Junior Tennis Athletes Tell Us How They Decided
As a young tennis athlete, one of the biggest decisions to make is whether to attend college after high school, or go directly into the Pro Circuit.
This being Fall Signing Week, many of our Athletic DNA junior players are in the midst of this decision, so we asked them how they went about making their choice?
“I feel like there are many parts of my game that I need to work on before I join the pro circuit,” said Elliott Orkin who chose the University of Florida. “Attending college will give me the best opportunity to improve my game, and hopefully be able to make it on the tour in the future.”
Ronnie Schneider, who will attend the University of North Carolina said, “my goal is to get into the Top 100 and become the best player that I can be. I felt like college tennis will help me to accomplish these goals. Plus the chance to study at a university such as North Carolina was a huge opportunity.”
While for some this is a life-altering decision, for others the choice was always clear.
“A college education has always been the plan for me,” said Greg Garcia who chose to attend Brown. “My tennis skills and fitness still need to be fine-tuned before I think of making it on the tour.”
Many tennis athletes that we talk to credit the continued guidance of a coach as a major reason they choose to attend college, as well as the advantages that an education offers.
“The coaches [at the University of Florida] were a huge part of my decision,” said Orkin. “Brian Shelton has over 20 years of experience coaching college tennis. Amer Delic is just coming off the tour, and knows what it takes to be a top player. Also a combination of the campus, academics, and the players on the team lead me to choose Florida.”
“I am going to North Carolina because I felt it was the best fit all around for me,” said Schneider. “I really like the coaches and the guys on the team. The academics are great, and the campus is absolutely beautiful.”
“I chose Brown because I would be getting a top education at an Ivy League school while being able to play for a top 50 school in the nation” said Garcia. “I love the Brown campus as well as the Rhode Island vibe. Also, Coach Schwarz and the tennis team are a great group of guys to practice with everyday.”
Overall we heard that for young athletes, college was the best next step to mature and develop both mentally and physically before taking on the very competitive world of Professional Tennis.
Plus coming out of this developmental phase with a degree will secure your future – no matter what it may hold.
“I’m looking forward to forming a strong sense of structure and independence in college,” said Nick Crystal who will attend the University of Southern California. “I will have to be very disciplined in my tennis and school work to do it all.”
And that is exactly the attitude you will need to make it professionally in tennis as well.