Florida Names Bryan Shelton Men's Tennis Head Coach

(Photo by Jamie Howell, via Wikipedia.)

Florida's spates of association with other non-rival schools — Ohio State, UCLA, Butler — are always weird and almost entirely random. Here's another one: Just days after Florida's baseball team crushed Georgia Tech to advance in the 2012 NCAA Tournament, the new Gators men's tennis coach, Bryan Shelton, comes to Florida from Atlanta. Shelton will replace Andy Jackson, who resigned in May.

Scott Carter's got an excellent profile of Shelton, which details his circuitous path to tennis coaching: An ATP player from the end of his collegiate career at Georgia Tech until 1997, Shelton won two titles, and became the first black player to win an ATP singles title since Arthur Ashe in 1991, then turned to coaching, where he built a Georgia Tech women's program that won the national title in 2007, the school's only NCAA team title, and was a perennial ACC contender.

Shelton will look to improve on Jackson's tenure, in which his Gators teams were usually solid but only rarely SEC and national championship contenders. Jackson's No. 12 Gators fell in the Round of 16 in the 2012 NCAA Tournament, and no Gators made it out of the second round of the NCAA Singles and Doubles Championships.

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