The NCAA tennis tournaments weren’t televised last spring. So the association, instead of reworking its agreement with ESPN or changing its marketing strategy, decided the tennis championship itself needed a makeover.
On Aug. 13, the NCAA released a report containing a number of recommendations meant to shorten matches during the event.
But the makeover they had in mind didn’t sit well with anyone.
NCAA TENNIS CHANGES
- The NCAA initially recommended the following measures be implemented in championship matches.
- Remove the warm-up with the opponent before matches
- Reduce time between singles and doubles from 10 to five minutes
- Shorten each changeover (break between odd-numbered games) from 90 to 60 seconds
- Replace the third set in singles with a 10-point tiebreaker
- Reduce the eight-game doubles set to six games
“It’s been unanimous,” UNC men’s tennis coach Sam Paul said. “I haven’t really heard of anyone who supports the proposals, but then again, I don’t speak for everyone. We just don’t feel that it’s broke, and we don’t think it needs to be fixed.”
In response to criticism from coaches, players and fans around the nation, the NCAA rescinded late Wednesday afternoon the most controversial of the recommendations: a 10-point tiebreaker in place of the third set in the singles match and a truncated doubles set.