Follow the happenings of an animated college tennis coach and his teams in their pursuit of an NCAA National Tennis Championship. It is always the impressive trophy that is displayed for all to admire that gets the attention, but it is the journey to claiming that trophy, the relationships built, the people served and the memories created, that live forever...and what I hope you will find interesting...
If you believe in the power of prayer, put you hands together as the team is scheduled to fly to Florida tomorrow 2/27 at 8am. A quick check of the weather in Saint Augustine, FL reveals temps only in the high 50's and low 60's, which is below normal for this time of the year. However, I can't complain as I would rather swing a tennis racquet and not a snow shovel.
I can only hope that the good folks at Jet Blue will have the ability to get us on a plane and in the air to our destination. With any good fortune, I will be in the jacuzzi at this time tomorrow. Woo hoo.
The Clippers will take the court for the first time this season, today 2/21/2010, versus NCAA I Monmouth University. First serve is scheduled for 2pm.
Check back during the match for live updates...
#1 Alex Grubin / Andrey Boldarev CC def. Laurence Heads / David Sherwood MU 8-3
#2 Tamas Dobrotka / Andreas Lindell CC def. Harvey Bhalla / Oliver Grimbly MU 8-2
#3 Felix Missal / Raphael Namias CC def. MU by default
Concordia leads 3-0 after the doubles. Order of finish (3,2,1).
#1 Dobrotka CC def. Heads MU 6-3, 1-0 ret.
#2 Namias CC def. Sherwood MU 6-3, 6-0
#3 Missal CC def. Bhalla MU 6-1, 6-3
#4 Lindell CC def. Ben Dashiell MU 6-1, 6-2
#5 Dane Ostilly CC def. Grimbly MU 6-0, 7-6 (11-9)
#6 Shaolin Chandam CC def. MU by default
Order of finish (6,1,3,4,2,5)
Match score 9-0 Concordia
Season record 1-0
Congratulations to the entire Grubin family as Alex's brother Mirko and wife were recently blessed with the arrival of a baby girl. Zoja Grubin was born at 8 pounds, 2 ounces and is reportedly doing well.
Alex is very excited about the new edition to the family and will now be introduced in the lineup as Uncle Alex Grubin.
Hola! Making the extreme sacrifice, I have traveled south to the island of Puerto Rico and am staying in San Juan. Of course, as far as the IRS is concerned, I make this trip to search out the best prospective student athletes to fortify my team for next season. Yeah sure, a deductible recruiting trip, wouldn’t that be swell.
Of course, I know that the team is happy as Coach Tarangioli has taken over the conditioning sessions. In his advanced age, the "kinder and gentler" Coach Neil has emerged and is quite a bit softer on the fellas than yours truly. In any event, the fitness program, laden with plyometric drills and a heck of a lot of running, is just what we need to escalate our conditioning to a level comparable with the top teams in the nation.
Time sure flies. It is already approaching mid February. It is hard to believe that many of the southern teams will begin their slate this week. This, of course, is quite a disadvantage to us as they are able to play in the out-of-doors while we are not able to do so until we arrive in Florida for our spring trip...just two days prior to our first match versus the number two squad in the country, Barry University.
It is truly an exciting time for a new team equipped with several new players from many lands. It has been quite enjoyable to see the group bond together, and also, to witness their progress on the court.
A few items of note:
We will travel down to Queens College on Friday, 2/19 to see our friend Coach Schwartz and his players for a pre-season festival of tennis. We have been competing in practice against ourselves but it will be good for the players to get some sets in with another team. Also, we have our season and home opener scheduled for Sunday, 2/21 versus Monmouth College, with the action scheduled to begin at 2pm. The Clippers were able to coast past the Muhawks, coached by my old college foe, Mickey Cook, last season 7-0. As the superbowl will mark the completion of the NFL season this Sunday, 2/7, I expect that you all will have plenty of Sunday time to stop by the Meyers Tennis Center and support the team. Hope to see you there.
I got involved with Concordia Tennis as a way to honor my parents who were both professors and coaches at the college back in the 1960's and also to give back to the program that provided so much for me.
I started with a dream of taking a team to the National "Sweet 16". However, once we got there and I saw what it took to win a National Championship, it looked possible and that became my goal. I thought for a long time that I must have one. However, over time, I realized that it is more important to focus on building champions rather than winning championships and that relationships are far more important than achievements. Thus, a stronger purpose became clear. I am here to love, serve, care for and lead my teams...
"I came to realize that life lived to help others is the only one that matters, and that it is my duty, in return for the lavish life God has devolved upon me, to help others he has placed in my path." - Ben Stein
"You are never really playing an opponent. You are playing yourself, your own highest standards, and when you reach your limits, that is real joy." - Arthur Ashe
“One man practicing sportsmanship is far better than fifty preaching it.” - Knute Rockne
“If what you did yesterday seems big, you haven't done anything today.” - Lou Holtz
"The harder you work, the harder it is to surrender." - Vince Lombardi
"The fewer rules a coach has, the fewer rules there are for players to break." - John Madden
"Intelligence plus character - that is the goal of true education." - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr
"Success is a journey, not a destination." - Arthur Ashe
"Champions keep playing until they get it right." - Billie Jean King
"Do you know what my favorite part of the game is? The opportunity to play." - Mike Singletary
"Don't let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do." - John Wooden
"The day you take complete responsibility for yourself, the day you stop making any excuses, that's the day you start to the top." - O.J. Simpson
"It's what you learn after you know it all that counts." - John Wooden
"Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail." - Ralph Waldo Emerson
"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit." - Aristotle
"If you want to be good, focus on making yourself better. If you want to be great, focus on making yourself and your team better." - Jon Gordon