USTA hires Blackman to follow McEnroe for player development
WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. (AP) — Martin Blackman will succeed Patrick McEnroe as the U.S. Tennis Association’s general manager of player development.
The USTA plans to formally announce the appointment Monday, when it has scheduled a conference call with USTA Chairman of the Board and President Katrina Adams and COO and Executive Director Gordon Smith.
Blackman is a former player who trained as a junior alongside Andre Agassi and Jim Courier with coach Nick Bollettieri, won the USTA boys’ 16s national title, and was a member of two NCAA championship teams at Stanford. As a pro from 1989-95, Blackman reached a career-best ranking of 158th in 1994.
Blackman later coached at American University, then was the director of a junior training center in College Park, Maryland. He worked for the USTA for two years before leaving in 2011 to start a tennis academy in Boca Raton, Florida.
McEnroe’s departure after 6 1/2 years in the post was announced in September. At the time, he said that, for personal and professional reasons, he did not want to be based full time at the USTA’s planned $60 million tennis center in the Lake Nona area of Orlando, Florida.
McEnroe stayed on with the USTA to help with the transition to his successor.
When McEnroe, the younger brother of seven-time major champion John, was appointed to the GM post, the USTA said its goal was to bring together teenagers from around the country in hopes of maximizing their potential. In 2012, USTA player development set up five regional training centers, raising to 24 the total number of facilities in the program.
No U.S. man has reached the quarterfinals at a Grand Slam tournament since 2012, and none has won a major singles title since Andy Roddick at the 2003 U.S. Open.