The Nebraska men's tennis team is set to kickoff its 2012 campaign as the Huskers head to Athens, Ga., for the Intercollegiate Tennis Association Kick-Off Weekend. The Georgia Bulldogs are serving as one of 15 hosts for the first round of the tournament. Both of the Huskers' matches will take place indoors at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex.
The No. 39 Huskers pod includes three other ranked teams in No. 4 Georgia, No. 34 Virginia Tech and No. 51 TCU. The Huskers first match will be on Sunday, Jan. 29 at 8 a.m. against Virginia Tech. Depending on the outcome of Nebraska's Sunday match along with the TCU-Georgia match, the Huskers will then faceoff against either No. 51 TCU or No. 4 Georgia on Monday, Jan. 30. The TCU match would be played at 8 a.m., while the Georgia match would begin at 1 p.m.
The Huskers are the No. 3 seed in the four team pod. Virginia Tech is No. 2 seed. The No. 1 seed in Georgia will face off against the No. 4 seed TCU in the first round.
The 15 teams to win both their matches at their respected host site will go on to play in Charlottesville, Va., at the ITA National Team Indoor Championship. The event will be at the Boar's Head Tennis Club on Feb. 17-20.
History with the Hokies
The last time the Huskers matched up against the Virginia Tech Hokies was on March 17, 2010 in Blacksburg, Va. No. 22 Virginia Tech defeated the No. 25 ranked Huskers, 5-2.
Huskers Return Nine Letterwinners
The Huskers will return nine letterwinners as they begin the 2012 season. Those nine honorees include: seniors Christopher Aumueller, Benedikt Lindheim, Drew Freeman, juniors Erick Sock, Andrew Stenger, Brandon Videtich, and sophomores Tom Blackwell, Sebastian Florczyk and Robert Schulze.
Huskers Have Two Singles Players and Two Doubles Teams Ranked
Nebraska has two singles players ranked in the ITA Top 75. Christopher Aumueller finished the 2011 season with a 14-11 record and opens the 2012 season ranked No. 41. The second Husker ranked is Benedikt Lindheim, who is ranked at No. 78. The Huskers' doubles team of Aumueller and Lindheim is ranked No. 7 and the duo of Robert Schulze and Andre Stenger are ranked No. 44.
Huskers Have Tough Schedule Ahead
The Huskers have a tough schedule ahead for the 2012 season as they enter their first year in the Big Ten Conference, as they are scheduled to play 17 teams that are ranked in the ITA Top 75. Of those 17 teams, nine of them are in the Big Ten. Two teams (No. 3 Ohio State and No. 4 Georgia) are in the top 5.
Huskers Move Up One Spot; Ranked No. 39
In the latest Intercollegiate Tennis Association Rankings released on Jan. 24, the Huskers moved up one spot to No. 39. The Huskers began the season ranked No. 40 in the ITA Rankings.
NU in the Rankings
Scouting the Virginia Tech Hokies
Virginia Tech is the No. 34 ranked team in the country as they return seven players from the 2011 squad. The Hokies have two singles players ranked in No. 50 Lukea Somen and No. 71 Lucus Oliveria. Their doubles team of Somen and Corrado Delg'Incerti Tocci is ranked at No. 51. This will be the Hookies first match of the season. Virginia Tech finished the 2011 season with a record of 15-12 and advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Virginia Tech is coached by Jim Thompson. This is his 14th season at the helm.
Scouting the Georgia Bulldogs
The Georgia Bulldogs are 1-0 after defeating Clemson, 7-0, this past weekend. The Bulldogs are ranked No. 4 in the nation and have four players ranked in the ITA National Singles Rankings. The four players are No. 3 Wil Spencer, No. 10 Sadio Doumbia, No. 26 Ignacio Taboada and No. 64 Hernus Pieters. All four won their matches this past weekend in straight sets. Georgia also has the No. 8 ranked doubles team that includes Spencer and Garrett Brasseaux along with the No. 9 ranked doubles team that includes Doumbia and Taboada. The Bulldogs face the Horned Frogs of TCU in the first round. Georgia's head coach is Manuel Diaz. This is his 24th season.
Scouting the TCU Horned Frogs
TCU's first match is Wednesday, Jan. 25 against the Islanders of Texas A&M Corpus Christi. The Horned Frogs open the season ranked No. 51 in the latest ITA rankings that were released on Jan. 24. TCU finished the 2011 season with a record of 13-13 and came in at No. 51 in the final ITA Rankings. The Horned Frogs return two letterwinners. TCU is coached by David Roditi, who's in his second year.
Follow the Huskers with Live Stats
Live stats will be available for the Huskers matches this weekend. If the Huskers play Georgia, there will be a live blog provided. The links are available at the top of the page.