John Roddick, Director of Tennis at the University of Central Florida, has coached in the junior academy space and the pro ranks but has spent the majority of his coaching career in the college coaching world. Roddick’s first collegiate coaching jobs were as assistants at Florida State (1999-2000) and Georgia (2000-02). During his two-year stint with Georgia, the Bulldogs won the national championship (2001) and finished as runners-up (2002).
During his time as the head men’s coach at the University of Oklahoma, he led the team to three consecutive NCAA finals, winning Big 12 titles and many other awards along the way. He is now in the process of attempting to build a similar list of accomplishments at UCF.
He was named the UCF Director of Tennis on May 29, 2016. He serves as the men’s head coach with oversight of both the men’s and women’s programs.
In this podcast, John discusses how he went about building the program at Oklahoma and provides advice to coaches as to what they should prioritize when taking over a program, how to build upon any early successes they may enjoy, and lots of other great insights.
Key parts of this conversation have been minute-marked for your listening convenience:
- 01:17 – Why did you choose to start your college tennis coaching career after graduating?
- 02:30 – What about college coaching did you enjoy the most?
- 03:46 – Why did it make sense for you to step away and become an ATP coach?
- 06:12 – Do you regret the decision to step into professional coaching?
- 06:48 – Did your time away from the college game change the way you view player development? What lessons did you take away from those experiences?
- 09:13 – Is there anything about the recruiting process that you’d like to share with coaches – tips or advice?
- 11:29 – What are some behaviors that you look for when recruiting?
- 13:03 – What do you believe you brought to the program at Oklahoma to help take them to the quarterfinals in your first year?
- 16:40 – How can a coach ensure that they capitalize on any success they have early in their tenure?
- 19:49 – Do you think the job changes in any way to sustain success or do you continue to grind away?
- 22:26 – What advice do you have for coaches on what they should prioritize in their first three months on the job?
- 24:15 – How did you develop an understanding of what really matters?
- 27:29 – What is your player development process?
- 29:54 – Do you have concerns about the future of college tennis?
- 40:14 – How would you encourage coaches to prioritize the other aspects of their program to help them continue to have a program for decades to come?
Rapid Fire Questions:
- 42:11 – What is a book that made a major impact on you as a coach?
- 42:50 – Do you have a favorite drill that you do with your players?
- 44:02 – Name one thing you have changed your mind on in recent years?
- 45:13 – Do you have a favorite quote?
- 46:41 – Is there one lesson you hope your players have learned by the time they leave UCF?
On the College Tennis Coaches Podcast with Dave Mullins, he and his guests deliver the best tennis information through open discussions. Current coaching topics, trends, guests, and some fun along the way will make this your new favorite tennis podcast. The College Tennis Coaches Podcast hosts various tennis industry professionals for engaging and educational topics.