After finishing last season second in the Big Ten standings, U-M's best finish since 2007, the Maize & Blue will look to its veteran lineup led by Evan King, a two-time ITA All-American, and co-captains Shaun Bernstein and Barrett Franks, to compete for a conference title in 2013.
Bruce Berque enters his ninth season as head coach of the University of Michigan men's tennis program.
During his tenure in Ann Arbor, Berque has transformed Michigan into a consistent conference and national threat, leading the Wolverines to seven straight NCAA Championships berths - including the 2008 Sweet 16 - and finishing in the top four of the Big Ten in seven of his first eight years. He has amassed a career record of 127-81, and a 51-20 record in Big Ten Conference matches. He was named the 2012 ITA Midwest Region Coach of the Year.
The Wolverines have been a regular in the rankings under Berque, reaching an ITA ranking as high as No. 8 in 2008 and 2011. He has coached three ITA All-Americans at Michigan: Matko Maravic and Brian Hung in 2007 (doubles), and Evan King in 2011 and 2012 (singles). Under Berque's guidance, King became the first Michigan player since 1992 to reach the Round of 16 in the singles draw at the 2011 NCAA Championships. In addition, Berque coached Maravic, Hung, King and Jason Jung to multiple All-Big Ten honors during their respective careers.
Berque and his team have injected energy to the loyal fan base in Ann Arbor, as the Varsity Tennis Center reached record attendance numbers during the 2010-11 season, including a facility-record 687 fans for Michigan's match against No. 5 Texas on Jan. 22. Under Berque, attendance for home matches has constantly been ranked among the top-10 programs nationally, and best in the Big Ten.
Berque has stressed the importance of success in the classroom as well as on the court, with 17 Wolverines earning a combined 29 Academic All-Big Ten nominations in his first eight seasons at the helm. Eleven of Berque's student-athletes have also been named ITA Scholar-Athletes.
A native of Old Tappan, N.J., Berque was a member of the University of Illinois coaching staff for six seasons prior to his appointment at Michigan. After joining the Fighting Illini as a volunteer assistant coach in January of 1999, Berque served as the associate head coach under Craig Tiley for the next five years. During his tenure, Illinois captured four NCAA championships (one team, one singles and two doubles), two ITA National Team Indoor championships, six Big Ten regular-season titles, five league tournament titles and an NCAA-record 64 consecutive dual-match victories. Tiley and Berque brought Illinois its first-ever No. 1 ITA national ranking on February 27, 2002.
Following the 2002-03 campaign, which saw the Illini go undefeated at 32-0 and claim the NCAA and ITA National Team Indoor team titles, Berque was honored as the ITA National Assistant Coach of the Year. He is also a two-time ITA Midwest Regional Assistant Coach of the Year (2000, `03).
In addition to his collegiate coaching experience, Berque has worked as a personal coach for a number of ATP and WTA professionals, including Mark Merklein, who was ranked among the top 160 singles players in the world, and U.S. Open junior doubles champion David Martin. He was also a USA Player Development Coach from 1998-99, coaching players in national and international junior and professional events, including the Grand Slams. A USPTA and USPTR certified professional, Berque is a member of the USA Tennis High Performance Coaching program.
Berque graduated from Haverford College in 1988 with a bachelor's degree in sociology and anthropology.
THE BRUCE BERQUE FILE Born: April 28, 1966 Hometown: Old Tappan, New Jersey High School: Northern Valley Regional College: Haverford College (Pa.), 1988 Bachelor's Degree: Sociology and Anthropology
Collegiate Coaching Experience: University of Michigan (Head Men's Coach), 2004-present. University of Illinois (Associate Head Men's Coach), 1999-2004. Ohio State University (Volunteer Assistant Men's Coach), 1997-98. University of Florida (Assistant Men's Coach), 1990-96. Haverford College (Assistant Women's Coach), 1988-90.
Collegiate Coaching Highlights Coached Michigan to seven straight NCAA Championships appearances, including one Sweet 16 berth (2008) Led Michigan to top-four Big Ten finishes in seven of his eight seasons at Michigan. ITA Midwest Region Coach of the Year (2012) ITA National Assistant Coach of the Year (2003) ITA Midwest Regional Assistant Coach of the Year (2000, '03) Coached Illinois' 2003 NCAA championship team and 2003-04 ITA National Team Indoor championship teams Coached two NCAA singles champions (1994, 2003) and three NCAA doubles champions (1993, 2000, '03) Coached Illinois to NCAA Final Four (2004) Coached four teams to NCAA Elite Eight finishes (1991, '99-2000, '02) Coached Illinois to six straight Big Ten Conference regular-season championships (1999-2004) Coached Illinois to five Big Ten Conference tournament championships (1999-2000, '02-04) Coached Illinois to an NCAA-record 64 consecutive dual-match wins Coached 16 players to 31 ITA All-America nominations Coached three Big Ten Conference singles champions