After an impressive season and an NCAA Tournament berth this past season, Head Coach Whitehead should be ecstatic for the talent he has coming in with this year’s recruiting class.
Coach Whitehead and assistant coach Michael Breler, have secured the #15 ranked recruiting class in the Class of 2021. This is the program’s first nationally ranked recruiting class. This was a season of many firsts for Whitehead and the team as they finished the 2021 season ranked in the Top 25 for the first time in five years coming at #24. The Men’s Tennis Team clinched a berth in the NCAA tournament and secured a win over Virginia Tech in the first round.
This was already an extremely talented team as Franco Ribero and Parker Wynn ranked #45 in the Final Men’s Tennis Doubles Team National Rankings. The Red Raiders will look to hopefully bring back 5/8 players with Ribero only being a junior. But despite losing three guys, they are certainly getting help in their new recruits.
Their recruiting class will include Takeyasu Sekiguchi, who is a 5-Star prospect coming in from the elite Weil Tennis Academy in Ojai, California. He had an overall record this past season of 28-19, including an 8-4 record over other 5-star recruits. He comes in as the 63rd National Player in the country. Sekiguchi was ranked even as high as #20. Red Raider fans should be excited to see this kid in Lubbock over the next few years and how much he can develop under Whitehead into a great player.
The next one is Sebastian Abboud, who is an international player from Sweden. He ranks #253 in the ITF (International Tennis Federation) rankings. Abboud finished with a 19-6 record last season overseas. He won two Juniors Singles Titles in 2020. At one point he was ranked as the #2 Under-18 player in Sweden. He was a national champion in doubles and a national team champion. So, he definitely has had a lot of success overseas and I think he will be a great addition to next year’s team.
Tech also got a commitment from another international player from Poland player Piotr Pawlak. Pawlak was the 18 and over champion of the Polish National Tournament and secured two ITF singles titles and five ITF doubles titles. He was ranked #239 in the ITF Jr. Ranking and is currently ranked #2,529 in Pro Rankings.
The last is a transfer from UNC-Charlotte Transfer Olle Wallin. In his first season at UNC Charlotte, Wallin competed primarily in the number one singles slot and finished the season with eight wins and only one loss. Wallin has also seen success in the international competition and has been a two-time semifinalist on the ITF Junior World Tour and earning one ATP point. He has an ITA singles high rank of #64. This is a huge transfer for Tech because, Wallin was very successful in the Conference USA and should add depth and experience to this team, and should fit in quite well with this roster.
Coach Whitehead and Coach Berler should be really excited about this recruiting class and what they bring to the table. This is great for future recruiting classes for Whitehead as it shows he can bring in top-talent players in the country and internationally. The future of the Red Raiders Men’s Tennis Team and is in great hands and should be a program to watch on the rise come next season and in the Big 12 and compete for a championship.