Chadwick To Leave Legacy Beyond The Wins And Hardware

OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM Ole Miss men's tennis coach Billy Chadwick will step down at the end of the 2014 season.
OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM
Ole Miss men's tennis coach Billy Chadwick will step down at the end of the 2014 season.
OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM

Jan. 13, 2014

By Austin Miller, OleMissSports.com

OXFORD, Miss. -- The face of Ole Miss men's tennis, head coach Billy Chadwick will step down at the end of the 2014 season, having coached at Ole Miss for 34 years, including 30 years at the helm of the men's program.

In 1983, when he took over the program, they were last in the Southeastern Conference. The Rebels broke into the national rankings in 1986. His first recruit, Dave Randall, who went on to become the first Mississippian to advance at Wimbledon, Chadwick said, took the program to the next level, leading them to their first NCAA Team Championship appearance in 1989.

The defining moment for the program, Chadwick said, was the 1995 NCAA Semifinal match against the home team, Georgia, as Ole Miss went on to advance to the finals of the NCAA Team Championships.

"The Rebs were up 6-5 in the third set, and we have match point," Chadwick recalled. "We hit a winner, and it was 6,000 people silent. And then the most amazing thing happened: They stood up and gave us a standing ovation.

"Many said it was the greatest match they had every witnessed. It was one of those moments that I sit and look back, and that was the defining moment for Ole Miss tennis. Since then, we haven't looked back."

Including 1995, Chadwick's teams have made 20 consecutive NCAA appearances, and his teams have finished ranked in the nation's top five seven times, and have earned a top-10 ranking 15 times. The Rebels have won 18 Southeastern Conference team titles, including five overall SEC Championships, 10 Western Division titles and three SEC Tournament Championships.

"I have looked up to him since I was a kid" said former player Devin Britton, the 2009 NCAA Singles Champion. "He's been the face of Ole Miss tennis. It will be different without him. It is sad to see him go. He has definitely put his time in and he's been one of the best coaches in college tennis. You look at his body of work, and it's incredible what he has accomplished.

"I wouldn't have accomplished all I did if I had not come to Ole Miss and played for Coach Chadwick, so I give him a lot of credit for a lot of my results.  I'm just happy to be a part of his legacy."

When Chadwick stepped to the podium and looked around the M-Club Room in the Starnes Athletic Center at the announcement Monday, he saw what he calls the Ole Miss family, and that's what he said this program is all about and has always been about.

"When I sit back and think about all the kids that have come through, that is what I'm most proud of," Chadwick said. "Every single one of these kids that have come through, they have been great on the court, they have been great students, and they have been great ambassadors for Ole Miss."

"I have been around long enough to know that you care about them, not only about playing tennis, but you care about them as student-athletes and their performance in the classroom and performance in life," Chancellor Dan Jones said.

Associate head coach Toby Hansson, in his eighth year with the men's program, will succeed Chadwick at the end of the 2014 season.

"I'm really glad he stayed this long and will finish this season as well. It's been seven years, going on eight years, as associate head coach, and I would not have minded staying for another couple of years.  It's been an amazing journey," Hansson said.

With the start of the 2014 season less than a week away, Chadwick, Hansson and the team are focused on the task at hand and sending Chadwick out on a high note.

"I told them I want to make this our best spring," Chadwick said. "I challenged them. I want to go out on top. I want to push this thing hard. I told Nik Scholtz; I said, `You listen to me and you listen to me close: The very last match of the year is the finals of the NCAA in singles. You're going to be playing in it and you're going to win it.'"

"Everybody is getting a little bit of a boost from this," Hansson said. "Billy makes the players feel like they want to play for him, more so maybe this year when they know that he's going to be leaving after this year. They want to make this year a special year. They're all excited about that, so there will be an extra boost."

Austin Miller is a writer and blogger for OleMissSports.com. He joined the staff in June 2013 after serving as sports editor of the Daily Mississippian. Follow him on Twitter @austinkmiller

Ole Miss Gear
    Facebook
    Twitter
    Blog
    • Ole Miss Athletics Week in Review (April 28-May 4, 2015)

      Monday, May 4, 2015 - Athletics

      Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewApril 28-May 4, 2015Baseball - The Rebels started the week defeating the Bulldogs, 11-1 in the annual Governor's Cup. The 10-run win for the Rebels marked the largest margin of victory in the 36-year history... read more

    • VIDEO: Rebel Road Trip 2015

      Monday, May 4, 2015 - Athletics

      Rebel Road Trip 2015 from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo.... read more

    • More on Steelers' Selection of Golson

      Friday, May 1, 2015 - Football

      Welcome to Pittsburgh...and welcome to #SteelersNation, @Quez_G! #SteelersDraft pic.twitter.com/oY8wZc10Kk-- Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) May 2, 2015 Congrats Senquez Golson! Drafted 56th overall in the 2015 #NFLDRAFT by the Pittsburgh Steelers. #HottyToddy #FinsUp pic.twitter.com/EPGayDNOu7-- Ole Miss Football (@OleMissFB) May 2, 2015 Ole... read more

    • Six Rebels Among Inaugural Scott County HOF Class

      Wednesday, April 29, 2015 - Athletics

      Six men with ties to Ole Miss were part of the inaugural class of 25 athletes and coaches inducted into the Scott County Hall of Fame this past Saturday at Roosevelt State Park in Morton. It is believed that this... read more

    • Freeze, Tuohy Conclude Play at Charity Golf Tournament

      Tuesday, April 28, 2015 - Football

      In a tie for 7th place at 7-under, @OleMissFB takes home $30,000 in charity and scholarship. #CFAPBGolf pic.twitter.com/qd0JzilyYR-- #CFAPBGolf (@CFAPeachBowl) April 28, 2015 The Ole Miss team of head football coach Hugh Freeze and Sean Tuohy turned in a strong... read more

    • Tennis Teams React to NCAA Tournament Selections

      Tuesday, April 28, 2015 - Men's Tennis

      The Ole Miss men's and women's tennis team learned their postseason destinations, as the men's and women's NCAA Tournament fields were announced Tuesday. The men, ranked No. 13 in the nation, are the No. 14 overall seed and will be... read more

    • Ole Miss Athletics Week in Review (April 21-27, 2015)

      Tuesday, April 28, 2015 - Athletics

      Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewApril 21-27, 2015Baseball - During the five-game homestand, Ole Miss went 3-2 with a midweek win over Central Arkansas as well as claiming a weekend series over Alabama.  - The Rebels recorded 68 hits throughout... read more

    • Freeze Wins Long Drive Competition

      Monday, April 27, 2015 - Football

      With a distance of 287-yards, the 2015 #CFAPBGolf Coaches Division Long Drive Champion is @CoachHughFreeze! pic.twitter.com/ProCdgbbg9-- #CFAPBGolf (@CFAPeachBowl) April 27, 2015 Ole Miss head football coach Hugh Freeze took home the long drive title at the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl Challenge... read more

    • Observations from the Best Seat in the House -- April 26

      Sunday, April 26, 2015 - Athletics

      Hugh Freeze and Ross Bjork embarked on the Rebel Road Trip, the baseball team claimed their weekend series over Alabama that featured the largest crowd of the season and the football program's NFL presence is expected to grow with the... read more

    • Bramlett Helps Rebels Complete DH Sweep, Clinch Series

      Sunday, April 26, 2015 - Baseball

      Ole Miss swept a doubleheader Saturday, defeating Alabama 10-2 in Game One and 4-0 in Game Two. As a pitching staff, the Rebels allowed just one earned run and scattered a combined 12 hits with 17 strikeouts compared to just... read more

    • Freeze, Tuohy to Rep Ole Miss at Charity Golf Tournament

      Friday, April 24, 2015 - Football

      Ole Miss head football coach Hugh Freeze will team with former All-SEC basketball player Sean Tuohy to represent the Rebels for the fourth straight year and compete for a share of the $520,000 total purse in the ninth annual Chick-fil-A... read more

    • VIDEO: Ole Miss Football Season Tickets Promo

      Wednesday, April 22, 2015 - Football

      read more

    • VIDEO: Ole Miss Baseball Stars Wars Night Intro

      Wednesday, April 22, 2015 - Baseball

      read more

    • Ole Miss Athletics Week in Review (April 14-20, 2015)

      Monday, April 20, 2015 - Athletics

      Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewApril 14-20, 2015Men's Tennis- Ole Miss downed No. 22 Vanderbilt 4-1 to advance to the SEC Tournament semifinals for the 16th time in program history.- The Rebels rallied to take the doubles point and then got... read more

    • Rebels Continue Push to Host in NCAA's

      Thursday, April 16, 2015 - Men's Tennis

      With a split of road matches at South Carolina and No. 8 Georgia, the Ole Miss men's tennis team moved up one spot to No. 13 in the nation entering the Southeastern Conference Men's Tennis Championship this week in College... read more