Baylor men's tennis head coach Matt Knoll announced the hiring of Michael Woodson as assistant coach Wednesday.
Prior to coming to Waco, Woodson had been a member of the Valparaiso men’s tennis coaching staff since the 2012-13 season, after concluding a three-year career on the court for the Crusaders.
"Michael is a phenomenal young coach that is well-respected by his coaching peers," Knoll said. "His work ethic is unmatched and his success at Valparaiso is a true testament to that. His teams always play hard and compete for him and each other. His immediate impact on the Valparaiso squad makes him a perfect choice for our program here, and I look forward to working with him as we continue to build toward another national championship."
In May of 2015, Woodson was promoted to associate head coach and went on to help Valpo set a school-record for wins (22-6), claim conference regular season and tournament titles and earn the program’s first-ever NCAA Championship appearance.
"I'm beyond excited to join Baylor's illustrious tennis program and help them continue their dominance of the Big 12 while reaching for national championship heights annually,” Woodson said. “I want to thank Coach Matt Knoll and the administration for giving me the opportunity, and I look forward to making an immediate impact. I also want to thank Valparaiso University and Head Coach Jim Daugherty for giving me the resources and support to grow as a young coach. Again, I'm extremely grateful to be coaching at Baylor University and to have the opportunity to work with and learn from one of the legendary head coaches in collegiate tennis."
All told in his four years as a Crusader assistant, Woodson’s teams racked up a 73-34 record. He had five players earn first team All-Horizon League accolades and three more card second-team honors. Nineteen times Valparaiso players won conference Player of the Week honors under Woodson.
Individually, Woodson helped Jeffrey Schorsch become the winningest singles player in school history and win back-to-back Horizon League Player of the Year honors. He also guided Charlie Ernhardt break the all-time doubles win record at Valpo. Meanwhile, Woodson’s student-athletes also secured a pair of league Freshman of the Year awards during his Valpo tenure.
During his playing career with the Crusaders, Woodson was a three-year starter who split time between No. 5 and 6 singles, while appearing at No. 2 and 3 doubles for the Brown and Gold. For his senior season, Woodson was named a team captain for the Crusaders.
Woodson was recognized with the Bill Steinbrecher Sportsmanship Award at the conclusion of his senior year, presented to a male student-athlete who has best exemplified integrity and sportsmanship while representing Valparaiso University. He also was the recipient of the athletic department's Laurel Award, which honors the graduating senior student-athlete with the highest cumulative grade point average.
Woodson graduated from Valparaiso in May of 2012 as a triple major in biology, chemistry and exercise science.
Woodson joins a BU program that has won 21 Big 12 Championships and reached the NCAA Round of 16 in 14 of the last 15 years, including five trips to the NCAA semifinals in that stretch and the 2004 national title. He replaces Dominik Mueller, who served as Knoll’s top assistant for five seasons and left the program earlier this month to become the head coach at Old Dominion University.