July 14, 2014
MADISON, Wis. -- Wisconsin head men’s tennis coach Greg Van Emburgh announced Monday that he has hired Scoville Jenkins as the Badgers’ new assistant coach. A former professional tennis player on the ATP tour, Jenkins comes to Madison after coaching stints at Kennesaw State and Washington.
“We’re thrilled to add Scoville to our program,” Van Emburgh said. “It's exciting to have an assistant coach with the same vision and intentions that I have moving this program forward again. Scoville comes with high-level playing and coaching experience and is known as a great leader. I am really excited for our student athletes and we are very fortunate to have him joining our program.”
“I’m extremely excited to join the University of Wisconsin athletic department,” Jenkins said. “I’m honored and humbled to be a part of such a great school and athletic department. Wisconsin really puts an emphasis on both academic and athletic success and that is something that is very important to me as well.
“I want to thank Coach Van Emburgh, Marija Pientka and Barry Alvarez for this opportunity. I can’t wait to work with them and help return Wisconsin to the success and high standards that Coach Van Emburgh has set there.”
Following his professional playing career, Jenkins enrolled in school at Kennesaw State in 2010 and was also hired as an assistant coach. After two seasons as a student and coach with the Owls, Jenkins transferred to the University of Washington where he earned his bachelor’s degree in sociology in June of 2014 and served as a volunteer assistant coach with the Huskies.
“I couldn't be more positive about Scoville,” Washington head coach Matt Anger said. “With his experience, intelligence and demeanor, it is only a matter of time before he is a top coach in collegiate tennis. We only wish he was still a part of our program.”
Jenkins’ professional career began at an early age, as he won the 2004 Boys' 18 USTA National Hard Court singles championship, becoming the first African-American to ever win the title in the tournament's 89-year history. Two weeks later at the age of 17, he faced Andy Roddick in the opening round of the U.S. Open.
A six-year professional, Jenkins reached the No. 187 ATP ranking and made appearances in both the U.S. Open and French Open. He faced some of the top names in tennis, including Roddick, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Jarkko Nieminen and Jonas Bjorkman. In 2005, Jenkins defeated Swiss veteran George Bastl in the first round of the U.S. Open before falling to Nadal in the second round.
Jenkins has several ranked victories on his resume including No. 12-ranked Dominik Hrbaty, No. 13-ranked Nieminen and No. 18-ranked Vince Spadea. The Atlanta, Georgia, native also has wins over Donald Young and Alexander Peya in the 2009 BNP Paribas Open.
Prior to retiring in the summer of 2010, Jenkins was a member of the New York Buzz in the World Team Tennis league, partnering with multiple grand slam winner Martina Hingis in mixed doubles.