Crimson Tide will play its first dual matches of the season at 9 a.m. and Noon
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 first season as assistant coach of the Crimson Tide men's tennis team.
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 US 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 win 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 also 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 was also a three-time All-Big Ten selection.
For the past year and a half, since 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.