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Arlo Elkins has made a dramatic impact during his 20-year tenure at South Carolina. Elkins, 54, has posted a 312-207 record at USC.  The 312 wins not only rank first among coaches at USC, but also rank first among all Division I coaches in the state of South Carolina.  He has proven that he is a winner, and his winning attitude has made USC one of the most consistent programs in the country.

Elkins has guided South Carolina to nine straight NCAA Tournament appearances, the 11th longest active streak in NCAA history.  During the streak, USC has recorded a winning percentage of .500 or better each of those seasons.  Even more impressive is that South Carolina has been to a total of 11 NCAA Tournament appearances since Elkins began coaching in 1984, 19th best among all Division I women’s tennis teams.  Elkins has also guided the Gamecocks to Top 25 finishes in 15 of the past 17 seasons.  While in the Metro Conference, the Gamecocks won five league titles in six years.  In his 20 seasons, Elkins has always had a team or individuals compete in the NCAA Tournament.  Elkins has made an impact by making South Carolina one of the most consistent teams in the nation and by ranking among the nation’s top coaches.

Elkins won his 300th match on February 5, 2003, establishing him in an elite group of coaches.  He became only the twenty-second coach in NCAA division I Women’s Tennis history with 300 wins and was the  twentieth coach to ever reach 300 at one school.

Elkins has proven that his teams can compete with top ranked-teams in the country.  An Elkins coached team has combined for four wins against the number one and number two ranked teams in the country.  In 2002, the Gamecocks recorded three total victories against the final four teams in the 2002 NCAA Division I Women’s Tennis Championship.  To beat the best, you have to have good talent, and Elkins has searched for top talent throughout the years.

Elkins has had an eye for talent as he coached many players who have gone on to receive various awards during their tennis careers.  Four of his players have been named to the All-SEC in singles while three double teams have also received the same honor.  Two athletes have been named to the GTA Academic All-Americans.  Since 1984, there have been a total of 32 players listed in the final national rankings in singles while 12 double teams have been ranked including NCAA semi-finalist. 

Elkins believes in winning on the court but he believes the main goal of a student-athlete is to excel in the classroom. Since South Carolina joined the SEC in 1992, the Gamecocks have had 53 players named to the SEC Academic Honor Roll.  The USC women’s tennis team has the number one athletic program at USC in terms of total team GPA for 16 consecutive seasons entering the 2003 season.

Elkins has also received many awards during his tenure in the Palmetto State.  In 1988, Elkins won the USPTA Southern Division Coach of the Year while also winning the 1988 USTA South Carolina College Coach of the Year.  He became the first head coach at USC in any sport to win the SEC Coach of the Year Award in 1995.  Elkins is also a three-time ITA Southeast Region Coach of the Year winner (1988, 1994, 1996).  In 1996, Elkins received the South Carolina Pro Tennis Association Coach of the Year award.

Before becoming a coach, Elkins played professionally and competed in the main draw at Wimbledon and the French Open.  He also competed in over 50 different countries throughout the world.  In 1978, Elkins ranked among the top 200 in the world.  In the state of South Carolina, Elkins ranked number one in singles, doubles, and mixed doubles in Men’s Open 25 and 35 year old age groups.

After leaving the professional circuit, Elkins accepted a post as Tennis Director at Columbia’s Spring Valley Country Club.  Elkins was named the fifth coach at USC in 1984 and has resided in South Carolina since 1979.  Elkins is married and has three children.

 

 
 
 
 
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