot of different ways to help our high school teams and coaches.
  • The two  toughest teaching spots are  developing  a working one hand backhand grip for 1. the slice and 2. the advanced serve.

Reflections on the 2017 Grand Slam

GRAND SLAM

The US Open tennis tournament in New York concludes the 2017 grand slams.   Might just be me but it seems there was the most ever tennis on television when it comes to great matches to view.

What were the highlights of the year?

  1. Has anyone ever played a better “surface season “ than Nadal did on clay this year?  Or with more laser-like focus than  yesterday’s   USOPEN final with Kevin Anderson?
  2. Could God have given us a better role model than Federer?
  3. Will the critics of American tennis be hushed by the women’s semifinalists in NYC’’s Open?
  4. Has there ever been a slam that featured more great early round matches (Halep vs Sharapova, Federer vs Tiafoe, etc.)?
  5. What is tennis going to do about injuries?   (Causes: Parity? Rackets, strings, balls, equipment,?   Three out of five sets for men? Intense movement?
  6. Thank you, Venus. And don’t let them forget what sister has done.
  7. Rock stars emerge, ie Denis Shapavolov,Coco, Sloane and Madison, etc.
  8. How did Sam Querry get so much better so fast?
  9. Kevin Anderson, the next bright international who honed tennis skills with 3 years of American college tennis experience?
  10. Will we look back in wonder as to how we survived without the roof. Or how many close call arguments technology saves ?
  11. Shouldn’t officials penalize racket crushers?
  12. Has the center of the court shifted to 2/3 on the forehand?
  13. Will the notable efforts of the USTA ( The roof and renovations, the Orlando program, the net/generation program, etc) do the trick?
  14. The Bryans have made better doubles world wide.

PS I continue to believe our best player development program is American college tennis, and we need to reserve scholarships for our kids first.

And that few of our best players get there without playing on their high school tennis team.   Some, but not many.

Tennis is a “travel sport”. Storm clouds are gathering.

If the USTA bought the rights to Pickleball they could have 10 million annual memberships next year, only then to grow annually. Watch what is going on.

Could the USTA develop its own college tennis division that would provide scholarship motivation worthy of the effort and expense required to earn a grant?

 

R. THE SCIENTIFIC METHOD, RECIPES, AND ALGORITHMS (199)

Mr. Wilton Powers taught us the scientific method in the 9th grade.  Seems very similar to the popular “algorithm” .  Or Mom would suggest –recipe.

The “domino effect” is another term anyone my age is well aware of.

Both apply to sports in American colleges today.   Watch what happens when a top tier basketball coach changes schools.  The next guys down the chain apply, one is picked and the chain moves down a rung.  And on and on to the last Division 111 coach doing it the right way.   A similar pattern is all too often repeated among D1 mens basketball players. Called”one and done”, it is more widely understood than algorithms.  One that makes many coaches jobs less appealing?

IS THE FOLLOWING AN ALGORITHM?

  1.  Collegiate athletes graduate, quit or somehow vacate a scholarship.
  2. The coach recruits the player best enabling him to win, or keep his/her job.
  3. The best players take the best scholarships and accrue the best education available in the USA.
  4. They return to wherever, educated.
  5. Those down the chain get a lesser education.

In Division 11 Men’s College Tennis (2017) the top five combined team’s rosters housed 63 total players.  Sixty-two  are international.  How far down the chain must an American tennis player go to get what’s left?

A.17 LINKS TO INTERNATIONAL ISSUE (180)

BELOW I HAVE LISTED SOME LINKS TO MY THOUGHTS ON AMERICAN COLLEGE SPORTS AND TENNIS PARTICULARLY.  CENTRAL TO MY CONCERN IS THE LACK OF SCHOLARSHIPS GIVEN TO AMERICANS AND THE LINK BETWEEN THIS ISSUE AND THE DECLINE OF THE QUALITY OF TENNIS IN AMERICA.  MY E-MAIL IS ethomasparham@gmail.com.   The blog is http://www.tomparham.wordpress.com.

https://wordpress.com/my-stats/?day=2016-11-28 (BLOG ADDRESS) INFORMATION ON LITTLE GREEN BOOK OF TENNIS

https://littlegreenbookoftennis.com/2016/11/02/what-to-do/ (WAYNE BRYAN/PATRICK MCENROE) plus the accompanying comments.

https://littlegreenbookoftennis.com/2016/10/24/helping/ (THIS IS A BOOK SIZED MANUAL WITH A TON OF HISTORY ON THIS ISSUE)

https://littlegreenbookoftennis.com/2016/10/24/day-dream-believer-175/ (WHAT IF?)

https://littlegreenbookoftennis.com/2016/07/24/the-gorilla-bureaucrat-169/

https://littlegreenbookoftennis.com/2016/07/24/fault-lines-168/

https://littlegreenbookoftennis.com/2016/03/16/xenophobia/

https://littlegreenbookoftennis.com/2015/08/09/follow-the-trail-137

This represents a few of the 180 articles.   My two main efforts are directed at the scholarships  issue and ways to better high school tennis for players, coaches, teams.