Mark Booras named tennis director

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Mark Booras named tennis director

Courtesy of Tulane Athletics

Courtesy of Tulane Athletics

Courtesy of Tulane Athletics

Courtesy of Tulane Athletics

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After serving Tulane’s men’s tennis team for eight years, Mark Booras was appointed as the director of tennis this August by Director of Athletics Troy Dannen. This change, however, had very little effect on the program’s day-to-day operations.

Booras has been the head coach of the Green Wave men’s tennis team since 2009, helping return the program to perennial top-25 status. With Booras now serving as director, the only major change will be his new responsibility of overseeing the women’s team, led by first-year head coach Maria Brito.

“The director of tennis job is just kind of a way to bring some more community to both teams and to help [Brito] and her development …,” Booras said.  “I’m excited to work with this opportunity with the women’s team and watch both programs grow.”

Booras remains in his role as coach of the men’s team, which finished 30th in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association rankings last season, while also overseeing the women’s team, which finished outside the top 50 last season. Booras was the first and only coach of the Tulane tennis program after it was reinstated after Hurricane Katrina, and he has high hopes for both teams.

“I feel like we have a great amount of depth and focus, and the big thing for our guys is that we have the drive to do something special,” Booras said. “You know, coming from where we came from eight years ago, there was no tennis program here, so every year they’ve got something they want to do extra. They’re doing something unique that no one in the country has ever done … these guys are pioneers. They want to do something special, and their work ethic shows.”

Booras speaks highly about his own players, two of whom — Ewan Moore and Constantin Schmitz  are currently ranked in the ITA preseason top 100 player rankings. Booras himself, however, has also played a role in the rebuilding of the Tulane tennis program.

Booras was hired out of LSU, where he had been the associate head coach. In his first year, Booras brought in the No. 25 recruiting class in the country, and in the program’s first official dual match against another team since 2005, it defeated Centenary 7-0. That year, the program finished the season 3-18. Tulane has not finished a season with a losing record since.

Having been on a steady path of gradual improvement since the program’s reinstatement, Booras believes that the program will only continue to grow.

“We’re continuing to give our student-athletes the best possible opportunities to succeed, whether that be how we’re coaching them, providing them with scheduling, providing them with facilities, providing them with different things that are allowing them to grow and be great ambassadors for Tulane University,” Booras said.

The men’s team will head to Houston this week, while the women’s team will head to Pacific Palisades, California, for separate invitational tournaments.