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UMass' Judy Dixon to Retire Following 2016-17 Tennis Season

Release: 09/13/2016
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Courtesy: Massachusetts
AMHERST, Massachusetts The all-time winningest head coach in the history of the UMass women's tennis program, Judy Dixon, announced today that she will retire following the 2016-17 campaign. Dixon enters the upcoming season, her 25th with the Minutewomen, with a record of 304-219 in Amherst.
"I would like to thank Judy for her remarkable service to this University and our athletics program for a quarter-century," Director of Athletics Ryan Bamford said. "Her retirement marks the end of a highly successful run in women's – and at one time men's – tennis at UMass. On behalf of the hundreds of student-athletes that played tennis at UMass and those colleagues who worked with her over the last 25 years, we thank Judy and wish her all the best in retirement. She will always have our respect and admiration."
Though she will no longer serve as the head coach of the program, Dixon will still be actively involved in tennis in the greater Amherst area and at UMass. She will participate in the search process to name her replacement this spring.
"I am proud of the success of the men's and women's team, both on and off the court," said Dixon. "However, what has meant the most to me is the opportunity to engage daily with young adults, to help guide them through their four years of college and to stay connected with them as they move into productive lives. As I look back on my 25 years, what stays with me the most is the camaraderie, caring and commitment I have witnessed. Truly, I have been a lucky person."
Dixon first arrived at UMass in 1992-93 and also served as the head coach of the men's program from 1993-2001.
In addition to her 300-plus wins, the New Jersey native led the Minutewomen to the lone Atlantic 10 title in program history (2001), two New England Championships (1996, 2001) and a berth to the NCAA Tournament (2001). She has been named the Atlantic 10 Coach of the Year five times and was inducted into the USTA New England Hall of Fame in 2008.
Dixon's players have earned tremendous success during her tenure: two A-10 Performers of the Year, four A-10 Rookies of the Year, 15 A-10 Academic All-Conference, 40 A-10 All-Conference selections and 47 ITA Scholar-Athletes,
As the men's coach, Dixon was 95-90 overall leading the program to the New England Championship in 1997.
Dixon began her coaching career in 1973-74 at Yale where she spent three seasons and led the Bulldogs to the 1976 Ivy League title.
Along with a successful coaching career, Dixon has also spent time as a touring professional. She competed in the U.S. Open and Wimbledon, and was also on the Virginia Slims Tour.
From 1975-80, the former doubles partner of Billie Jean King was a delegate to the United States Collegiate Sports Council, assisting in the selection of coaches and players for the World University Games. She also served as a clinician for the United States Tennis Association (USTA) Training Center in 1990. In 2000, she was on the ITA Operating Board. Currently, she is on the New England Tennis Association Collegiate Committee.
During her career, Dixon has been active in national tennis having been involved running corporate clinics at the U.S. Open with past World Champions, including Virginia Wade, Chris Evert and King. She was also involved with the Women's Sports Foundation, where she participated in fundraising with Evert and King. In 2003, she coached the Philadelphia Freedoms of World Team Tennis.
Away from the tennis scene, Dixon has also enjoyed a career as a journalist. In 1975, she became the first woman nominated for an Emmy Award in Sports Broadcasting for her PBS color commentary at the Spalding International Mixed Doubles Championship. She was also the first woman ever to do color commentary for a professional sports team -- the Boston Lobsters of World Team Tennis. Dixon served as the play-by-play announcer at NBC for the 1976 NCAA Women's Basketball National Championship. She has also been a contributing writer for Sportswoman Magazine and a guest commentator on ABC's "Eye on Sport."
Dixon graduated from the University of Southern California with a bachelor's degree in psychology in 1973. A three-year letterwinner for the Trojans, she played both first singles and doubles at USC. The 1967 Junior National Champion claimed the 1973 Pacific Eight doubles title.
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