Team USA Update
I just received the following via email from USTA and wanted to share it with those of you who haven”t yet had a chance to participate in a Team USA Forum. Apologies for the wonky formatting but I’m posting from my phone!
TEAM USA Initiatives
TEAM USA Coaches Reception and Recognition
• We conducted the first “TEAM USA Easter Bowl Coaches’ Reception” in April 2014 with approximately 80 coaches in attendance.
• Coaches recognized for their accomplishments were:
o 2013 TEAM USA Developmental Coach of the Year: Joseph Gilbert
o 2013 TEAM USA Junior Development Program of the Year: JTCC in College Park, MD
o TEAM USA Coaching Legend Award: Jerry Baskin, Nick Bollettieri, Robert Lansdorp and Jack Sharpe.
• Award recipients were also invited to the President’s Suite at the 2014 US Open.
TEAM USA Forums for Parents and Coaches
• The TEAM USA initiative is about inclusion, transparency and communication—with and between players, parents, coaches and USTA Player Development, both at the national level and at the sectional level. We want to provide as much information possible to help players and coaches reach their maximum potential.
• We plan to conduct the TEAM USA Forums on a quarterly basis in 2015 (end of March, end of June, end of September and in December). Each of these forums will focus more specifically on 2-3 topics. Please look for more detailed information soon.
• Feel free at any time to reach out to us at TEAMUSA@usta.com with any question or comment that you may have.
Tracking TEAM USA Coaches through TennisLink
• Fields for Primary Coach and Club/Program/Academy and well as Secondary Coach (when applicable) and Club/Program/Academy will be added to the registration process in TennisLink for 5 major tournaments in 2015 (Easter Bowl, Clay Courts, Hard Courts, National Masters and Winter Championships).
• Players will be asked to complete this information regarding their coaches when they register, so we can more clearly and accurately track top players and the coaches they are working with as we continue to move toward more coach inclusiveness and recognition.
• We will reach out to coaches using the e-mails provided by the players, asking them to “opt in” to our mailing list to receive updates, information and invitations for specific opportunities.
TEAM USA National Coaches Commission
• We currently are having discussions on the potential benefits of having a national coaches’ commission to serve as a sounding board for USTA PD initiatives, and to offer recommendations for the future.
• The plans for the possible implementation of the National Coaches Commission have not been determined, but will be discussed by Player Development’s leadership in the first quarter of 2015.
TEAM USA Player/Program Recognition
• Programs who have a player qualify for a USTA Player Development Excellence Grant will be sent a banner to highlight the player/program.
• Determined in 2014, banners will be sent at the start of 2015.
• Each of the 8 Regional Training Centers (RTC’s) will be provided with two banners each, indicating that they are an RTC.
• One banner will be provided to each host site for TEAM USA Sectional Camps, Regional Camps and EDC Camps.
TEAM USA Player Pathway Analysis
• We assembled an advisory team of 25 experts in the field for assistance in developing questions that they would like answered by the study.
• Dr. Mark Kovacs headed up the study and assembled a research team.
• Data gathering and research began in August of 2014.
• First phase of study was completed by January 2015.
• Dissemination and implementation of study’s findings will take place in first quarter of 2015.
TEAM USA National Junior Teams
• Based on the previous Jr. Davis Cup/Jr. Fed Cup teams model.
• We will implement one male team and one female team for the summer of 2015.
• Will include 14, 15 and 16 year old players who earn the position, with spots on the team to be earned by a combination of on court tournament accomplishments with remaining posts determined by a playoff.
• Players’ primary coaches will be a part of training and team schedule.
• USTA National Coaches will only coach players on the team at international events, not at national tournaments.
TEAM USA Coach Inclusiveness
• Increased number of coaches have been asked and hired to help execute our TEAM USA Sectional and TEAM USA Regional Camps across the country.
• Primary coaches have been invited to attend TEAM USA Regional and TEAM USA National Camps with their players, and offered a small stipend to help offset costs of the trip.
TEAM USA Jr. Grand Slam Incentive
• USTA Player Development will help offset expenses (with a stipend of $1000) for any full-time coach who has a player competing in the main draw (singles) of the Jr. Australian Open, Jr. French Open or Jr. Wimbledon to attend the event and watch their player compete.
• This program was implemented in 2014 and continues with 2015.
• For more detailed information or to submit an application to receive your stipend, please contact John Lansville at Lansville@usta.com.