Wisconsin alum Danny Westerman named men’s tennis coach - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Wisconsin alum Danny Westerman named men’s tennis coach

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MADISON, Wis. – Danny Westerman, a former All-Big Ten selection for the Badgers, has been named the head coach of the University of Wisconsin men's tennis program, Director of Athletics Barry Alvarez announced Monday. Westerman returns to UW after a successful nine-year stint as the head coach at the University of Denver.

“We're extremely excited to welcome Danny back to campus,” said Alvarez. “He had great success during his playing career at Wisconsin and we've followed and admired his accomplishments at the University of Denver. Danny pairs a winning attitude, head coaching experience and a passion for Badgers athletics that makes him a natural for this position. He has the knowledge of what it takes for Wisconsin to return to postseason play.”

Westerman becomes the 17th head men's tennis coach in Wisconsin history, replacing Greg Van Emburgh, who resigned in May.

“I am excited and honored to be the next Badgers men's tennis coach,” said Westerman. “I would like to thank Coach Alvarez, Marija Pientka, and the entire administration for this incredible opportunity. The University of Wisconsin holds a very special place in my heart for our family, and I cannot wait to get started. There are not many coaches that get the chance to coach at their alma mater, and I plan to give back to the tennis program that gave me so much.”

Westerman led Denver to the NCAA tournament in each of the last three seasons, which included the school's first-ever NCAA tournament win in 2013. In nine seasons at Denver, he guided the Pioneers to a mark of 123-83-1 (.597) and a total of five NCAA tournament appearances. Westerman's teams garnered 21 All-Conference singles honors and seven doubles teams were named all-conference. Over the last three seasons, a total of 15 Pioneers took home academic all-conference honors.

In 2015, Westerman was named ITA Mountain Region Coach of the Year after Denver's 18-9 campaign that included a perfect 5-0 conference mark and Summit League championship. The Los Angeles native guided the Pioneers to three of the four highest single-season win totals in school history, equaling the school's record with 19 wins in 2010.

Prior to arriving at Denver, Westerman served as an assistant coach for three seasons at his alma mater, the University of Wisconsin. From 1998-2002, Westerman enjoyed one of the most successful playing careers in UW history. Just the fifth three-time All-Big Ten selection at UW, Westerman also claimed the prestigious Big Ten Medal of Honor in 2002.

He finished his career fourth in Badgers history with 92 singles wins and his .634 (92-53) career winning percentage ranked eighth in school annals at the time of his graduation. Westerman reached No. 16 in the individual national singles rankings and registered a 63-47 doubles record in his four seasons.

During the fall of 2001, he became the first UW player to win the ITA Midwest Regional championship. Westerman posted a 27-12 record in 2002 and finished the season ranked 29th in the nation. He also earned his first trip to the NCAA singles championship that year, becoming one of only 16 Badgers since 1950 to do so. He earned three Academic All-Big Ten selections in his career and was the 2001-02 team co-captain.

Following his career at Wisconsin, Westerman went on to play professionally, earning a world ranking in both singles and doubles as well as a Top 100 ranking among United States professional players.

Westerman graduated with a bachelor's degree in marketing and management from Wisconsin in 2002 and earned his MBA from the School of Business at UW in 2005. He has served as a member of the Intercollegiate Tennis Association Division I Men's Tennis Operating Committee. Westerman and his wife, Elizabeth, who is a Madison native and former UW women's tennis letterwinner, have two boys, James, and Thomas, who was born in May of 2015.

Year               School                     Overall             Pct.                 Conf.            Post-Season
2006-07        Denver                       13-7                .650                   2-1              

2007-08        Denver                       18-6                .750                   2-1               NCAA Tournament

2008-09        Denver                      10-11              .476                   1-1              

2009-10        Denver                       19-5                .792                   1-1               NCAA Tournament

2010-11        Denver                       9-13                .409                   0-1              

2011-12        Denver                       12-9                .571                  N/A             

2012-13        Denver                      12-12              .500                   5-0               NCAA Tournament 2nd Round

2013-14        Denver                    12-11-1            .500                   5-0               NCAA Tournament

2014-15        Denver                       18-9                .667                   5-0               NCAA Tournament

Overall         9 Seasons             123-83-1           .597                 21-5              5 NCAA appearances

What they're saying about Westerman…

"Not only does Danny have the results to prove that he's a very qualified coach, but he has all the respect from coaches around the country and he is very well liked by recruits and players. For him to take a program like Denver and do what they've done over the last four or five years proves he has the pedigree to be Wisconsin's coach. Whether or not he went to Wisconsin, he is the right coach. The fact that he is an alum, makes it even more special. I won't be surprised if he has Wisconsin winning a Big Ten title in the near future.”

- David Roditi, TCU head coach

“I've known Danny for many years and Wisconsin has hired an exceptional person and head coach. I'm excited to have him in the Big Ten, except for the fact that I'll now have to face him. He's been a great friend and I'm thrilled for him and his family. He'll do great things for the Badgers.”

- Adam Steinberg, Michigan head coach

“Danny has quickly emerged as one of the brightest young minds in college tennis. It's been a joy to see his career thrive as a player and assistant at Wisconsin, then as a tremendously successful head coach at Denver. He is a Badger through and through and will represent the University of Wisconsin with the highest degree of leadership, integrity and success.”

- Billy Pate, Princeton head coach

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