Jensen named tennis coach at Syracuse

Updated: August 29, 2006, 10:35 AM ET
Associated Press

SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- Luke Jensen, nicknamed "Dual Hand Luke" for his ambidextrous play as a pro and a member of the United States Davis Cup team in the early 1990s, was named head tennis coach at Syracuse University on Tuesday.

"This is an unbelievable announcement for us to have someone with the experience and the knowledge of tennis like Luke Jensen," Syracuse director of athletics Daryl Gross said. "To bring him to the Syracuse community is incredible."

Jensen's credentials includes 10 ATP Tour doubles titles and singles victories against some of the top names in the game -- Andre Agassi, Pete Sampras, Ivan Lendl, John McEnroe, Bjorn Borg, Jimmy Connors, Boris Becker, Stefan Edberg and Jim Courier.

Able to serve with either hand at 130 miles per hour, Jensen also teamed with his brother, Murphy, to win the 1993 French Open doubles title.

"We are looking for impact people to better this world through the game of tennis and to better the people around them. That is why I am here," said Jensen, who also serves as an analyst for ESPN. "When student athletes leave here, they will be ready for life's challenges because of their education here -- in the classroom and in tennis.They will have life skills."

Born in Grayling, Mich., Jensen conducts more than 70 charity events, seminars and tennis clinics around the world each year. He is also involved in the Jensen-Schmidt Tennis Academy for Down Syndrome.

A 1985 graduate of East Grand Rapids High School in Michigan, Jensen reached the second round of the U.S. Open just before enrolling at the University of Southern California, where he earned All-America honors in 1987 and 1988.

Jensen won the 1983 Michigan High School State Singles Championship and earned high school All-America recognition. The following year, he was the top-ranked junior singles and doubles player in the world, teaming with Patrick McEnroe in doubles.

Current Syracuse coach Mac Gifford, who has been part of the Orange program as an assistant coach and head coach for the past 13 years, will serve as associate head coach and director of tennis operations.


Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press