December, 2006

When John Isner enters a room in his University of Georgia attire, people tend to look at his height (6'9") and presume he's on the basketball team, but after a few minutes of watching him on the court it's clear that he's playing the right sport. The Bulldogs number one player has been at the top of the ITA Rankings all along and he's climbing even higher in his senior year, holding the spot as the highest ranked American male.

Before attending the University of Georgia John Isner had a good junior tennis career that included reaching the finals of the doubles championship at Kalamazoo (with Pramod Dabir). The Greensboro, North Carolina, native quickly adjusted to campus life and wasted no time picking up wins. As a freshman John won the Southern Intercollegiates doubles title and made the NCAA finals with partner Bo Hodge; was named SEC Freshman of the Year and was a doubles All-American. He outdid these accomplishments in his sophomore year as he won the SEC and NCAA Doubles Championships with Antonio Ruiz (the duo was also named ITA National Team of the Year); became All-American in singles & doubles; and was given the ITA National Singles Player To Watch Award.

The college tennis career of John Isner just got better and better. In addition to repeating his All-American status and picking up a trophy at the Southern Intercollegiates for the third year in a row, John held a 29-match winning streak in his Junior year -- never losing a dual match. He also won the ITA All-American National Singles Championships. The 21 year old has decided to go it even better in his senior year and has already made that a reality by picking up wins at the first two majors of the year -- doubles crowns at the Polo Ralph Lauren ITA All-Americans and the ITA National Indoors with partner Luis Flores (he was also a singles finalist at the former.

John Isner and I sat down at the ITA National Indoors (and then followed up with a phone interview) to talk about his college tennis career, the upcoming Georgia-hosted NCAAs and his plans for after graduation.

by Marcia Frost


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