Hey everyone. So, it’s been a while for me and articles and tweeting, which I am sure is disappointing the fans at large. I blame this on AVZ for getting me distracted about alternate currencies and I also blame RegNEC for not telling me a Snack of the Week every week. I blame NewD3Central and DIIIWest for not carrying the blog in my absence even though that is a totally unreasonable request for two new guys. At least they aren’t in the group chat yet. And of course, I blame NE for his existence, because he has become an extremely demotivating presence in my life. His fantasy team this week started Andy Dalton and Desean Jackson. Does that not demotivate you? That’s what I thought.
Anyways, instead of providing you a recap of all things ASouth, I think I’ll do things a little bit differently. I’m going to do something different. I know this always happens and it’s probably because I’m as extra as Tyra Banks on America’s Next Top Model, but I like to think these articles are exciting. I’ll basically go stream of consciousness on random topics from across the country, whether they be related to my ASouth teams or not. I’ll try to keep things ASouth heavy, but my love for Williams may trickle in there in a few paragraphs. I’ll try and also ask a few questions so you as the readers can answer them – I’m tired of hearing NE talk about the NESCAC every time I ask a question in the group chat. Lastly, I’ll finish up with a W2W4 from the Blog this winter. Ya dig?
Hey Emory, I don’t want to hear it.
The other week, I wrote about Emory’s ITA and how they dominated. I basically said they were the greatest team ever. I got comments in the article complaining about me doing the following things:
- Not mentioning freshman All American Will Wanner, who won the doubles portion of the tournament
- Not explicitly saying that Jonathan Jemison won the singles portion even though he went to Small College Nationals
Look bros, if you’re looking to hang my articles on your fridge for your parents to look at it every time they bag your PB&J sandwich every morning, then let me know. I’ll tweet it for you once a week. Seriously though, you guys get mad praise pretty much every article from me and also are the defending champions. I’ve been doing this thing long enough to know what’s good. I called your national championship last year. You guys aren’t the favorites this year in the eyes of most of the fans. Don’t waste your breath looking for your name to be in bold in one of my articles. Y’all got this.
Speaking of Emory, they had a damn good fall.
I talked about this already in the ITA recap, but the Emory singles lineup could be absolutely loaded. Now, is it going to be better than Middlebury’s? Probably not. But, that lineup is probably second best in the nation with national championship experience from last year. To be honest, this is one of the better chances that we have a defending champion actually defend their title at the end of the year. Speaking of the DOUBLES, obviously the win by Wanner/Bouchet at ITAs is awesome, but I have been taught not to put too much weight in the doubles small college results. Too many times have I seen a winning team not perform all that well during the season, or not even play #1 doubles (such as Rafe/Jemison). Not to say the team isn’t good – but to me the more likely scenario is that Wanner/Bouchet end up playing a really strong #2 instead of #1. Expect Spaulding/Rubinstein at #1, especially coming off their win at the Grizzly Open, which is pretty damn awesome. WE SHOULD BE TALKING ABOUT THAT! That leaves Jemison and some lucky soul at #3 doubles, which is exactly what Coach Browning wants. Either way, Emory doubles will be strong this year, but there are still a lot of questions about who goes where. It should be interesting and I would be surprised if something isn’t moved around for spring.
Anyways, since I am a homer, I have Emory pegged as my #1 team in Power Rankings. Don’t @ me, bro.
Can someone tell me wtf is going on with Carnegie Mellon?
So, I’ve basically focused all my CMU talk on either the greatness of Daniel Levine or the absence of three key players on the team. It’s time to talk about those absences even more, because when there is smoke there is fire. And CMU has got more smoke than any of the major Chinese cities (shoutout to climate change). OK – we did not see any of Vayum Arora (#1 dubs, #5-6 singles last year), Michael Rozenvasser (#2 singles, #2 doubles last year), or Mark Prettyman (moral support, key backup) this whole fall. That’s certainly not a good thing. One of those players is not even on the roster right now (Arora), which doesn’t bode well for his chances of playing in the spring. I’ve heard nothing on Prettyman, who didn’t factor much into last year’s performance, but either way it’s still a loss. The big news, however, is that of Mike Rozenvasser. There seems to be a decent chance that Rozenvasser is no longer on the team based on comments we’ve received on the site and some rumblings from other players who happen to know the damn guy. And when I say no longer on the team, I mean that he may have pulled a Michael Razumovsky and chosen the uhhh… just chosen a different path instead of tennis. Which, at the end of the day, is his choice. But hell, that’s a low blow for the CMU team if that is true.
So, how will this affect CMU in the future if all three of these guys do not play in the Spring?
This is what happens. I don’t need to say anymore than that. That result is the equivalent to the result of a team ranked like #20 in the nation. Just sayin.
Congratulations Mike Belmonte on your well-deserved promotion to head men's tennis coach at Carnegie Mellon University. A historic day for Carnegie Mellon Tennis. #breakingplaidnewshttps://t.co/2B9EE0TMx2
— CMU Tennis (@cmutennis) November 11, 2017
Wow! I literally never get coaching news in my region, as all four of my coaches have been with their teams for over 10 years, which is more than the amount of time I’ve been blogging. I would like to congratulate Coach Belmonte on his promotion, and also the CMU Tennis program for finally getting a separate head coach for the Men’s and Women’s sides. We’ve seen how challenging it is for a coach to coach both (despite the success of Tee, Fried, and Girard). I believe no championship coach has ever coached both the men’s and women’s at the same time, at least in the past 10 years or so. Correct me if I am wrong! Either way, elevating Coach Belmonte to the helm could either prove to be very interesting – I am excited to see what this means for CMU, if anything.
Literally no one knows anything about Hopkins, not even my Hopkins insider
Hopkins is almost always an enigma, but this year seems different than most years. Most years, I am extremely positive about their end of year outlook, even when they lose to random teams like Franklin and Marshall in the regular season (they never actually did that I am just embellishing). But like I said in my ITA article, something seems to be missing from Hopkins this year. Two years ago, they had a quality captain in Nick Garcia to get them over the hump at the end of the year. Last year, they had a cause to play for in #AllInForMike, and a quality #1 in senior Jeremy Dubin to lead them as well. This year, I don’t really know what I’m going to be getting from a hodge podge of solid holdovers and talented freshmen. Hopkins has always made it happen at the end of the year, but with them not making the Elite 8 last year, this next year seems like another logical step down. Their ITA performance showed that, but this is a long season. Freshmen can be so boom or bust that it would be foolhardy of me to make a judgement on the Hopkins season right now. So, in due time, we will find out what Hopkins is made of.
Let’s take a quick trip around the nation!
Teams that have Impressed me this Fall
Now, I’m going to leave most of the analysis to the regional writers to take their awesome teams, but I do want to make sure I say a few things about the teams that have really caught my eye this year. I’d like to start off by commending Williams and Brian Grodecki. As much as I have hated on Williams the past two or three years, I will love them just as much this year. I am the only blogger to rank Williams as #4 in the Power Rankings (no other bloggers rankings matter) and that means something. Williams has the aura this year and I will leave it at that. Another team that I’ve been trying to hype since the end of last year is that of Gustavus Adolphus. They are going to make noise. A team that breaks through with a top 10 win will normally continue on with some success. A breakthrough win is called a breakthrough for a reason. The rich get richer, and those that have big win experience will build on that. They have home court at indoors and have some extremely juicy matchups, the first one potentially being CMU in the first round of consolation. GAC gonna make some noise. Another team to watch out for is Redlands (can’t believe I said that), who are adding what seems to be a stud in the younger Krimbill along with a top player in Lipscomb. While I don’t think Redlands is going to make it via Pool C, they could certainly destroy a NESCAC’s team season. With a few teams looking weaker, who knows – Redlands can be a team to watch out for. I’d also of course like to shoutout Chicago, who has 4 individual players in the top 8 in the region without Chua and Liu, which is downright ridiculous. But, as Coach Tee always says, @ me in May.
ITA Sucks at Spelling
I try and refrain from throwing people completely under the bus like Lindsay Lohan in Mean Girls, but seriously, the ITA needs to spell the names in the rankings correctly. NE said something that I totally agree with – “We all make mistakes here and there, but the spelling here is totally atrocious.” These are kids names for god’s sake. When two players are on the court, you ask what their names are. It kind of defines their life. No one has called me anything but ASouth my whole life and it’d kind of be disappointing if someone spelled that wrong while trying to commend my performance on something. Seriously, “Arthur Fugundes?” The dude has been playing for 4 effing years. It took the ITA the better portion of a year to fix Scott Rubinstein’s name. I mean, AVZ still spells “Krimbill” as “Krimball,” but he’s old, it’s okay. That’s why we shifted him to podcasts. ITA ranking peeps, you may not like me, but spell the god damn names right. Seriously. It’s not like you released them 6 days later than you said and didn’t have the time either. Also, I normally capitalize the last name when I write people’s names. That’s just 1st grade grammar. Seriously if you don’t care, we’ll do the rankings. We care.
Mary Washington dubs won a nice match at Small College Nats!
Basically everyone other than me picked UMW to finish last at Small College Nationals and they proved everyone wrong! Mary Washington was able to pick up a big win over the CMS doubles team to cement their All-American status (it feels better when you win one at Small College), giving the Eagles some nice momentum going into the Spring Season. Don’t get me wrong, I think this is going to be a tough year for UMW, but they are showing some glimmers of hope after taking some major hits the past two years with players getting kicked off and just a general lack of winning. Maybe we will be able to look back on this year as a milestone year for this team to start turning it around with team culture and camaraderie. It’s important, you know.
There are too many NE Fall Tournaments
This is just a random thought, but there are so many fall NE tournaments. That means the equivalent of about 100 pages of writing from D3NE about why NESCAC is awesome and that freshman from Wesleyan is the best thing since sliced bread. Yea, you can see how it gets a bit redundant after a little while. As much as I hate D3NE getting the spotlight, we do get to see a lot of the newcomers in the NE really early, so we can judge the hell out of them and see if they are up to par. It’s kinda fun, I guess. But, I’d love if we could bring back that old tradition of Amherst traveling down to play two of my best teams, CMU and Hopkins. Now that would be fun. Always was.
So, the blog has been a bit dormant this fall as we integrate some new writers and also just enjoy our 11th year blogging. It’s been a great run so far and who knows, maybe we’ll get 11 more. The comments keep pouring in and I actually got to meet Matt Heinrich the other day. The blog is alive and well, don’t let anyone tell you that the Blog is dead. We prove it come springtime. Anyways, here are some things to expect in the next coming weeks/months as the fall season is over.
Season Previews – As we do every year, we will be completing Season Previews for all the teams that we cover. The top 40 will certainly get its dues and each and every one of those teams will get a Season Preview. More teams will probably get previews, simply because D3RegionalNEC cannot control himself, but maybe he will make up for the newbies lack of articles going on (ooooooooo0o0oooooooo0oo0ooo). Stay tuned for some Season Previews starting next week.
The Recruiting Hub – The HUB has taken a backseat to some of our fall coverage, but we will now come back with more and more profiles in the winter. The Guru needs to get on his game and get some profiles out there, while we need to get on our games and kick him in the ass. We have the newbies working some new profiles as well, so things should really get interesting! If you have questions, email me at my regular email as always.
Fantasy Draft! – I am excited to say that the THIRD ANNUAL Fantasy Draft will again take place this winter. This year, we have 10 participating bloggers, which makes for an all blogger draft where scrubs like Dante Quazzo don’t have to join and muck things up. JK, love you Quaz. As you all know, the fantasy draft is a DIII Tennis Nerds (RIP) dream, where we draft our own teams based on individual performance and projected spots in the lineup. We also always have an epiphany about how many players we know and it’s kind of sad. But it’s okay, because it’s entertaining. Expect the fantasy draft to come out sometime in Dec/January.
Other Ideas – If you guys have any other ideas for the blog in the spring, shoot me an email. We have our normal spring coverage going as always, but we love new blood and ideas. The new guys NewD3Central and DIIIWest both have brought a few ideas already and we’re gearing up for a great spring season!
It bothers me every time to tell you I am concluding an article, but I do it anyways. I’ll change that eventually. Anyways, I hope you enjoyed this ASouth focused recap article with a little bit of national level analysis thrown in there and a shot at the ITA. Here’s a GIF similar to how I’m feeling right now.
I’ll see you next week for season previews or this weekend for some newbie recap articles, if they ever get on that shit. ASouth, OUT.