BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Lin Loring, the all-time wins leader in women's college tennis, announced his retirement as head coach of the Indiana University women's tennis team on Wednesday. In the midst of his 40th season at the helm of the IU program (44th overall), Loring leaves a legacy that may never be matched in the sport again. In light of Loring's retirement, Indiana University Vice President and Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Fred Glass has named longtime Associate Head Coach Ramiro Azcui as permanent head coach of the women's tennis program.
Over his 44-year career as a head coach, Loring amassed 846 career wins, including 804 at Indiana, with 16 Big Ten titles, 28 national tournament appearances and an AIAW national championship in 1982. His overall career wins are the most in women's college tennis history and his 804 victories at IU are the most ever by a Big Ten coach. Loring is the only coach in Division I women's tennis history to ever amass 800 wins.
"Coaching has been a wonderful adventure spanning 44 years of my life," Loring said. "I have been very lucky and this is very hard, but after much thoughtful reflection, I've decided it is time to say goodbye. I want to say thank you to all my wonderful players, all my IU colleagues and all my Bloomington friends. It is simply the right time to step down and I look forward to spending more time with my two teenage daughters."
"Lin Loring has enjoyed one of the most exemplary careers in the storied history of IU Athletics," said Glass. "The championships, the record win totals, the unassailable record of academic excellence all speak for themselves, but the impact and influence he has had on the lives of his students over the course of five decades at IU is truly extraordinary. Lin is a no-doubt hall of famer who leaves behind an incredible coaching legacy. We wish Lin and his family a wonderful retirement."
Loring has also totaled 350 Big Ten dual victories, the most ever in the conference as he steps down with an overall winning percentage of 71.6 percent (846-336) and a 77.4 winning percentage in Big Ten dual matches (350-102).
Loring was twice named National Coach of the Year and was Big Ten Coach of the Year on five occasions. He has mentored 25 All-Americans, 82 All-Big Ten selections and seven Big Ten Athlete of the Year honorees. Four of his players went on to become IU Athletics Hall of Fame members, including the first woman to ever be inducted in Heather Crowe (1982 AIAW singles champion).
From 1987-1995, Indiana won nine consecutive Big Ten championships. In addition, his teams had a string of 104 consecutive victories against Big Ten opponents over an eight-year span from 1978-1985. Loring had 12 undefeated conference seasons at IU.
The 1982 national championship team was IU's first national title for a women's athletics program. The Hoosiers won a record 39 matches that year as Loring earned Big Ten, Midwest and National Coach of the Year honors.
During the 1991-92 season, Hoosier players posted a perfect singles record of 69-0 in Big Ten action. In the dual match season, they were 54-0, and during the Big Ten Championships, they were 15-0.
He again was named Big Ten Coach of the Year in 1988, 1992, 1995 and 2007 and Midwest Coach of the Year in 1989, 1991, 1992, 1995 and 2004. In 1992, he won his second National Coach of the Year honor after leading IU to a 22-4 dual meet record and a national ranking of 10th.
In 2001, Loring received the Bill Orwig Medal, which recognizes a non-alumnus for unique and significant contributions to IU's athletic program from the IU Alumni Association. He was also honored at the 2000 Intercollegiate Tennis Association National Convention with the Rolex/ITA Meritorious Service Award for his service to collegiate tennis.
Off the court, Loring's teams were always successful in the classroom as he owned a 100 percent graduation rate to those students who exhausted their eligibility under his guidance in Bloomington. His teams were regular winners of the Herbert Cup, given to the IU athletics program with the highest GPA each semester since 2007-08. Loring's teams earned the cup 12 times in that span.
A graduate of the University of California-Santa Barbara, Loring came to Indiana in 1977 after four years of guiding his alma mater's women's tennis program into a national contender. He compiled a 42-17 record at UC-Santa Barbara before making the move the Bloomington.
Loring resides in Bloomington with his daughters, Taylor and Magdalena.
Serving as Associate Head Coach in his 25th season Indiana, Azcui has helped coach the Hoosiers to a 400-237 overall record and an impressive 165-92 record in the Big Ten. Since moving to Indiana, Azcui has helped the Hoosiers win five Big Ten titles and guided Leslie Hureau to All-America honors with her Sweet 16 appearance in the 2011 NCAA Women's Singles Championship Tournament. Five players under Azui's tutelage have earned All-America honors. Azcui won the Midwest Assistant Coach of the Year Award in 1997, 1999 and 2004. He was named the ITA National Assistant Coach of the Year in 2004.
"I want to thank Mr. Glass and Jeremy Gray for having the confidence in allowing me to lead the women's tennis program and continue the tradition at Indiana University," said Azcui. "Today is an incredible day for my family. Indiana Athletics has been a huge part of my life for the last 24 years and we are all proud to be Hoosiers. At the same time, today is a bittersweet day for IU and college tennis as one of greatest coaches in history is stepping down after 40 years of service to this wonderful university. Coach Loring's contributions on and off the court have meant so much to Indiana, college tennis, and to five decades of IU women's tennis players. I am humbled and excited to continue the great tradition at Indiana that we have established over so many years."
"We are thrilled to name Ramiro Azcui as our new head women's tennis coach," said Glass. "His love for Indiana University, his track record of coaching success and player development, and his commitment to building a championship culture with integrity make him an ideal choice to continue Lin's legacy."
Prior to his arrival at Indiana, Azcui served as the head coach of both the men's and women's teams at Truman State. While at Truman State, Azcui compiled a three-year record of 30-24 as the men's coach and a record of 42-20 with the women's program. A two-time conference Coach of the Year with both the men's and women's programs, Azcui took a program that was near the bottom of its conference and placed it among the league's best.
Prior to Truman State, he served as the men's assistant coach at Baylor for one year, and was also an assistant for the men's and women's programs at his alma mater, Abilene Christian University for one season. Both programs at Abilene were ranked among the nation's top 10 and the women claimed third place at the NCAA Division-II nationals.
A successful tennis player himself, Azcui was a four-year letterman at Abilene Christian University. He was named to the All-Conference squad in both singles and doubles from 1984-1987. Azcui also helped lead the team to a pair of top 12 NCAA Division-II appearances. Azcui also earned academic all-conference honors for three years. He earned a bachelor's degree in physical education in 1987 and a master's in sports administration with an emphasis in teaching/coaching from Baylor in 1989.
As a prep athlete, Azcui was ranked No. 2 in Bolivia and represented his nation in the Orange Bowl, one of tennis' premier international tournaments.
Azcui and his wife, Kathy, who was a collegiate tennis player at Baylor University, have a daughter, Denise, and two sons, Sean and Blake.