USTA Player Development National Headquarters to Move from Key Biscayne, Fla. to Boca Raton
New Facility to Include Dorm-Style Living Quarters, State-of-the-Art Fitness Center, Full Training Facility, and Access to 23 Tennis Courts on Multiple Surfaces
>Quotes from USTA President Franklin Johnson, Chris Evert, Billie Jean King, Patrick McEnroe and more regarding the new partnership
WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. -- The USTA has announced a new alliance with the Evert Tennis Academy in Boca Raton, Fla., to provide year-round housing for top junior players for the first time, launching a new era in the program’s mission to develop the next generation of American tennis champions. Working with the USTA, the Evert Academy will construct a new on-site facility that will serve as the national headquarters for USTA Player Development. The USTA is expected to move its national headquarters from Key Biscayne, Fla., to the Evert Tennis Academy by (September) 2007.
As part of the new arrangement, the USTA will for the first time offer player housing for promising young players aged 14-18. Plans for the facility call for a three-level building that will include dorm-style living arrangements a state-of-the-art fitness center, classrooms, offices and a conference facility.
The Evert Tennis Academy is run by Chris Evert and John Evert, and features 23 tennis courts, including 14 clay courts and 9 hard courts, with 14 courts lighted for night play. The USTA Athletic Training staff will have access to training rooms at all times, and the facility will feature a state-of-the-art video lounge.
The new player housing program is designed to serve as an adjunct to private coaching for players that meet certain criteria. Those players housed on-site will have access to a variety of different schooling options, including nearby public and private schools. The players in the USTA housing program will also be provided with food service and a nutrition program developed by USTA staff.
The USTA will continue to support players currently working with private coaches or academies through other components of the Player Development program, including wild cards, grants and camps.
“This new partnership with the Evert Academy, which will include year-round housing, will better fulfill our mission to offer top prospects the best opportunities to succeed, while we continue to work with the established tennis academies throughout the country,” said Franklin Johnson, Chairman of the Board and President, USTA. “We are clearly entering a more competitive environment for developing world class tennis players, and it is our responsibility as the national governing body of the sport to build the next generation of U.S. champions.”
“I am thrilled to welcome the USTA to our world-class facility,” said Chris Evert, five-time US Open champion and co-owner of the Evert Tennis Academy. “The Evert Academy continually searches for ways to give back to young tennis players to support this great sport, and we couldn’t be happier to be part of this grand new era in young player development.”
“This new approach to player development will provide more opportunities for more young players who may not have had access to this level of training in the past,” said Billie Jean King, Chair, USTA Player Development Committee. “It doesn’t get any better than having a friend and icon such as Chris Evert as an inspiration for our future stars.”
“We are very excited about what this new partnership will mean for our player development efforts,” said Paul Roetert, Managing Director, USTA Player Development. “This move creates the best scenario for us to be able to capitalize on all the best resources available - - an exceptional facility, year-round housing, state-of-the-art fitness center and a competitive environment.”
The U.S. led all nations with 16 boys in the 2005 year-end ITF world junior rankings, with Australia and the Czech Republic second with six each. On the girls’ side, the U.S. finished with 11 in the top 100, second only to Russia’s 13.
USTA Player Development is charged with providing American junior, collegiate and young professional players with the opportunities to reach their maximum potential. Its three departments - - Coaching Education (including Sport Science), High Performance, and Junior and Collegiate Competition - - work together towards this common goal.