Aug. 23, 2012
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ty Tucker, head coach of the Ohio State men’s tennis team, revealed the Buckeyes’ 2012-13 schedule Thursday. The Scarlet and Gray, which concluded the 2011-12 season ranked No. 4 in the final Campbell/ITA College Tennis Rankings, will face 13 teams that qualified for the 2012 NCAA Championships and eight programs that finished in the Top 25.
Ohio State, the 2011-12 Big Ten Conference regular-season champions, will face three opponents – Georgia, Pepperdine and Louisville – that also won their respective league championships. In Coach Tucker’s effort to suitably prepare the Buckeyes for postseason play with a tough non-conference schedule, four of their upcoming non-conference opponents also advanced to the semifinals, quarterfinals or round of 16 in the 2012 NCAA Championships.
The Buckeyes will play host to two major events in 2013. First, Ohio State will welcome Miami (Fla.), Louisiana-Lafayette and East Tennessee State for the ITA Kick-Off Weekend Jan. 26-27. Three months later the Scarlet and Gray will host the 2013 Big Ten Championship April 25-28.
Ohio State will open the 2013 spring season playing eight of its 10 matches in Columbus during the months of January and February. The season gets underway Jan. 16 when the Buckeyes host Butler and Xavier in the annual meeting between the Scarlet and Gray, Bulldogs and Musketeers. Immediately following the ITA Kick-Off Weekend matches, as in the same day, Ohio State will play Toledo Jan. 27.
The month of February will prove to be a busy one for Ohio State as it will face three of their eight opponents that landed in the final 2011-12 Top 25 rankings in (No. 4) Georgia, (No. 25) LSU and (No. 16) North Carolina. The Buckeyes will open the month hosting Georgia Feb. 3. The Bulldogs were crowned SEC champions a season ago and advanced to the quarterfinals of the 2012 NCAA Championships. For the first time, the Scarlet and Gray will hit the road, traveling to College Station, Texas, where they will face Texas A&M Feb. 10. Ohio State’s next dual match will take place Feb. 23 vs. Notre Dame. One day later (Feb. 24), the Buckeyes will welcome LSU to Columbus before taking another road trip, this time to Chapel Hill, N.C., where they will play North Carolina, 2012 NCAA Championships Round of 16 qualifiers, Feb. 27.
The Scarlet and Gray will begin their Big Ten Conference regular-season title defense March 1 when they play Penn State in State College, Pa. Following more than a week off from competition, Ohio State will return to the courts in Malibu, Calif., where it will face 2012 NCAA semifinalist and West Coast Conference champion Pepperdine March 12. The Buckeyes will face another conference champion in Louisville (BIG EAST) March 19 in Columbus in the first of three consecutive home matches for the Buckeyes.
The heart of Ohio State’s Big Ten schedule will commence March 22 when it hosts Purdue. Following the meeting with the Boilermakers is a match vs. Indiana March 24. Five days later (March 29), Ohio State will head west to face Nebraska in Lincoln, before traveling to Iowa City, Iowa, for a meeting with the Hawkeyes March 31.
Sandwiched between the Buckeyes’ conference matches is an April 3 tilt at Kentucky, a team that advanced to the round of 16 at the 2012 NCAA Championships. Getting back to Big Ten Conference action, the Scarlet and Gray will place consecutive matches in Columbus April 5 and 7 vs. Wisconsin and Minnesota, respectively. Three of Ohio State’s final four matches are on the road starting with a trip to Illinois, who finished 2011-12 ranked 15th and advanced to the round of 16 at the NCAA championships, April 12. The Buckeyes then head to Evanston, Ill., where they will play Northwestern April 14. Returning to Columbus for their final regular-season home match vs. Michigan State April 19, the Scarlet and Gray will conclude the regular-season portion of their schedule April 21 at Michigan.
Following the Big Ten championships, Ohio State looks to be one of 64 teams to qualify for the2013 NCAA Championships.