DeHeart and wife, Megan Fudge, look to advance to US Open
Ryler DeHeart, a two-time All-American at Illinois and five-year ATP Tour professional, enters his second season as assistant coach of the Crimson Tide men's tennis team.
In DeHeart's first season at The Capstone, Alabama returned to the NCAA Championship tournament for the first time since 2010 and finished with four more wins than it had in the previous season. In addition to its team success, the Tide also had several individuals recognized as Jarryd Botha and David Vieyra earned All-America status in doubles, Botha and Becker O'Shaughnessey All-SEC honors and Daniil Proskura SEC Scholar-Athlete of the Year and winner of the ITA Arthur Ashe Leadership & Sportsmanship Award for the southern region.
DeHeart, who has competed in all four Grand Slams, turned professional in 2006 and reached a career-high ranking of 174 in singles and 120 in doubles. He competed against then-No. 1 Rafael Nadal in the second round of the 2008 U.S. Open and has beaten numerous top-100 players such as John Isner and Alex Bogomolov.
The Kauai, Hawai'i, native graduated from the University of Illinois in 2006 with a degree in psychology. DeHeart won the ITA Intercollegiate Indoor Singles Championship and ranked No. 1 in the nation in singles in 2005 and 2006. He remains the winningest singles player in Illinois history with 138 victories while also breaking the record for most singles wins in a season as he collected 42 as a junior during the 2004-05 campaign.
In addition to being named an All-American in 2005 and 2006, DeHeart was honored as the 2006 Farnsworth/ITA Midwest Region Senior Player of the Year, the 2005 and 2006 Big Ten Athlete of the Year, the 2006 ITA John Van Nostrand Memorial Award winner, and recipient of the 2002 Bill Talbert National Junior Sportsmanship Award. He also was a three-time All-Big Ten selection.
After retiring from the professional tour, DeHeart, along with his wife Megan Fudge, founded and coached at RD Tennis, a junior high performance program in Tampa, Florida.