The Ferris State University men's and women's tennis programs tabbed FSU alum Mark Doren to carry on their longstanding championship tradition as he was appointed as the permanent head coach for the Bulldogs before the 2019-20 season.
Doren, who served as the interim head coach for both squads in 2018-19, led the men's tennis team to the 2019 NCAA Division II Midwest Regional Championship match and the Bulldogs also finished as the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) Tournament runner-up during a successful postseason run.
"With the strong tradition and success of Bulldog Tennis, we could not be more excited in moving Mark Doren into the permanent role as our Head Coach for Ferris State," said FSU Athletics Director Perk Weisenburger. "Mark did an outstanding job this past year in continuing to move our programs forward as the interim head coach, including a great showing for the men's team in reaching the NCAA Tournament and by elevating the women's team in the GLIAC standings.
"Mark's done a remarkable job in building successful relationships with our team, faculty and community," he added. "We are excited for our student-athletes and the Bulldog tennis programs with Mark moving forward as our head coach."
A 2006 graduate of FSU's Professional Tennis Management (PTM) program, Doren led the Bulldog men's squad to a fifth-straight appearance in the GLIAC Tournament Championship match and the team also reached the D2 Midwest Regional title match for the fourth-straight year. The Bulldogs had a thrilling comeback victory over Lewis in the regional semifinals before battling reigning D2 Final Four participant and nationally-ranked Indianapolis in a highly-contested regional final. He also helped lead the FSU women's squad to a fifth-place league finish and a GLIAC Tourney berth last year as the team improved its league placing by two spots over the previous campaign.
"The past eight months as the Interim Head Coach have been the most rewarding and enjoyable of my 15 plus years in the tennis industry," said Doren. "Ferris State has been part of my life since I was 14 years old and took tennis classes here at the university. It is an honor to be named Head Coach of the tennis programs. I look forward to continuing the outstanding tradition of success on the court and in the classroom."
In his role as the interim head coach, Doren has oversaw all aspects of both programs, including directing practice, travel and scheduling. He's also been responsible for all recruiting and served on the GLIAC Player of the Week Committee.
Along with his duties with the Bulldog tennis programs, Doren has also served as the administrative assistant for the school's nationally-renown PTM program at FSU where he's been responsible for recruitment and assisted in teaching program classes at the FSU Racquet and Fitness Center. He's also helped lead player development to improve student abilities. His efforts helped the PTM program double its recruitment last fall over the previous two years.
In addition to working at FSU, Doren has worked as a head tennis professional at the MVP Athletic Club in West Michigan since 2008. In that role, he organized and coached all travel teams and expanded club revenue with growth in all programs. During his time with the club, he also developed a successful elite junior program that has produced upwards of 15 collegiate student-athletes. His tenure helped the organization establish a large following within the community.
Doren's background also includes time as the assistant tennis professional at the Coral Ridge Country Club from 2006-08 and he served as an aircraft armament systems individual with the United States Air Force from 1996-99. A certified United States Professional Tennis Association (USPTA) Elite Professional, Doren served as the PTM Student Association president while earning his degree and has been honored as the recipient of both the Scott Schultz Excellence Award and the Rick Calton Professionalism Award.
Doren earned his bachelor's degree in marketing and Professional Tennis Management from Ferris State.
Together, the Bulldog men's and women's tennis programs have combined for a total of 37 GLIAC Championships and made 43 NCAA Tournament appearances in program history. FSU has captured four of the last five GLIAC titles on the men's side and twice reached the D2 Final Eight or higher since 2016. Both teams will welcome back a strong nucleus for the 2019-20 campaign under Doren's direction.