Fayetteville, Ark., – The No. 23-ranked doubles pair of Manfred Jeske and Mike Nott received a bid for the 2013 NCAA Tournament, it was announced Wednesday evening. The doubles tournament consists of a field of 32 teams and is set to take place May 22-27 at the Khan Outdoor Tennis Complex in Urbana, Ill.
“I am so excited for the opportunity to represent the U of A in the NCAA Tournament,” Mike Nott said. “I know it will be a great experience and we will see the best competition in the country, but Manny and I are ready for it.”
Jeske and Nott have had a very successful season playing at the No. 1 position for the Razorbacks collecting four top-20 wins over Southeastern Conference teams and three ranked wins over non-conference teams.
“I want to congratulate Manny and Mike for earning their way into the NCAA doubles tournament,” head coach Robert Cox said. I am very pleased with these two juniors who have really laid it on the line the past three seasons and have really played some great tennis.”
Throughout intense conference play, the duo collected strong wins over now-ranked No. 18 Chip Cox and Tsvetan Mihov of South Carolina, No. 12 Jordan Angus and Malte Stropp of Mississippi State, No. 8 Tom Jomby and Kevin Lei of Kentucky and No. 7 Jarryd Botha and David Vierya of Alabama.
In the SEC tournament Jeske and Nott met up for the second time with Botha and Vierya. Like the first match play was very competitive and the doubles point came down to a tiebreak point in which Botha and Vierya barely stole from the Hogs.
This will be both Jeske’s and Nott’s first appearance in the NCAA Tournament.
“Arkansas has developed a reputation for some solid doubles play,” Coach Cox said. “It is evident when one looks at the stats from this last spring and seeing that we took 17 doubles points. Manny and Mike have anchored the doubles teams this year and have not only competed with some of the best competition in the country, but have brought home some victories as well.”
Arkansas has a rich history of doubles play with numerous appearances and a national championship on its resume. The duo of Pat Serret and Peter Doohan took home the NCAA doubles Championship in 1982.
Coach Cox is also very familiar with the NCAA Tournament taking numerous teams and players to the tournament in his 26 year at Arkansas. Cox’s most accomplished players Marcus Halpert (1994) and Blake Strode (2009) both made it to the semifinals in the NCAA singles draws. The last Arkansas doubles team to advance to the NCAA Tournament was Strode and Colin Mascall in 2008.
Jeske and Nott have an overall season record of 10-11 including the four fall matches played in which they were 3-1.
“Both Manny and Mike come to practice each day with a winning attitude,” Coach Cox said. “They are the prime example for what we want to have in a student-athlete. They make the grades in the classroom and they perform on the court as well.”
Seeding and the actual doubles bracket will be available later this week through the NCAA.
“These two young men really deserve this opportunity and I think they will take full advantage of it up in Illinois,” Coach Cox said.