Former Indiana University men's assistant tennis coach Patric Hynes has been named Lee University's new men's and women's head tennis coach.
"I'm very pleased that Patric is joining our team at Lee," said Dr. Paul Conn, president of Lee University. "He is an outstanding young coach who will bring lots of college-level experience to our tennis programs.
"I believe he and his family will be a great fit at Lee; he knows what kind of campus culture we have here, and I believe he will build a competitive NCAA Division II program on the foundation that (former Lee coach) Tony Cavett laid over the last several years in NAIA."
A 2000 graduate of Lees-McRae College (Banner Elk, N.C.), Hynes became the winningest singles player in Lees-McRae history. He also was ranked in the top 50 in NCAA Division II singles, and top 20 in doubles. He excelled in the classroom as well, posting a 3.63 cumulative GPA and graduated summa cum laude.
He worked as the assistant men's and women's tennis coach at Lee-McRae (2002-03) before being promoted to the men's head job (2003-04).
Before making the move to Indiana and serving as an assistant for four years (2011-14), Hynes directed both the men's and women's programs at Presbyterian College (Clinton, S.C.); two seasons over both programs and six years as the men's coach. As a Division II program, his team won the South Atlantic Conference Championship from 2005-07. He was voted the SAC Coach of the Year in 2006. While helping produce 17 ITA Scholar Athletes and one ITA All-American, Hynes was a force in overseeing the college's transition to NCAA Division I in 2007.
In 2009, Hynes was promoted to Presbyterian's Director of Tennis and worked with both the men's and women's team. Against Division 1 competition, Hynes recruited the Big South Player of the Year, Grayson Mills. His 2010 and 2011 men's teams claimed the Big South Sportsmanship award.
Married and the father of two children, Hynes was asked what led him to Lee? "The fact that the school is strongly aligned with its Christian mission, along with the recent transition to Division II and membership in one of the strongest conferences (GSC) in the country," he replied. "This combined with the strong tradition of academics and tennis made Lee an appealing choice for my family."
The new Lee coach said he was impressed with the tight-knit feeling of the campus community. "It was immediately apparent that Lee is a special place, and the people genuinely love to be there. We also appreciated the amount of time Mr. (Larry) Carpenter (Lee director of athletics) spent with us and his willingness to show my entire family around campus," he added.
Hynes quickly pointed out that he would be moving to the Cleveland area as quickly as possible and can't wait to get started. He stressed that his first official act as head coach would be all about the players. "I'm sure they are anxious to find out more about their new coach. I can't wait to get to know all of them, so I plan on picking up the phone and contacting them as soon as possible."
Of course completing his overall roster for the upcoming 2015 season is a big challenge. "We'll start by identifying the players that we think have the tools to make us successful and represent Lee in the right way, on and off the court," he explained. "I'm looking forward to getting out to some tournaments and finding our next recruiting class."
Fielding teams that will be competitive in the Gulf South Conference (GSC) is already driving the newest Lee athletic staff member. "We plan on being competitive as quickly as possible," he said. "We have great respect for what the other teams in the GSC have achieved and we will be striving to give our young men and women the same experiences."
Hynes said in closing: "I am honored to be the new men's and women's tennis coach at Lee University. I would like to thank (coach) Carpenter and the entire search committee for their belief in my vision. I look forward to working closely with Lee University's student-athletes, and ensuring that they have a great college experience."
Carpenter also said: "I would like to thank the search committee for a tremendous job during this process. We received 69 applications and had several outstanding candidates. It was a difficult decision but I believe the committee made a wonderful recommendation to Dr. Conn.
"Coach Hynes brings a wealth of experience, having coached at NAIA, NCAA DII and DI schools. He's a proven winner and knows what it will take to succeed in the very competitive Gulf South Conference.
"He understands the mission of our university and will fit in well with our coaching staff. We are excited and looking forward to having Patric and his family join the Lee family."