Now in his 10th season as Arkansas' head coach, Michael Hegarty has returned the Razorbacks to
national prominence with two Southeastern Conference Western Division
championships and six trips to the NCAA Tournament, including each of
the last five years.
Under Hegarty, Arkansas improved from an 8-13 finish his first year in
2004 to 11-11 in 2005 to a spot in the NCAA Tournament in 2006, as well
as the school's first ever SEC Western Division titles followed in 2008
and 2009. The '08 club advanced to the Elite Eight of the NCAA
Tournament while the '09 team reached the Round of 16.
Hegarty enters the 2012-13 season just four wins shy of the most career
victories of any coach in Arkansas women's tennis history. Hegarty's 121
wins ranks second to Kevin Platt, who Hegarty succeeded in 2004. Last
year's team continued its run of postseason appearances, making the NCAA
tournament for the fifth straight season and the sixth time in the past
seven years. The Razorbacks had wins over seven ranked opponents,
including No. 12 Tennessee, No. 31 Oklahoma, and No. 37 LSU.
The 2012 season was another success for Hegarty's Razorbacks. The team
battled the entire season en route to another NCAA appearance and SEC
In 2011, Hegarty 's team finished at the top of the conference, earning a
second place finish in the Western Division and No. 24 national
ranking. Anouk Tigu was also named to her third straight All-SEC team
and was a first team honoree for the second straight year.
Hegarty's success has been so prevalent over the past five years that
his teams have been ranked in the preseason top-25 for five straight
seasons, including the 2012 spring season.
In 2010, despite replacing three players in his singles lineup from the
2009 team, finished 18-10, ranked No. 22 in the nation and advanced to
the second round of the NCAA Tournament. The Razorbacks had wins over
No. 22 Ole Miss, No. 23 Washington, No. 27 TCU, No. 32 Tulsa and No. 35
Oklahoma. Hegarty was named the ITA Central Region Coach of the Year for
the second time in three seasons.
In 2009, the Razorbacks were 15-8 and won the SEC West at 8-4. Arkansas
beat Oral Roberts and No. 28 TCU in the NCAA Tournament before falling
to No. 3 Duke, 4-2. During the regular season, Hegarty's team posted
wins over No. 13 Kentucky, No. 13 Tennessee, No. 16 Florida and No. 22
Hegarty was named SEC Coach of the Year in 2008 after going 18-10,
winning the SEC West at 9-2 and guiding the Razorbacks to the Elite
Eight in the NCAA Tournament. Also the ITA Central Region Coach of the
Year, Arkansas beat No. 46 Wake Forest, No. 14 North Carolina and No. 2
Georgia in the post-season before losing to No. 7 UCLA. During the
regular season, Arkansas posted wins over No. 6 Georgia, No. 15 Kentucky
and No. 20 Tennessee.
Under Hegarty's tutelage, the Razorbacks have accumulated many
individual honors. Aurelija Miseviciute won the Intercollegiate Tennis
Association National Indoor Championship title in 2007. Consistently
ranked in the top three in the country, Miseviciute repeated as ITA
National Indoor Champion in 2008.
Arkansas' most decorated women's tennis player, Miseviciute, with the
help of Hegarty, won an astounding 126 singles matches in her career,
earned two All-America and three All-SEC honors, and was a finalist for
the Honda Award in 2008 and 2009.
Most recently, Anouk Tigu was voted the ITA Central Region Player to
Watch in the spring of 2010, and she validated the attention by winning
the ITA Central Region championship in the fall of the 2010 season. Also
in 2010, Kelsey Sundaram was named the ITA Rookie Player of the Year.
Tigu, who was ranked No. 29 in the nation, was first-team All-SEC while
Sundaram made the all-freshman team.
Another honoree is Ela Kaluder, who was named the 2007 ITA Player to
Watch, an honor that proved prophetic in 2009 when Kaluder was named the
ITA Central Region Senior Player of the Year. She also earned
first-team All-SEC honors in 2007 and 2008.
Not content for his players to succeed only on the court, Hegarty has
instilled a strong academic work ethic into his players, believing
tennis should go hand-in-hand with a college education.
Leading the way in the classroom was Miseviciute, who was named the SEC
Scholar-Athlete of the Year and an ESPN The Magazine Academic
All-American in both 2008 and 2009. Since 2004, Hegarty's Razorbacks
have been named to the SEC Honor Roll a total of 30 times.
After a successful college and professional career, Hegarty began his
coaching career as an assistant coach at his alma mater, Auburn
University, in 1994. While playing at Auburn, Hegarty broke the Top 20
in singles in both 1992 and 1993. He was named a two-time academic
All-SEC honoree and graduated with a degree in journalism.
After two seasons coaching the Tigers, Hegarty took his first job at
Arkansas, assistant coach of the men's tennis team under current men's
head coach Robert Cox for a year before taking an assistant coaching
position with the Kentucky Wildcats men's and women's programs. Hegarty
took his first head coaching job at Fresno State in 1997 where he took
the west coast by storm. The Bulldogs spent three seasons in the Top 25
with Hegarty and were crowned Western Athletic Conference champions in
1999. For this, Hegarty was named WAC and Region VII Coach of the Year.
Before returning to Arkansas, Hegarty served as an assistant coach for
the University of Florida men's tennis team from 2001-2003, helping
transform Florida men's tennis into a national powerhouse. For his work
with the Gators, Hegarty was named the ITA Southeast Regional Assistant
Coach of the Year.
After graduating Auburn and entering the pro circuit, Hegarty was ranked
as high as 284th in the world and competed in several world-renowned
tournaments including the 1994 US Open, the Australian Open and the
Hegarty and his wife, Mary McDonald, currently reside in Fayetteville with their children Theo and Riley.