1. College coaches do not care about high school tennis because the results are generally against far inferior players. Many of the top kids have high school records that would never be attainable in USTA play so it really doesn't say much about the kid as a player. My son did play HS tennis, was the team captain in 11 & 12th grade, MVP for 3 years and loved to encourage the players on the team no matter their level. I was a good parent who went to support the team, and my goodness...most of the matches painful to watch but I gave kudos to the kids who got out there and played regardless of level. You never know who may be sparked by HS tennis and continue to do good things, but to think that a college coach really cares, No, I don't think so...except 4 year varsity,team captain and MVP does look good on a college application and it shows that a kid is a team player. That, in fact, is what my son enjoys most about this lonely game, the team aspect and he has won MVP for the past two years on his college team.

  2. What is important is the quality of the competition. You can get ratings points winning a bunch of level 5 opens (or playing the #2 line in high school). That isn't going to matter to a college coach - you need to play the best competition

  3. We've been told time and time again that college coaches DO care about high school tennis because it shows that the player understands the team dynamic!! Tennis is such a very lonely sport & the commitment to a high school tennis team can be very important to the development of the "team player." From what we hear, college coaches do not necessarily want the top, 5-star, blue-chip player---they want someone who will fit into their team. NOT ONLY THAT - we've been told that college coaches DO care about doubles - something that very few tournament players even think twice about - until it's too late. Just a different perspective for you...

  4. Being a team captain is very impressive for college admissions. Whether it is editor of the school newspaper, head of the debate team or being captain of a team, it all boils down to leadership, and college admissions do look for that.

  5. I think there's a vast difference in what college admissions officers are looking for and what college tennis coaches are looking for in an applicant/recruit. For admissions officers, yes, playing on the high school team and being the captain looks great! For college coaches, they're looking at a whole host of things like who you've beaten, your attitude on the court, your work ethic, your ability to fit in with the existing team members, etc. And, yes, I think grades matter, too, to the coaches because they don't want to have to worry whether or not you'll be able to keep up with your studies while training and playing for the team. It's a complicated process, for sure! To learn more, go back and read/listen to some of my interviews with the various college coaches and college recruiting consultants - they all share great information!

  6. I love this article. Thank you so much. I have been coaching college tennis at Div 1, 2, and 3 levels for over twenty years and don't like to recruit the players that choose NOT to play for their high school teams. No doubt there are an increasing number of individuals not playing high school tennis, but I find the best teammates are the ones that do play high school tennis. I try not to blanket all players in one category, but generally think that a player is all about themselves when they do not play for their HS. One player I coached in the past that was ranked in the top 100 in the country in the 18s was never on a HS team and really struggled to be a good teammate in college. Talent is important when recruiting, but building a good team atmosphere is just as important to me. I think my players really enjoy that comeraderie about our team. Thanks for sharing. Respectfully, Rick Edelmann, Men's Tennis Coach, Boston University

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