The WAC men's and women's tennis teams arrive in Boise next week. All of them. Both league championship tournaments will decide who moves on to the NCAA's to challenge the best college tennis teams in country for the 2006 National Championship.
"The big stuff is now coming up. We travel to Denver this weekend to play #63 Denver University on Friday the 14th and #28 University of Colorado on Saturday the 15th. Both are very tough schools. Especially #28 Colorado who just beat #18 Texas A&M. (lost 2-5 to #3 Texas last weekend)." Greg Patton, April 9, 2006.
The #37 University of San Diego Toreros arrived in town Wednesday. They wanted a win over Boise State…and they got it. The Bronco's won the doubles point by winning all three matches to lead 1-0. That was the end of it. The Broncos lost five of the six singles matches and went down in an upset loss, 2-5.
The San Diego match had been scheduled for play in Boise earlier this season, but was weathered out. Not making excuses, but the Toreros should be ranked higher than #37. And next week I'm sure they will be. They feature Patrick Ysern ranked #47 in singles by ITA, and Ysern and Thomas Liversage ranked # 6 by ITA in doubles.
Ysern has a 2006 major upset over UCLA's Ben Kohlloefel, ranked #1 in the nation by ITA. He reached the finals of the NCAA tennis tournament last year. San Diego has been hot and cold but holds 2006 wins over #42 Texas Tech, #50 USC, #56 Utah, #59 San Diego St., #58 UNLV, and #59 Eastern Tennessee St.
Looking forward to Friday, and the #63 Denver match. The Pioneers are fresh off a 5-2 upset win over #57 Nebraska. The rest of the season has been a struggle. They have losses to #10 Miami (0-7), #20 Washington (0-7), #33 TCU (0-4), #43 SMU (0-7), and UTAH (3-4).
Looking forward to Saturday, and the #28 Colorado match. The Buffs are a sleeper. They have lost much of their intensity. No doubt the recent announcement of the cancellation of the Colorado tennis program had a lot to do with it. Covering the expense of hiring the new Colorado football coach, and buying out the old football coach reached a sum in excess of $10,000,000. The tennis program, about $370,000, is to be eliminated to help cover the athletic budget going forward.
The fact remains. No BCS school likes to lose to a Mid-Major. The Broncos will have their hands full with the Buffs.
The Bronco ladies play at The Appleton Tennis Center this week. They play Utah State at 3 P.M. Thursday, Nevada at 2:PM on Friday and Idaho at 1:30 on Saturday. The ladies have a good chance of entering the WAC tourney with a 20-3 record.
A word about next week's WAC tournaments. The Broncos will host both the ladies (April 20-22), and the men (April 21-23).
A quick look at the favorites? As on the gridiron, it's Boise State and Fresno State.
The ladies: #24 Fresno State, is led by four ITA ranked players, #21 and #96 in singles; and #6 and #51 in doubles. #63 Boise State has no ITA ranked players, but sports a 17-3 win-loss record.
The men: #23 Boise State, is led by three ranked players at #29 and #122 in singles, and #18 in doubles. They sport a 17-5 win-loss record. #47 Fresno State is lead by two ITA ranked players, #63 in singles, and #49 in doubles. They have a 16-6 win-loss record.
Notes: California Junior College All American, and league MVP, Stanley Sarapanich, will not be available. He must sit out the remainder of the 2006 season. He will be ready to play next year. Stanley was a four star player in high School in tennis hot bed Southern California.
To add to the insult, it looks like the NCAA will not clear Kean Feeder for play this year either. He must sit out the remainder of the 2006 season.