Monday, May 30, 2011

Congratulations To Krajicek and Dadamo--NCAA Doubles Champions 2011

Austin Krajicek & Jeff Dadamo

Congratulations to Austin Krajicek and Jeff Dadamo who won the NCAA doubles crown today. They defeated Bradley Klahn and Ryan Thacher of Stanford 7-6, 6-3. Krajicek and Dadamo are truly an inspiration to all NCAA players and honor their institution well.

Congratulations guys!

A&M Duo Roars Into NCAA Finals

Austin Krajicek & Jeff Dadamo

The Texas A&M duo of Austin Krajicek and Jeff Dadamo rolled into the NCAA finals and will face the Stanford doubles team of Bradley Khlan and Ryan Thacher today. Good luck to the young aglets...

The NCAA tournament also featured a retirement by Michael Shabaz of Virginia in his semi-finals match with Steve Johnson of USC. Here is the account of the retirement from Zoo tennis:

The controversy began in the first set, with Johnson serving at 5-6, 30-40, a set point, and only the third break point of the match to date, with Shabaz having saved two in the previous game.

"We had a three, four ball rally and he hits a slice that I thought was clearly out, a couple of inches," said Johnson, who gestured in dismay after he returned the shot. "The referee on the line didn't call it, but the chair overruled it, which I felt was the right call, but I guess he feels differently, and most of the UVA people here feel differently."

Playing with a full complement of line judges for the first time, after the players had called their own lines through the quarterfinals with a chair to overrule clear mistakes, there was an adjustment to be made. Although both players adapted quickly to the change, the first set tiebreaker brought another controversial call, or lack of one, irritating Shabaz again. Serving at 5-4, Johnson hit a surprise kick first serve, which Shabaz didn't get back in play, giving Johnson two set points. On Johnson's next first serve, a flat one, Shabaz thought it was long, making no move to Johnson's return of his return. The chair umpire, Michael Standrod, called the score, game and first set to Johnson, while Shabaz pleaded his case. During the set break, Shabaz continued to discuss the failure of the chair to call a fault, especially since he had overruled on the previous set point.

"I couldn't tell you, it was close either way," Johnson said of his serve. "It's hard for me to tell. Peter (Smith, USC head coach), for what it's worth, told me it was good, whether he was just saying that because he's my coach, or because it was good, I don't know. But it's tough to see, it's tough conditions, but sometimes it doesn't go your way and you have to be ready for anything."

The second set started as the first had, with no break points and easy holds through the first five games. Serving at 2-3, 30-15, Shabaz hit a forehand wide, and on the next point Johnson came up with an audacious dipping cross court pass to make it 30-40. Shabaz missed his first serve, and as the ball came back to him he swatted at it, with some anger but not any visible emotion. Unfortunately for him, the ball left the stadium, and the chair called out point penalty, unsportsmanlike conduct, game Johnson. As both players walked to the bench, Shabaz approached Johnson and shook his hand, while Virginia head coach Brian Boland, who was watching from the stands, could be heard to shout, "No, Shaz, No." Shabaz put his racquet in his bag and walked off the court, while all 1500 fans, who had been treated to an extremely high-quality display of tennis to that point, sat in stunned silence.

"I'm not sure what happened," said Johnson. "He was just done. After the point penalty, hitting it out of the stadium, he just called it quits. I've never had that happen in a match in my life. He's a tough competitor, I'm just kind of confused about what happened."

Johnson was hardly the only one.

"I'm speechless," said USC head coach Smith, who said he had never seen a match end that way in his over 20 years of collegiate coaching. "I actually feel sorry for all those involved. Michael is a way better person than that, and that program's a way better program than that. There were some missed calls, but that's tennis, if you've got umpires or not. I've got a lot of text messages asking me what just happened."

Cavalier head coach Boland described himself as speechless, but went on to elaborate on his disappointment with the 23-year-old senior from Fairfax, Virginia.

"I would probably consider that the lowest point in my 15 years as a head coach. I'm in shock.'

Asked if he shared Shabaz's frustration with the chair umpire, Boland was blunt.

"You are never justified in quitting a tennis match, under any circumstances, no matter what the adversity," said Boland. "Whether we agree or disagree with the line calls, whether we're having the worst day of our lives. I've told my players that my entire coaching career and I'm in absolute shock."

Sunday, May 29, 2011

We Bid Farewell To One Of The Good Ones


It was announced over the weekend that Texas A&M would not be renewing the contract of their women's tennis coach, Bobby Kleinecke. Bobby has served as the women's tennis coach for the past 26 years and has always been one of the finest coaches in the conference.

Personally, I have worked with Bobby for the past 10 years and have always found him to be a man of integrity, fairness, and a friend of officials. He was animated, fun, and a joy to work with and will be missed. Hopefully Bobby will find another coaching position real soon; or, enjoy his retirement completely!

Thanks Bobby for the many wonderful memories of working with you and the A&M women's tennis team...

Thursday, May 26, 2011

First Day At The NCAA Individual Championships

The individual championships got off to a great start yesterday with some fantastic play and some stunning upsets.

The #2 seed (Alex Domijan from Virginia) was defeated in the first round by Pepperdine's Sebastian Fanselow and the #1 seed (Steve Johnson of USC) defeated Jeff Dadamo of A&M. SMU's Artem Baradach was also defeated in the first round by USC's Daniel Nguyen.

The highlight of the day came when Tulsa's Marcelo Arevalo was defaulted in his singles match with Virginia's Michael Shabaz. Seems that Arevalo was guilty of three audible obscenities and was rightfully defaulted.

Sounds like they are running a tight ship out there in California...

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Congratulations To The 2011 NCAA Champions

USC Men's Team
National Champions

University of Florida Women's Team
National Champions

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Is It Time For The New Band Era?

USC Pep Band at the NCAA's

Now that the Southern Cal and Stanford folks have brought their pep bands to the NCAA's do you think it is appropriate to do so at NCAA dual matches? Be sure to vote in the poll to the right...

Personally, I think it would lend itself to a great evening of fun and excitement. Of course they should only be able to play before the match, after the match, and during the break between doubles and singles but just think of the strands of "The Eyes of Texas", the Aggie War Hymn, Boomer Sooner, and whatever they sing in Waco rafting through the trees and in your hearts!

However, the thoughts would then turn to World Team Tennis and whether we should allow them to play during the points. Interesting thought... The Big 12 does not permit noise makers at their matches but they could attend the non-conference matches. SMU has a great band so I just imagine them playing while the Pony runs rampant.

Here are a few songs I might recommend for them to sing:

At University of Texas: "Precious Memories"
At A&M: "Victory in Jesus"
At OU: "The Land That Is Fairer Than Day"
At Baylor: "I Shall Not Be Moved" or "The Fight Is On"
At Texas Tech: "The Land of the Unclouded Day"
At Kansas State: "It Took A Miracle"
At Nebraska: "Thank God Almighty, I'm Free At Last"

Anything About This Article Make You Uncomfortable?

I ran across this article this morning and thought it might make for interesting reading on the blog. Just wondering if I am the only one a bit uncomfortable with some of the things I read in this article...

PARIS (AP)—Ryan Harrison of the United States has made it into the French Open, after all.

Harrison lost in qualifying but was the beneficiary when Benjamin Becker of Germany withdrew from the main draw because of a left elbow injury Tuesday. Now Harrison gets a chance to offset $2,100 in fines he received for racket abuse, unsportsmanlike conduct and an audible obscenity during qualifying.

Harrison was to face 2009 and 2010 French Open runner-up Robin Soderling on Tuesday.

Instead of trying to get a wild card into the tournament via a U.S. Tennis Association playoff, Harrison chose to go through qualifying in Paris. When a player withdraws from the tournament after the draw has been held, a loser in qualifying—known as a “lucky loser”—gets to move into the field.

Monday, May 23, 2011

A Few More Goodies From Stanford

They are having one great tournament out in Stanford! From all reports we get, the tennis is unbelievably good and everyone is having a great time (except for the losers...).

Here are a few little tidbits I hear through the vine:

* In the Baylor-North Carolina women's match, the NC player told the crowd, "in your face, m___ f____." The chair official did nothing but the referee did go up and warn the crowd.

* In the Baylor-Ohio State match, the OSU player hit the ball out of the stadium after he lost the first set. Seems that everyone in the facility saw the shot except for the chair official who was busy getting down from his chair and looking for the errant ball.

We'll keep you posted on any other updates. Wish we were all out there...

No Wonder They Complain About Us Officials

Since we are considered "public figures", we are open to criticism and sometimes it is actually valid. I usually turn a deaf ear when I hear about a Mother who is irate because an official overruled her 12 year old darling, but this email I received from a tournament player here in Texas deserved consideration. I deleted information that would tell you what town and tournament but it was in Texas and we need to listen...

"In my humble opinion (whatever that is worth to anybody) the officials in ______ could use a little more stringent training. I was playing in the _____________ tournament there today.

Since the tournament got rained out Friday p.m. (and delayed without my being aware of it - not to blame the director. He posted it on the website, I just didn't have access to it while I was driving) I had a chance to hang out & watch some matches. Footfaults were rampant. But I didn't observe or hear one footfault called. In fact, I went to one court & sat under the cabana. An official was about 10 feet away from me and about 15 feet from the court he was observing. The server was chronically footfaulting. No footfault called.

During my match, two courts away, a player dropped an "f' bomb loud enough for me (who at my age am aware that I am losing some of my hearing) to hear & probably audible enough to be heard by the other two courts on the other side of him and one or two courts behind us, not to mention all of the spectators. That I could see there was an official one court away from him facing him who just stood there. May have been others, just didn't notice them.

After my match, I remarked about my disappointment to my opponent. His reply was, the ______ officials have the attitude that they are going to stay off of the court. Only go on court when they are requested. In my opinion, the players and whomever is paying these officials is getting ripped off. (Forgive my being blunt)."

It does provide food for thought doesn't it?

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Little Quirks At The NCAA Championships

It is indeed difficult to blog much about the NCAA Championships since they are being held at Stanford University in California--but we do get some interesting observations from people at the tournament...

Here are a few from today:

* In the Tennessee-Georgia men's match the chair official called a first and a second serve footfault on the Tennessee player who was serving with the team score was 3-3, and the match score was 5-6 in the final set. Can't you just imagine what the Tennessee coach did at this point...

* Seems that the tournament referee is taking a very active role in this year's tournament including checking the credentials of every player on a team before permitting them to stand a court away to cheer on their teammates. Seems that the trainers and other team members who aren't on the roster don't qualify this year...

For your updates on the competition, check the following:

Friday, May 20, 2011

Vincennes University--2011 NJCAA Men's National Champions

2011 NJCAA Men's National Champions
Vincennes University

Head Coach of Vincennes University
Ron Albers

The men's national junior college tournament (NJCAA) ended in dramatic fashion today as Vincennes University from Indiana edged out Tyler Junior College on the last men's doubles final of the tournament.

Today's national championship is the first in the history of Vincennes University and their men and coach are to be congratulated on a great tournament!

Moving Into The Last Day of the NJCAA Tournament

What a great week we have had at the Men's National Junior College tournament here in Plano. We also held the Chair Academy in conjunction with the tournament on Monday and Tuesday so you can imagine what it is like to have 13 regular officials and then 14 Chair Academy officials along with their 5 instructors... Needless to say, we had an awesome time--and some great blog experiences!

Here are some of the tidbits from the week:

* One of our officials defaulted a doubles team for slamming their rackets to the ground--three times!

* One of our officials (who will remain nameless but is from Oklahoma of course...) had six overrules in a singles match and culminated with a game penalty and loss of match.

* One of our officials (who will remain nameless but his middle name is Colint) agreed with the out call by a player and then let the other player talk him into overruling the call. Needless to say, when we had two irate coaches and two even more irate players we ruled "official interference" and replayed the point.

* One official when asked to overrule said, "That was an ace," instead of "Correction, the ball was good." At least they were creative in their overrule.

* One of our very experienced officials (and the one who gave the above mentioned default) also correctly gave a code violation for audible obscenity. During the match one of the players asked this chair official what he was doing wrong on his serve so the official told him to spin the ball in deeper to the opponent's body (which he then did and finally won his serve). Then in a moment of joyous exultation the player ran by the chair and gave the official a high five. At least you can't say he wasn't creative... I did caution him that coaching is not one of his official duties.

Other than these exciting moments we also had some of the best tennis we have ever had, some of the greatest food cooked by Tom Wright, and some of the best fellowship we have ever had with our officials family.

Today's matches feature the finals of all six singles flights and three doubles flights. The tournament is neck and neck between Vincennes University and Tyler Junior College.

More updates coming after today is complete...

Sunday, May 15, 2011

The Sights & Sounds Of Norman, Oklahoma

There is no place quite like Norman, Oklahoma and the campus of the University of Oklahoma in the springtime--and for an NCAA regional tennis tournament...

The weekend started with a Texas victory over the University of Missouri at Kansas City followed by an exciting semi-final win by Tulsa over the University of Oklahoma (4-2).

After Friday's matches, our gracious host (Jim Lawson) took us out for supper and a great adventure through the rolling hills of Oklahoma. Seems that Jim's restaurant of choice was 30 miles west of Norman in some unnamed town! The restaurant was named Ken's Steak House and it was fantastic....

One of the highlights of the evening was our trip over hill and dale!

The highlight of the evening was seeing a different church about ever 1/4 mile! Some of the most famous ones were: "God's House" and "Ain't Ashamed of the Gospel Baptist Church."

"Three Stooges Minus One"

Of course our weekend in Norman wouldn't be complete without the appearance of the "Three Stooges Minus One." This great trio was mentioned earlier this year on the blog but now consists of only the infamous Jim Lawson and Dean Richardville. It is minus one since one of the stooges couldn't handle the heat of tennis officiating and has left the group.

The weekend culminated with an upset of the University of Texas by Tulsa University (4-3). Congratulations to the Hurricanes and may you do well at the NCAA tournament!

Monday, May 09, 2011

Men's National Junior College Tournament Coming Soon!

Pictured above are some NJCAA officials. From left to right are: Lee Ann Bain, Gary Tolbert, Myron Krueger, Vickie Wright, and Tom Wright.

One of the highlights for the officials are the luxurious accomodations in Randy's tent. We feature drinks, snacks, and hamburgers, hot dogs, and sausages cooked by our own chef, Tom Wright.

Pictured above is one of our world-famous sausages as it was smuggled on court to Myron Krueger.

One of the highlights of our year here in Plano is the Men's National Junior College Tennis Tournament. This year's tournament will be held at Collin College on May 16-20, 2011, and will feature the top junior college players in America.

The tournament also features the 2011 Chair Academy which will be held on May 15-17, at the same location.

The NJCAA tournament has grown substantially over the past 10 years and now features not only the finest players but also chairs every match throughout the tournament.

Even if you're not officiating, come and join us for some great tennis next week!

Saturday, May 07, 2011

2011 Chair Academy

This year's Chair Academy will be held in conjunction with the Men's National Junior College Tournament which begins on May 16th. The Academy features some of the finest instructors in America and lots of on-court training for the officials.

Here is a list of this year's participants:

Jim Alford (Austin)
Britt Bilberry (Lubbock)
Mark Burns (Austin)
Ira Jamshidi (Austin)
Annie Jenkins (Houston)
Bob Kent (Houston)
Rob Kraijicek (Houston)
Ty McDonald (Metroplex)
Denise Offerdahl (Austin)
Richard Reasor (Waco)
Mary Stang (Houston)
Kim Temple (Metroplex)
Robert Tabor (Metroplex)
Deborah Weinstein (Denver)


Bruce Avery
Joe Buys
John Haury
Ginny James
Cheryl Jones
Roz Tuerk

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Panties Are In A Wad So Its Time To Temper The Comments

As human beings, we sometimes manage to get our "panties in a wad."

In my desire to allow freedom of speech and ideas on the blog by allowing nearly all comments, I think its time for us to slow down a bit and temper our comments somewhat. It seems that we moved from the announcement of the regional pairings to a lot of unnecessary comments so I have deleted all comments from that post and will not add any more on that subject.

A blog is an avenue for open exchange of opinions and ideas and comments on those same things. I have recently had people tell me that they wanted to censor every comment--but then who will be the ultimate censor if I permit something to be printed that they disagree with. Not all comments are going to be loving and affirming so if you don't like that, then don't read the blog...

As tennis officials we in a sense are public officials and are open to public opinion and scrutiny. People are going to have their opinions of our public job performance--and rightly so. We live in America and there is freedom of speech. This blog will continue to confront wrongs, lies, inuendos, violations of rules and at the same time offer an avenue for sharing stories and having input about rules questions. That's what the blog is for...

Let me also remind you that if you come on this blog and write a comment that attacks everyone who reads it and comments on here, then be prepared for the backlash. You can't have it both ways...

I hope you understand where I am coming from. I love having this blog and feel like its a lot of fun for a lot of people. Let's don't let a few comments ruin our enjoyment.

Note: A special thanks to all who read and comment. You make it all worthwhile. Keep up the good work!

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

How Would You Rule?

Here is a great scenario right out of the Mountain West Men's Conference Tournament:

Mountain West Conference Championships last Sat at Air Force Academy, TCU v. BYU men FINAL BYU server hits a first serve and it hits the tape and flies up in the way was it landing in the service box. While ball is air borne, the TCU coach catches it and he was standing in his proper designated place on court for coaching.

How would you rule:

1. Loss of point for TCU for TCU Coach interfering with flight of served ball.

2. Let, replay the point (receiver had a play on the serve, but for TCU coach catching it)

3. Second Serve

4. Official coaches warning for catching a live ball.

5. Let, replay the point for Official Coach Interference with play.

SPECIAL NOTE: The referee ruled #3 but then gave them a let because the officials took so long to make the ruling.

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

NCAA Regionals Announced

The NCAA announced their men's and women's pairings for this year's tournament. Listed below are the regionals that apply to Texas and Oklahoma:

Men's Division

Host: Texas A&M
Alcorn State

Host: Baylor
A&M Corpus Christi
Texas Tech

Host: Oklahoma

Women's Division

Host: Baylor
Cal Poly

Host: Texas A&M
Florida State
Southern University

Host: Miami, Florida
South Florida

Monday, May 02, 2011

The Case Of The Elusive Baylor Shoe--How Would You Rule?

Baylor player losing his shoe in a 3rd set tiebreak.

One of the highlights of the Big 12 tournament was what I will call the "Case of the Elusive Baylor Shoe." I'll give you the facts, let you know how we ruled, and then open it up for comments and thoughts...


I (Randy McDonald) was the referee for the match between Baylor and Oklahoma. The match was tied 3-3 and it came down to the #6 singles match. We were in a tie break in the third set.

During a point the Baylor player lost his shoe (see the above picture) and then made an effort to play the point. He did return the ball over the net and the Oklahoma player put the ball away.


After consulting with the chair official who told me that she did not see the shoe come off but that she did see the player continue to play the point, I ruled that the point was over at that point and awarded it to the Oklahoma player. The basis for my decision was that a referee cannot overrule in a question of fact (only in a question of law), so I stood with the decision of the chair official.


This scenario is filled with numerous questions, thoughts, and options and here are a few:

1. If the chair official had seen the shoe come off, what should she have done?

2. Since the chair official stated what she had seen, should the referee have overruled her decision and called a "hindrance--replay the point"?

3. Should the Baylor player immediately stopped play and called a let on himself?

4. Should the Oklahoma player have stopped play when he saw the shoe come off and called a let?

We would welcome you thoughts and opinions on this one. I'll give you a hint: there is no complete agreement among the highest ranking officials in the USTA.

Sunday, May 01, 2011

Big 12 Champions!

2011 Big 12 Men's Champions

The Texas A&M men's tennis team swept through the competition to claim the 2011 Big 12 Championship this weekend in Waco, Texas. A&M defeated Texas 4-0 in the semifinals and then beat Oklahoma 4-0 in the finals.

Congratulations to Coach Steve Denton and his team!

2011 Big 12 Women's Champions

The Baylor women's tennis team beat Texas 4-1 today to capture the Big 12 Women's Championship. The title this year makes the 6th consecutive year that the Baylor women have won the conference title.

Congratulations to Coach Joey Scrivano and his ladies team for the championship!

COMING TOMORROW: A few blog posts on some great scenarios that happened during the Big 12 tournament. You will love them!