Big Rapids, Mich. - The Ferris State University Athletics Department announced the appointment of Chad Berryhill as the school's new men's and women's tennis head coach in the fall of 212.
A Ferris State alum, Berryhill took over the Bulldog program following two successful years as the assistant men's tennis coach at NCAA Division I Central Florida where he helped the Knights haul in the nation's 17th-ranked incoming recruiting class for 2012-13, according to the Tennis Recruiting Network (www.tennisrecruiting.net). The program's most recent class also ranked first in Florida over traditional state powers such as Florida, Florida State and Miami.
Along with his duties as the head men's and women's tennis coach at FSU, Berryhill also serves as the head tennis professional at the FSU Racquet and Fitness Center in addition to directing the tennis camp program. He replaced Alex Palladino, who departed FSU after five seasons at the helm.
"I've known Chad since his days as a student and followed his success closely," said FSU Associate Athletics Director Jon Coles. "He is a proven winner and an up and coming elite collegiate coach who we're grabbing at the right time.
"His success and ties with junior college and international players will allow him to recruit high-level competitors who will make an immediate impact. With Chad on board, I'm extremely excited about the future of Bulldog Tennis as we continue to build off this past year's men's league tournament championship," he added.
While at Central Florida, Berryhill helped the program earn a top 75 overall national ranking in NCAA Division I men's tennis. During his first campaign at UCF in 2010-11, the Knights faced one of the nation's toughest schedules by playing 10 nationally-ranked opponents. Seven players also earned spots on the Conference USA Commissioner's Academic Honor Roll.
"We are very fortunate to have Chad joining our staff," said Derek Ameel, who serves as the director of FSU's Professional Tennis Management (PTM) program. "As an alumni of our PTM program and successful college coach at the Division I level, he brings with him the unique understanding of the synergy required for this position and the experience needed to grow our tennis teams, PTM program and racquet facility. I believe Chad will be a tremendous asset to Ferris and the community of Big Rapids."
Berryhill, who's certified by both the United States Professional Tennis Association and the Professional Tennis Registry, graduated from Ferris State in 2005 with a degree in marketing and professional tennis management. He also earned a masters degree in physical education from South Florida in 2009.
"I'm excited about this tremendous opportunity to come back to Ferris State and the Big Rapids community," Berryhill said. "This position will allow me continue to coach collegiate tennis at a high level and have an impact on young lives and the tennis industry. It was an easy decision because Ferris is such a special place."
Berryhill arrived at UCF after an impressive five-year tenure (2005-10) developing one of the top programs in the country as the women's tennis head coach at Hillsborough Community College in Tampa. He led the Lady Hawks to the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) National Championship in 2008 along with national runner-up finishes in 2006, 2007 and 2009. His final team posted a 18-5 mark in 2010 and placed third nationally with one of his players, Olivia Howlett, claiming the singles national championship and being chosen as the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) National Player of the Year.
Hillsborough won four consecutive Florida Community College Activities Association state titles under Berryhill. Nine of his junior college players went on to sign with four-year schools and 10 were tabbed as NJCAA All-Americans. Six players claimed ITA All-America laurels, four players were chosen as NJCAA Academic All-Americans and three received ITA National Player of the Year recognition.
While at Hillsborough, Berryhill received 2008 NJCAA National Coach of the Year honors and was twice named the ITA Region IV Coach of the Year. He served as the ITA's NJCAA Women's Ranking Chair and led his program to five ITA Small College National Championships. Additionally, he was the HCC Tennis Complex Operations Manager.
Before moving to the junior college ranks, Berryhill spent four years overall as a high school coach in Michigan, including three years as the head boys coach at Big Rapids High School. He was recognized as the 2004 Michigan High School Regional Coach of the Year for his efforts on the prep level.
During his time at FSU, Berryhill twice served as president of the PTM Student Association and held internship assignments as the director of tennis at the Brynwood Country Club in Milwaukee and with the Michigan State Nike Tennis Camps in East Lansing. He's also worked at the Court One Athletic Club in Lansing and served as the Director of Tennis for the Harvard Summer Camp along with being the administrative director and developmental coach for the renowed Tennissmith School in Tampa.
Berryhill took over a men's tennis program that won the school's first Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) Tournament Championship since 1999 in 2012.
The Bulldog women's tennis program most recently reached the national tournament in back-to-back seasons both in 2009-10 and 2010-11.
"I'm looking forward to working with both programs on an every day basis," Berryhill said. "One of our first goals will be to repeat as the conference champions on the men's side and I hope to continue to elevate our program on both sides back to where we are competing year in and year out for championships."
WHAT THEY ARE SAYING ABOUT CHAD BERRYHILL:
"Chad has trained under the world's best coaches and will add the intellectual and physical requirements so desperately needed in today's college circles."
- Vic Braden, Legendary Coach & Tennis Research Expert
"I'm so pleased to hear that Chad Berryhill is returning to Ferris State to coach the men's and women's tennis teams. Chad was the Director of Tennis for The Tennis Academy at Harvard several years ago and helped move the quality of our teaching forward remarkably. I don't think you could find a better combination of skills for Chad's additional role in the development of coaches in the Ferris State tennis program. He brings a warm personality, great technical skill, and considerable administrative expertise to this new position, and we wish him and Ferris State the best of luck in moving forward."
- Dave Fish, Head Men's Tennis Coach, Harvard
"Great news for tennis! Chad Berryhill, a graduate of Ferris State's unique tennis management program, is returning to his alma mater as the new Men's and Women's Head Tennis Coach. In addition to coaching the teams, Chad will have a significant role in the development of the next generation of tennis teaching professionals in America. Our game needs individuals like Chad Berryhill. He is a total package coach and has a skill set, both on and off the court, that far exceeds the industry norm. I spent five years with Chad and know he is one of the most knowledgeable and competent coaches in all of college tennis."
- Steve Smith, Tennissmith School
"Chad will bring a tremendous amount of passion and coaching experience to the Men's & Women's tennis programs. As a graduate of Ferris State, Chad also has a vested interest in seeing the varsity tennis programs, tennis camps, PTM program, and the racquet facility programming succeed and grow. I look forward to welcoming Chad back to campus and working with him to keep Ferris State as a dominant tennis program within the GLIAC and a leader within the tennis industry."
- Collin Cadwell, Administrative Assistant, Ferris State PTM Program
"Chad was a great addition to our staff and extremely valuable due to his past head coaching experience. He's had the opportunity to work with and learn from Steve Smith, who is one of the most well-respected tennis instructors in the country. He's an excellent teacher and has great leadership skills."
- Bobby Cashman, Head Men's Tennis Coach, Central Florida
"We are very fortunate to have Chad joining our staff. As a Ferris Professional Tennis Management Alum and successful college coach at the Division i level, he brings with him the unique understanding of the synergy required for this position and the experience needed to grow our tennis teams, PTM program and racquet facility. I believe Chad will be a tremendous asset to Ferris and the community of Big Rapids."
- Derek Ameel, Professional Tennis Management Director, Ferris State University