The University of Georgia men’s tennis team claimed the top spot in the TennisRecruiting.net 2016 recruiting rankings, receiving all 22 first-place votes in the organization’s media poll.
Fresh off its fourth-straight Southeastern Conference Championship and its 23rd all-time NCAA semifinals appearance, the Bulldogs will welcome four highly-ranked prospects to the 2016-17 lineup, including the top player in the nation in Nathan Ponwith, as well as fourth-ranked Robert Loeb, ninth-ranked Alex Phillips and 22nd-ranked Alex Diaz. All four prospects signed with the Bulldogs this past fall.
“We are beyond excited about this year’s signing class and the future of Georgia tennis,” head coach Manuel Diaz said. “We had a great team and a strong senior class that was able to accomplish so much this past season. With the players that we have coming back and the addition of these new guys, Bulldog fans have a lot to look forward to in the years to come.”
The latest rankings were calculated based on votes from reporters, national and international tournament directors, referees, ranking chairmen and writers from all across the country. Each of the panelists submitted his or her take on the top-25 class, with schools receiving 25 points for each first-place vote, 24 for each second-place vote, on down to one point for each 25th-place vote. Georgia received 550 total votes, with USC coming in second with 466 and Duke at No. 3 with 449 votes.
Ponwith, Loeb, Phillips and Diaz will join six returning players from this year’s team, including First-Team All-SEC performer Wayne Montgomery, Second-Team All-SEC selection Paul Oosterbaan and SEC All-Freshman Team pick Walker Duncan, as well as rising sophomores Jan Zielinski and Emil Reinberg and rising junior Andy Martinez.