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View Poll Results: Who has the top recruiting class for 2009-2010 as of June 1st

Stanford 4 50.00%
Northwestern 0 0%
Harvard 1 12.50%
Illinois 0 0%
Arizona State 0 0%
Florida 2 25.00%
UCLA 0 0%
Arkansas 1 12.50%
Voters: 8. You may not vote on this poll

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Old Jun 2nd, 2009, 08:23 AM   #1
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recruiting class rankings - 2009-2010

TRN has awarded Stanford as having the best recruiting class for 2009. But their rankings don't include transfers and don't seem to reflect how good some international players are.

Here is a list of the top recruiting class candidates with some info.

Stanford
1. Stacey Tan - blue chip high 3, WTA high 638
2. Mallory Burdette - blue chip high 5, ITF high 26
3. Natalie Dillon - 4 star high 106

Northwestern
1. Linda Abu Mushraf - blue chip high 12
2. Kate Turvy - blue chip high 10
3. Brittany Wowchuk - Canada Under 16 #2, ITF high 254

Harvard
1. Hideko Tachibana - blue chip high 8
2. Kristin Norton - blue chip high 17
3. Sophie Chang - 5 star high 16
4. Alexandra Lehman - 5 star high 31

Illinois
1. Rachael White - blue chip high 3
2. Breanne Smutko - blue chip high 18

Arizona State
1. Jacqueline Cako - blue chip high 2
2. Nicole Smith - 5 star high 37, ITF high 127

Florida
1. Lauren Embree - blue chip high 1
2. Claire Bartlett - blue chip high 10 in 2007
3. Brittany Borsanyi - 5 star high 50

UCLA
1. Pamela Montez - blue chip high 11, ITF high 55
2. Stephanie Hoffpauir - 5 star high 16
3. Marie Zalameda - 4 star high 99

Arkansas
1. Claudine Paulson - ITF high 85
2. Kelsey Sundaram - WTA high 949
3. Stephanie Roy - WTA high 1000
4. Annemijn Koenen - 4 star high 134
5. Adriana Reynoso - 3 star high 310

After reviewing this list please vote on the poll above for who you think has the top recruiting class.


Here's the TRN recruiting class rankings.

Last edited by gouci : Jun 2nd, 2009 at 05:47 PM.
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Old Jun 3rd, 2009, 09:22 PM   #2
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Re: recruiting class rankings - 2009-2010

Those are all pretty stout classes. I agree with Stanford at 1, just edging out Florida (with a 5-star walk-on!) and Northwestern. Illinois gets the most improved, as that is definitely a stellar class for a team that doesn't have the track record of some of the others.

I agree that the internationals players are very underrated while the ivy league schools are very overrated. It's not necessarily that the ivy players are any less talented, but those kids aren't going to college to play tennis and that ends up showing up the the results and in the way the players usually decline over the course of 4 years. Every year you have several ivies in the top 25 but you never have any ivies in the top 25 of the rankings. I'm not knocking them - I could certainly not have put in the time necessary to be both a good college tennis player AND a good student at an ivy league school...and you can't penalize the rankings of the recruiting classes for a decline that hasn't even happened to them yet (even if history tells you that it is going to).

Not just to pick a fight with you UCI but I do think that Long Beach should be quite a bit higher. Their recruiting class is certainly at least as strong as Ohio State, who came out 16. Congrats to tennisrecruiting for finally at least acknowledging international recruits, although they are still far from rating them proportionately to American juniors. Kelsey Sundaram who is someone that gouci and I had talked about recently is 950ish WTA and didn't have a tennisrecruiting ranking. Obviously she was on the big school radars as she still ended up going to a top-25 school, but I think that the disconnect between reality and these rankings (and the borderline anti-international sentiment) is almost comical. All of the sudden Sundaram (who is American-born but lived in India) plays a few US junior tournaments and she's 30 in the US juniors and she becomes a 5-star. Kudos to gouci for recognizing that she was worthy of mention before tennisrecruiting did. My point is, if someone that is 950 WTA is equal to a 30ish US junior, then you can only imagine that a 600 WTA player would be equal to a blue chip.

Anyway I think they got the teams at the top right but I imagine that the usual suspects bringing in international players like Arkansas and Baylor and now the ones trying to emulate them like Long Beach and SMU would replace the ivies if tennisrecruiting did a "true" top 25.

Ps - will they update this in August or is this the final ranking?
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Old Jun 4th, 2009, 12:49 PM   #3
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Re: recruiting class rankings - 2009-2010

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Originally Posted by 10sE View Post
Those are all pretty stout classes. I agree with Stanford at 1, just edging out Florida (with a 5-star walk-on!) and Northwestern. Illinois gets the most improved, as that is definitely a stellar class for a team that doesn't have the track record of some of the others.

I agree that the internationals players are very underrated while the ivy league schools are very overrated. It's not necessarily that the ivy players are any less talented, but those kids aren't going to college to play tennis and that ends up showing up the the results and in the way the players usually decline over the course of 4 years. Every year you have several ivies in the top 25 but you never have any ivies in the top 25 of the rankings. I'm not knocking them - I could certainly not have put in the time necessary to be both a good college tennis player AND a good student at an ivy league school...and you can't penalize the rankings of the recruiting classes for a decline that hasn't even happened to them yet (even if history tells you that it is going to).

Not just to pick a fight with you UCI but I do think that Long Beach should be quite a bit higher. Their recruiting class is certainly at least as strong as Ohio State, who came out 16. Congrats to tennisrecruiting for finally at least acknowledging international recruits, although they are still far from rating them proportionately to American juniors. Kelsey Sundaram who is someone that gouci and I had talked about recently is 950ish WTA and didn't have a tennisrecruiting ranking. Obviously she was on the big school radars as she still ended up going to a top-25 school, but I think that the disconnect between reality and these rankings (and the borderline anti-international sentiment) is almost comical. All of the sudden Sundaram (who is American-born but lived in India) plays a few US junior tournaments and she's 30 in the US juniors and she becomes a 5-star. Kudos to gouci for recognizing that she was worthy of mention before tennisrecruiting did. My point is, if someone that is 950 WTA is equal to a 30ish US junior, then you can only imagine that a 600 WTA player would be equal to a blue chip.

Anyway I think they got the teams at the top right but I imagine that the usual suspects bringing in international players like Arkansas and Baylor and now the ones trying to emulate them like Long Beach and SMU would replace the ivies if tennisrecruiting did a "true" top 25.

Ps - will they update this in August or is this the final ranking?
Northwesterns class is the best. Whats the story with the Florida coach. He has the sister last year in Borsanyi at Florida and she leaves for Baylor. Now he brings in the sister.
It is refreshing to see some of the top 20 schools in college tennis that are able to win with American players only.
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Old Jun 4th, 2009, 01:49 PM   #4
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Re: recruiting class rankings - 2009-2010

Take a look at how Notre Dame did with ALL Americans. Good for them and their coach for a job well done with US girls. Go Irish!
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Old Jun 4th, 2009, 06:39 PM   #5
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Re: recruiting class rankings - 2009-2010

TRN awarded Stanford the top spot, but I think it is possible that those who voted for the top recruiting classes may have based their votes on the updated rankings since a handful of players committed in the spring. The players' high rankings have changed since fall 2008. Here are the updated high rankings if anyone is interested:

Stanford
1. Stacey Tan- Blue Chip, High 4
2. Mallory Burdette- Blue Chip, High 9
3. Natalie Dillon- 4 star, high 102

Northwestern
1. Linda Abu Mushraf- Blue Chip, high 12
2. Kate Turvy- Blue Chip, high 8
3. Brittany Wowchuck- Same as above

Harvard
1. Hideko Tachibana- Blue Chip, high 6
2. Kristin Norton- Blue Chip, high 12
3. Sophie Chang- 5 Star, high 18
4. Alexandra Lehman- 5 Star, high 24

Illinois
1. Rachael White- Blue Chip, high 6
2. Breanne Smutko- Blue Chip, high 17

AZ. State
1. J. Cako- Blue Chip, high 2
2. Nicole Smith- 5 Star, high 37

Florida
1. Lauren Embree- Blue Chip, high 1
2. Claire Bartlett- Blue Chip, high 10
3. Brittany Borsanyi- 5 Star, high 39

UCLA
1. Pamela Montez- Blue Chip, high 11
2. Stephanie Hoffpauir- 5 Star, high 7
3. Marie Zalameda- 4 Star, high 107

Arkansas
1. Claudine Paulson- Same as above
2. Sundaram- Same as above
3. Roy- Same as above
4. Koenen- 4 star, high 126
5. Reynoso- Same as above
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Old Jun 4th, 2009, 07:29 PM   #6
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Re: recruiting class rankings - 2009-2010

Thank you TRG1975. It is important to have accurate rankings in order to have a fair vote. Don't know why only selective players are updated and others not. Good job!
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Old Jun 4th, 2009, 08:04 PM   #7
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Re: recruiting class rankings - 2009-2010

trg1975 you make a common mistake. If a player is graduating in 2009 all her 2009 weekly rankings are less valid than those of 2008. Let me explain why.

1. TRN's 2008 ratings (blue chip, 5 star, etc...) are based on a 1 year period from Sept. 2007 to Sept. 2008.

Ex. Stephanie Hoffpauir is a 5 star with a 2009 high of 7.

a.) Does that mean she is now rated a blue chip as of today? No.
b.) Does that mean if she stays in the top 25 she will be rated a blue chip next time in Oct. 2009? No.

Hoffpauir will permanently be a rated 5 star player at TRN. That's because the last rating TRN gives any player is made in October prior to their graduation year.


2. There's a good reason why TRN stops rating players in October prior to their graduation year.

Ex. Kristin Norton has a ranking high of 12 as of today. One reason why her 2009 high ranking is much higher than her #21 ranking in October 2008 when the last ratings came out can be seen when I list all the elite players that are in her graduation class and were ranked ahead of Norton but dropped out of the rankings in 2009.

1. Mallory Cecil
2. Stacy Tan
3. Linda Abu Mushraf
4. Nicole Bartnik
5. Nelly Radeva

Not to mention those in her graduation class and were ranked ahead of Norton that dropped out of the rankings sometime in 2008.

1. Coco Vandeweghe
2. Gail Brodsky
3. Asia Muhammad
4. Tanya Raykova
5. Pamela Montez
6. Alison Riske

Seeing both lists of top players that were ahead of Norton but that have dropped out of the rankings since the last 4 months of 2008 to today is why the 2009 rankings are less valid.

Not to mention all the top players who are still ranked but their ranking has dipped because they have started to play pro tournaments (not counted in rankings) in favor of the junior tournaments.

Last edited by gouci : Jun 4th, 2009 at 08:13 PM.
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Old Jun 4th, 2009, 08:55 PM   #8
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Re: recruiting class rankings - 2009-2010

Good explanation. Thanks. However, looks like TRN should freeze the rankings as of Sept '08. You are basically saying that the TRN rankings don't mean anything after that date (Sept.). TRN continues to update the rankings every week. I understand that many players stop playing junior tournaments once they commit, however, there are those seniors that keep playing and should be rewarded for it. There are many seniors who continue to commit throughout their last year and continue to work on their ranking.
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Old Jun 4th, 2009, 09:22 PM   #9
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Re: recruiting class rankings - 2009-2010

Quote:
Originally Posted by gouci View Post
trg1975 you make a common mistake. If a player is graduating in 2009 all her 2009 weekly rankings are less valid than those of 2008. Let me explain why.

1. TRN's 2008 ratings (blue chip, 5 star, etc...) are based on a 1 year period from Sept. 2007 to Sept. 2008.

Ex. Stephanie Hoffpauir is a 5 star with a 2009 high of 7.

a.) Does that mean she is now rated a blue chip as of today? No.
b.) Does that mean if she stays in the top 25 she will be rated a blue chip next time in Oct. 2009? No.

Hoffpauir will permanently be a rated 5 star player at TRN. That's because the last rating TRN gives any player is made in October prior to their graduation year.


2. There's a good reason why TRN stops rating players in October prior to their graduation year.

Ex. Kristin Norton has a ranking high of 12 as of today. One reason why her 2009 high ranking is much higher than her #21 ranking in October 2008 when the last ratings came out can be seen when I list all the elite players that are in her graduation class and were ranked ahead of Norton but dropped out of the rankings in 2009.

1. Mallory Cecil
2. Stacy Tan
3. Linda Abu Mushraf
4. Nicole Bartnik
5. Nelly Radeva

Not to mention those in her graduation class and were ranked ahead of Norton that dropped out of the rankings sometime in 2008.

1. Coco Vandeweghe
2. Gail Brodsky
3. Asia Muhammad
4. Tanya Raykova
5. Pamela Montez
6. Alison Riske

Seeing both lists of top players that were ahead of Norton but that have dropped out of the rankings since the last 4 months of 2008 to today is why the 2009 rankings are less valid.

Not to mention all the top players who are still ranked but their ranking has dipped because they have started to play pro tournaments (not counted in rankings) in favor of the junior tournaments.
Thanks for the explanation. I do not agree with part of the system that TRN uses because of the fact that many girls (and boys) keep playing their senior year. I think that they should still award ratings (blue chip, 5 star, etc.) to players after (or even during) their senior year because girls and boys do not move up in the rankings only because the "elite" players drop off the board. This is why I do not believe their system is 100% accurate. If players decide to play professional tournaments, then TRN should find a way to keep those players included in the rankings, and only drop them off the board if they turn pro...
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Old Jun 4th, 2009, 10:23 PM   #10
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Re: recruiting class rankings - 2009-2010

Quote:
Originally Posted by trg1975 View Post
I think that they should still award ratings (blue chip, 5 star, etc.) to players after (or even during) their senior year because girls and boys do not move up in the rankings only because the "elite" players drop off the board. This is why I do not believe their system is 100% accurate. If players decide to play professional tournaments, then TRN should find a way to keep those players included in the rankings, and only drop them off the board if they turn pro...
I agree...and when they do that, they can also start rating international players correctly.

As for the schools doing well with all (or mostly) Americans, yes - good for them. Now if we want more than 10 good tennis teams, we're going to have to accept international players. I'm sure that Notre Dame, Stanford, and the rest of the usual suspects would love it if international players were restricted and it was basically the same teams in the sweet 16 year after year but that wouldn't be too much fun for the rest of college tennis world who was fighting over the girls ranked 50 and below. I am 100% for making sure that the best American kids have scholarships at the best American schools but I also understand where the other schools want to compete rather than just "settle" for signing 4-star players just to have Americans on their team.
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Old Jun 5th, 2009, 01:24 AM   #11
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Re: recruiting class rankings - 2009-2010

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Originally Posted by johnnytennis View Post
Northwesterns class is the best. Whats the story with the Florida coach. He has the sister last year in Borsanyi at Florida and she leaves for Baylor. Now he brings in the sister.
It is refreshing to see some of the top 20 schools in college tennis that are able to win with American players only.
Csilla and Brittany are not sisters. Not even releated. Csilla is from Hungary, Brittany is a Floridian.
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Old Jun 5th, 2009, 03:53 AM   #12
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Re: recruiting class rankings - 2009-2010

There is a difference between international players and international players that have been "PRO". The American girls can hold there own with international players, but the ones that have been pro makes it tough. There are players that coaches can't get into their school, but another school seems to get them in!?!?!?!? Go figure. It is true the level of play would go down, but is this college tennis or pro tennis. Right now it is college tennis with some pro players mixed in. I would like to see a limit put on schools. I don't see this ever happening.
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Old Jun 5th, 2009, 04:10 PM   #13
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Re: recruiting class rankings - 2009-2010

The admissions policies vary from school to school for internationals just like they do for Americans. Surely you don't expect Stanford to have the same admissions policy as Louisiana Tech. Some schools also don't require the TOEFL, which makes it a lot easier to get internationals in...and it also varies based on athletic departments and compliance departments and what some will and will not allow.

I agree with you on the pro stuff, but like I have said on here before, if the NCAA allows it - the end. There is no reason why a coach should set her moral compass to the right of the NCAA just based on some unwritten "moral code" about not recruiting pros. The bottom line is that if a coach recruits anything less than the best that the NCAA will allow, she is not doing the best job she can do as a coach. I DO have a problem with what the NCAA is currently allowing - Widjaja at Pacific is the top example, 180ish WTA...what a joke! At the same time why should the guy at Pacific NOT take her if the NCAA says its ok? The NCAA did the right thing with the age rule (no more 25 year-old Germans at Baylor) but it looks like they are going the OPPOSITE way with the amateurism. I think a lot of that is based on the fact that even Widjaja probably barely broke even, so its hard to call that a "pro"...but that kind of gets me to my real point:

As for American juniors being able to compete with international juniors that is simply not correct. American junior tennis is WAY behind (look at the results) and not coincidentally American pro tennis is way behind. After the Roddick/Blake/Williams sisters generation moves on, what do we have left? The internationals that are coming over here are the has-beens, not the up-and-comers. Where are our has-beens? Why are there no American "pros" in college? Megan Falcon for LSU is about the closest you get, but why aren't there more? The answer is that they don't exist, or at least not in enough numbers to make a difference, and that is exactly BECAUSE American tennis is so far behind.

At least by letting these internationals play college tennis we are forcing our domestic level to rise. But not for college being so competitive, Mallory Cecil would not even have gone to Duke. The international pros are the only ones that even gave her a run for her money! If it were just Americans and internationals with very limited pro experience Cecil wouldn't have wasted her time!!!

It would be a little silly for us to just ban everyone above a certain level from college tennis. I know that none of you guys mean this in a racist or xenophobic way, but it would be a lot like when blacks were banned from US pro/college sports many years ago. Sure people still enjoyed the sports but it was totally artificial - the best players were playing in Negro Leagues, etc. ALL sports flourished and the level of play increased dramatically when they were integrated. The "American college sports are for American kids" mentality is ignorant - it stands against everything that competition ought to stand for. Instead of excluding and artificially limiting the level of play we ought to instead be focusing on improving the level of American tennis.
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Old Jun 5th, 2009, 05:09 PM   #14
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Re: recruiting class rankings - 2009-2010

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Originally Posted by 10sE View Post
At least by letting these internationals play college tennis we are forcing our domestic level to rise. But not for college being so competitive, Mallory Cecil would not even have gone to Duke. The international pros are the only ones that even gave her a run for her money! If it were just Americans and internationals with very limited pro experience Cecil wouldn't have wasted her time!!!
3 of the 4 matches that Mallory lost were to fellow Americans (Gullickson, Cohen, and Tefft). Granted, both Cohen and Gullickson have significant pro experience, but your statement doesn't hold up here. She did lose to Mosolova as well. Although the international girls are an incredible force in the women's college game, I wouldn't say that they are dominating Americans in the way you make them out to be. Consider that the last 3 individual champions were American born and bred, as were 5 of the 7 before that. It's a touchy subject, but in my opinion, the game is only enhanced by the presence of international players who raise the level of competition and add more excitement.
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Old Jun 6th, 2009, 12:19 AM   #15
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Re: recruiting class rankings - 2009-2010

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Originally Posted by tucker1989 View Post
3 of the 4 matches that Mallory lost were to fellow Americans (Gullickson, Cohen, and Tefft). Granted, both Cohen and Gullickson have significant pro experience, but your statement doesn't hold up here. She did lose to Mosolova as well. Although the international girls are an incredible force in the women's college game, I wouldn't say that they are dominating Americans in the way you make them out to be. Consider that the last 3 individual champions were American born and bred, as were 5 of the 7 before that. It's a touchy subject, but in my opinion, the game is only enhanced by the presence of international players who raise the level of competition and add more excitement.
That's a good point.

You probably watched the best that the rest of the world has to offer in the college age range on TV these past 2 weeks at Roland Garros. My point, which I didn't state very clearly, is that if American tennis is going to be #1 again, we have to start with having our best 18 year-olds being able to handle international has-been pros that (with a few exceptions) never cracked the top 400. If you can't beat Maria Mosolova, career high 685 WTA 19 out of 20 times, then you're not going to be a top-50 player anytime soon. There are 10 players 20 or younger in the WTA top 50. We don't have a player under 20 or under in the top 100.

I would like to see high level D1 college tennis be a viable path to the pros like it used to be. Further limiting who can play is not going to aid that cause. I realize that there are people out there that would like college tennis to be truly amateur, but that's not realistic nor is it good for American tennis. Look at all of the other sports - football, basketball, baseball, track, golf, swimming - they are basically a minor league system for the pros...which is why we are so strong at all of those sports.
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