The 2016-17 Georgia men’s tennis schedule, which includes a trip to Puerto Rico in the fall and a minimum of 12 matchups against NCAA Tournament teams from a year ago, will culminate with the return of the NCAA Championships to Athens, head coach Manuel Diaz announced on Wednesday.
The 2017 NCAA Men’s and Women’s Tennis Championships will be held at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex for the 32nd time in school history on May 18-29. Georgia has hosted the men’s championships on 24 occasions and the women’s championships three times, in addition to four combined tournaments, most recently in 2014.
“We are excited about this year’s schedule, which will conclude with us hosting the NCAA Championships in May,” Diaz said. “Athens has been home to so many great memories for tennis coaches, players and fans from all across the nation, and we look forward to everyone being on our campus once again for this one-of-a-kind event.
“As far as the schedule itself, we are thrilled about the trip to Puerto Rico in September to kick off the season and look forward to a strong fall from our guys before we head into dual-match play. The SEC is always very tough and competitive, and this year will be no different. We also face several strong non-conference teams who will be in contention for the national championship this season, so that will help us get ready for postseason play. We are excited about this upcoming season and look forward to getting it started in September.”
Notable aspects of Georgia’s 2016-17 schedule:
** The fall season opens with a trip to Puerto Rico for the Palmas Tournament on Sept. 9-11, followed by the USTA Pro Circuit in Columbus, Ohio. Georgia then returns home to host the Southern Intercollegiate Championships on Sept. 23-26. In all, Georgia will play in nine tournaments in the fall.
** Georgia hosts the ITA Kickoff Weekend for the ninth consecutive year on Jan. 27-29. Joining the Bulldogs in Athens will be Alabama, Washington and Purdue. The ITA Team Indoor Championships will take place Feb. 17-19 in Charlottesville, Va.
** The SEC/Pac-12 Showdown will be held Feb 4-5 in Gainesville, Fla. Along with the Bulldogs, USC, UCLA and host-school Florida will participate in the event.
** Georgia will welcome six SEC schools — Ole Miss, Arkansas, LSU, Alabama, Florida, South Carolina — to the Dan Magill Tennis Complex this spring. The Bulldogs have not lost to an SEC opponent at home since 2012 (4-3 to No. 9 Kentucky) — a string of 26-straight matches. Georgia will travel to Vanderbilt, Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi State, Auburn and Texas A&M.
** Georgia’s non-conference slate features four teams who will all be in contention for a national title this season — USC, UCLA, Wake Forest and Ohio State. The four squads combined for a 106-8 record last season, winning a combined 93 percent of their matches.
** The NCAA Championships return to Athens for the third time since 2012. Georgia played host to 13 NCAA Championships in a row from 1977-89. In 2006, the NCAA opted to have one combined site for the men’s and women’s championships. The Bulldogs have won the NCAA title six times, including five in Athens.
2016-17 Georgia Men’s Tennis Schedule
Sept. 9-11, Palmas Tournament (Puerto Rico)
Sept. 19, USTA Pro Circuit (Columbus, Ohio)
Sept. 23-26, Southern Intercollegiates (Athens)
Oct. 3-5, All-America Qualifiers (Tulsa, Okla.)
Oct. 6-10, All-America Championships (Tulsa, Okla.)
Oct. 13-16, ITA/Oracle Championships (Malibu, Calif.)
Oct. 19-24, ITA Southeast Regionals (Tallahassee)
Oct. 31, USTA Pro Circuit (Charlottesville, Va.)
Oct. 31, USTA Pro Circuit (Birmingham, Ala.)
Nov. 3-6, USTA/ITA National Indoor Collegiate Championships (New York)
Nov. 4-6, Bulldog Scramble (Athens)
Jan. 14-16, MLK/Georgia Tech Invitational (Atlanta)
Jan. 20, at Georgia Tech (Atlanta)
Jan. 27-29, ITA Kickoff Weekend (Athens)
Feb. 4-5, SEC/Pac 12 Showdown (Gainesville, Fla.)
Feb. 12, at Ohio State (Columbus, Ohio)
Feb. 17-19, ITA National Team Indoor Championships (Charlottesville, Va.)
March 3, at Vanderbilt (Nashville, Tenn.)
March 5, at Kentucky (Lexington, Ky.)
March 10, vs. Ole Miss (Athens)
March 12, vs. Arkansas (Athens)
March 17, vs. Wake Forest (Athens)
March 19, at Tennessee (Knoxville, Tenn.)
March 23, vs. LSU (Athens)
March 25, vs. Alabama (Athens)
March 30, at Mississippi State (Starkville, Miss.)
April 1, at Auburn (Auburn, Ala.)
April 7, vs. Florida (Athens)
April 9, vs. South Carolina (Athens)
April 15, at Texas A&M (College Station, Texas)
April 26-30, SEC Tournament (Knoxville, Tenn.)
May 13-15, NCAA First and Second Rounds (TBA)
May 18-29, NCAA Championships (Athens)