The 11th USP International College Tennis Showcase Brought Over 70 College Coaches And 120 Players To The Midtown Athletic Club In Weston.
MIAMI, FL - After 10 years, 400 players signed and over 6 million dollars in scholarship out of the USP International College Tennis Showcase, Thomas E. Anderson, the Showcase founder had some lofty expectations coming into the second decade of USP College Tennis Showcases.
These expectations where shattered after 120 players and 70 College Coaches converged this past December 2nd and 3rd in the Midtown Athletic Club in Weston.
Thomas, who as a junior tennis player was signed to a scholarship via regular mail, understood how much things have changed since the 70’s. He was aware of how difficult it was for coaches to offer a scholarship without seeing a recruit play. For this reason, he took advantage of College coaches being in the South Florida Area for the Eddie Herr and Orange Bowl Tournament to put in place an event that would increase junior players’ chances to be recruited.
“I felt this was an amazing opportunity to have a couple of coaches see some players that didn’t have the resources to travel and due to this didn’t have a high ranking or weren’t in the college coaches radar,” Thomas said. “Most of the time, these players were the hidden jewel in the recruitment season for some coaches.”
In its 11th year, the USP Showcase sponsored by Babolat, PlaySight, PTR and KIND Snacks, was far away from just a couple of coaches. Over 70 participated, highlighted by NCAA DI National Champion University of Virginia, University of Florida, Louisville, Virginia Tech, Auburn University, Brown University, Columbia University, Florida State, Miami, NCAA DII Champion Barry and NJCAA Champion ASA College.
“We expected a maximum of 100 players and 60 coaches,” Thomas said. “The fact that we exceeded these numbers makes me very happy because of all the hard work that has paid off.”
While the rain tried to make things harder the first day of the event, coaches were still happy to get an opportunity to chat and talk to players one-on-one.
“I think (the Showcase) simplifies things a lot,” Mario Rincon, the Head Men Tennis Coach at the University of Miami, said. “It saves us a lot time in the recruiting process. There is plenty of talent to go around at this showcase.”
The second and last day, the Florida weather smiled back and gave a chance to play to the 120 players in short matches format.
Kevin Major, a transfer student from Bahamas who was recruited by most of the top Universities, said that he never thought to be approached by as many college coaches.
“I like the environment of the Showcase,” Major said. “It’s good to see this many coaches and interact with them.”
Over 60 percent of players participating are expected to be recruited but the event director doesn’t think any goal is too small as of now.
“Last time we set a goal, we basically shattered it,” Thomas said. “This time around, I am ready for the best.”
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