The Michigan men’s tennis team didn’t have the season it wanted in 2014 after All-American Evan King graduated.
So it’s bringing in a former national champion coach to get the program’s momentum going again.
Athletic Director Dave Brandon announced Saturday the hiring of former Pepperdine head coach Adam Steinberg to the same position at Michigan.
“I am honored to be leading the Michigan men’s tennis team and want to thank Dave Brandon and (Olympic sport administrator) Mike DeBord for this tremendous opportunity,” Steinberg said in a statement. “The University of Michigan represents a standard of academic and athletic excellence, and I look forward to contributing to the program's rich tradition.”
After Michigan’s first-round loss in the NCAA Tournament, the athletic department announced last month that Bruce Berque would not return as head coach and replaced him with Steinberg, who coached Pepperdine for 12 seasons.
“Adam comes to Michigan with national championship experience and a track record of consistent success at the highest level of collegiate tennis,” Brandon said in a statement. “We believe he can lead our men’s tennis program in a positive direction.”
Steinberg was successful from the outset in Malibu, Calif., totaling a 282-105 record with a national championship in 2006. He led Pepperdine to the NCAA Tournament in 10 of 12 seasons and was successful in the West Coast Conference as well, winning two regular-season titles and 10 tournament titles.
The 47-year-old native of New York was also WCC Coach of the Year seven times and National Coach of the Year after Pepperdine’s national championship in 2006.
Before Pepperdine, Steinberg coached at Alabama, Northwestern and St. John’s. His collegiate roots trace back to Big Ten country — Steinberg played at Penn State in the ‘80s.
Steinberg inherits a program attempting to rebuild toward NCAA Tournament success. Berque finished 159-104 in 10 seasons at Michigan, including 66-25 in Big Ten play and 32-23 the last two seasons. He reached the NCAA Tournament nine times in 10 years but never advanced past the third round and never won a Big Ten title.