DIV I      

Mitchell Frank
Virginia
Freshmen
Key Notes:
• Rated as No. 1 singles player in latest ITA rankings
• Won both the ITA All-American and ITA National Indoor singles titles in the fall                
• Ranked as high as No. 5 in the world in juniors

Evan King
Michigan
Junior
Key Notes:
• Named ITA All-American last year
• Compiled a 30-9 overall record, including 21-3 in dual matches in 2011 (all playing at No. 1 singles)
• Finished last season ranked No. 17 in singles 
 

Steve Johnson
Southern California
Senior
Key Notes:
• Five-time All-American who won the NCAA singles championship in 2011
• Finished last year on a 35-match winning streak
• Named 2011 ITA National Player of the Year

Kevin King
Georgia Tech
Senior
Key Notes:
• Posted the Jackets' best record in the fall season, going 14-3
• Reached the semifinals of the NCAA doubles championship last year
• Ranked No. 9 in final 2011 ITA doubles rankings 
 

DIV II      

Edualdo Bonet
Armstrong Atlantic State
Senior
Key Notes:
• Finished last season ranked No. 1 in the nation in singles
• Earned ITA All-America honors in singles last year
• Compiled a 25-2 record in singles play during the 2011 dual match season

 

Willi Wolfter
Lynn
Sophomore
Key Notes: 
• Named 2011 Sunshine State Conference Freshman of the Year
• Finished the season ranked No. 15 in the nation in singles play with an overall record of 21-5
• Teamed with Alessandro Sarra to earn ITA All-America honors in doubles in 2011

Hans Hach
Abilene Christian
Sophomore
Key Notes:
• 2011 ITA All-American in both singles and doubles
• Finished the season ranked No. 15 in the nation in singles play with an overall record of 21-5
• Named 2011 Lone Star Conference Player of the Year

 

Christiaan Lee-Daigle
Queens (N.C.)
Senior
Key Notes:
• Compiled records of 18-3 in singles and 17-4 in doubles in 2011
• Named 2011 Conference Carolinas Player of the Year
• Three-time Conference Carolinas All-Conference First Team member

 

DIV III      

Adam Putterman
Washington-St. Louis
Junior
Key Notes:
• Earned first-team all-UAA doubles honors with partner Gary Parizher last season
• Has compiled a 34-18 career record in singles play
• Named 2010 UAA Freshman of the Year

Alex Lane
Claremont-Mudd Scripps
Junior
Key Notes:
• Reached quarterfinal round of the 2011 NCAA singles tournament 
• Was unanimous selection as 2011 SCIAC Athlete of the Year
• Earned a year-end ITA singles national ranking of No. 5 after going 26-6

 

Andrew La Cava
Whitman
Sophomore
Key Notes:
• Earned All-Northwest Conference First-Team honors in 2011
• Posted records of 14-6 in singles and 14-8 in doubles last season
• Advanced to ITA's Small College National Championships in both singles and doubles

Nicholas Ballou
California Lutheran
Junior
Key Notes:
• Ranked as high as No. 3 in the nation by the ITA before suffering a season-ending injury last year
• Earned 2010 First Team All-SCIAC honors as a freshman
• Qualified for both the NCAA Individual National Championships in singles and doubles in 2010

Division I

Southern California Trojans

Noting USC: The three-time defending national champions will look to become the first team to win four consecutive titles since Pac-12 rival Stanford accomplished the feat (1995-1998). The Trojans return a wealth of experience, including returning singles champion Steve Johnson, to go along with a strong incoming freshmen class. USC has five different players ranked in the top 125 of the preseason ITA singles rankings. Johnson isn't among those five players as he opted to sit out the fall season and play as an amateur on the pro circuit. However, now Johnson is back and he is gunning to become the first player to repeat as singles champion since Virginia's Somdev Devvarman did so in 2007-2008.

Virginia Cavaliers

Noting UVA: The Cavaliers, who lost in the national championship match a season ago, boast the nation's top player according to the ITA singles rankings. Freshmen Mitchell Frank will be counted upon heavily in Virginia's rotation after he won both the ITA All-American and ITA National Indoor singles titles in the fall, and is just the fourth player in program history to earn a No. 1 national singles ranking. The Cavs also return key contributors Alex Domijan, Jarmere Jenkins, and Justin Shane from last season's teams to give the squad a balance of veteran leadership and youthful talent. Virginia -- coming off the best finish in program history -- will be gunning for its first national title in 2012.

Georgia Bulldogs

Noting UGA: The Bulldogs, who have advanced to the NCAA semifinals in five of the last six seasons, will look to keep their recent run of success going in 2012. Georgia plays host to the NCAA Championships in May for a record 27th time. A trio of upperclassmen -- Will Spencer, KU Singh and Sadio Doumbia -- will be called upon to provide the leadership that Georgia will need to defend its homecourt and capture the seventh national title in program history. The Bulldogs are sure to be battle-tested come NCAA tournament time as they are set to play seven teams ranked in the top 25.

DIVISION II

Valdosta State Blazers

Noting VSU: Perfection is on the mind of the Blazers heading into 2012. Valdosta State -- who compiled a 21-1 dual match record -- is looking to defend its national championship from a season ago. The Blazers have to replace three key seniors off of last year's squad but are confident they can continue on their current run of success that has saw the Blazers play for five of the last eight national titles. Christian Hansen and Luis Loeffler are two key returnees for Valdosta State as the two German natives will look to power the Blazers back into national championship contention this season.

Barry Buccaneers

Noting BU: The hard luck Buccaneers have lost three of the last four national championship matches -- though they were victorious in 2010 -- including a 5-2 decision to Valdosta State last season. Returning senior Max Wimmer will be counted upon to provide leadership to a young squad that includes eight freshmen and sophomores. Barry will not only be gunning for its 10th consecutive NCAA tournament appearance but also the second national title in program history. A challenging schedule is sure to provide the Buccaneers the experience and toughness they need to make a run in 2012.

Armstrong Atlantic State Pirates

Noting AASU: The Pirates return two players ranked in the top 10 of the latest ITA singles rankings in senior Edualdo Bonet (No. 2) and junior Matus Mydla (No. 9). Armstrong is gunning for a return to the top after winning back-to-back national championships in 2008-2009. The Pirates have fallen off a bit since then but appear to have a squad capable of hoisting another title in 2012. Senior Mikk Irdoja and junior Daniel Regan join Bonet and Mydla to form an extremely talented and experienced top half of the lineup. 

DIVISION III

Amherst Lord Jeffs

Noting AC: The Lord Jeffs have appeared in the last three national championship matches, losing in 2009 and 2010 before finally breaking through last season to capture the program's first national title. Amherst brings back a wealth of experience, including all six players who started in the singles matches against Emory in last season's NCAA title match. Returning All-Americans Wes Waterman, Luis Rattenhuber, Mark Kahan and Austin Chafetz give the Lord Jeffs plenty of firepower as they gun to defend their national championship and perhaps improve upon last season's school record mark of 36-1.

Emory Eagles

Noting EU: The Eagles will be in pursuit of the third national championship in program history in 2012 after falling short in the title match last season to Amherst. Emory, who has advanced to the national championship match in four of the last six seasons, returns the two finalists from the 2011 NCAA singles championship. Seniors Chris Goodwin and Dillon Pottish -- Goodwin topped Pottish in the singles finals a year ago -- are back to try and help the Eagles take that next step and win their first NCAA title since 2006.

UC Santa Cruz Banana Slugs

Noting UCSC: The Banana Slugs -- sporting one of the most unique nicknames in all of sports -- are back and stronger than ever in 2012 as they attempt to win their record eighth national championship. UC Santa Cruz has established itself as one of the most dominating athletic programs in the country, as it has advanced to NCAA tournament semifinals 19 times in the last 23 years. Returning seniors Yushi Ayabe, Josh Mason, Jordan Randolph and Ian Stanley look to keep the tradition going strong in 2012 for the Banana Slugs.

What to Watch
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February 3 -- Pepperdine at Ohio State (Division I)

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February 25 -- Barry at Valdosta State (Division II)

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March 11 -- Florida at Kentucky (Division I)

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March 20 -- West Florida at Lynn (Division II)

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April 7 -- Middlebury at Williams (Division III)

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April 14 -- Pomona-Pitzer at Claremont-Mudd-Scripps (Division III)

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April 14 -- Abilene Christian at UC San Diego (Division II)

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April 15 -- Washington-St. Louis at Chicago (Division III)

@ April 18 -- Baylor at Texas A&M (Division I)

All photos courtesy of respective school athletic departments.