Texas Tech’s Director of Athletics Kirby Hocutt announced new changes to the Red Raider tennis programs on Wednesday after the departure of men’s tennis head coach Brett Masi.
One of the biggest changes to the programs was women’s head coach Todd Petty being promoted to the position of Director of Tennis, according to a Tech Athletics news release. With the role, Petty will oversee the men’s and women’s programs while still coaching the Lady Raiders.
“This is a challenge that I’ve been excited to take on if it ever presented itself,” Petty said, according to the release. “I’ve always respected the men’s program here at Texas Tech and the history they’ve had. To be able to serve in a role where I can help grow both of these programs and build them even further is something that after 12 years at Texas Tech is something I’m excited to take on.”
As he takes on his new role, Petty will also enter his 12th season with the Lady Raiders after coaching the women’s tennis team to eight consecutive NCAA Tournament bids, making it the longest program streak, according to the release. In the NCAA Tournament, Petty and the Lady Raiders made it to the Sweet 16 four times and Elite Eight twice.
While with the women’s tennis team, Petty became Tech’s winningest coach as he posted a 208-91 overall record with the Lady Raiders, according to the release. Adding on to his 208 wins with the Lady Raiders, Petty has coached the team to five seasons with 20 or more wins. He has also coached the women’s team to three Big 12 regular-season championships and the program’s first Big 12 tournament title.
Adding to his resume with Tech, Petty was named the Big 12 Coach of the Year and Wilson/ITA Texas Region Coach of the Year three times each, according to the release. Under Petty’s guidance, the Lady Raiders have finished in the ITA top-25 final rankings six times in the last eight seasons, with two top-10 finishes in the last three seasons.
Along with Petty’s promotion, Hocutt announced Daniel Whitehead as the men’s tennis teams new head coach, according to the release.
“It’s an honor to lead this team,” Whiteside said, according to the release. “I know these men in the locker room better than any coach in the country, and I am thrilled to lead them. You come to Texas Tech to compete at the highest level in the country, that’s what we will continue to build on. I want to thank Todd Petty for his help the past couple years and moving forward, and I want to thank Kirby Hocutt for believing in me and giving me this opportunity. This is all a blessing, and I’m ready to fight for this team, university and Lubbock.”
Whitehead was the Red Raiders’ assistant coach over the last two seasons as he helped the team make back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances, according to the release. While an assistant coach, Whitehead helped guide the Red Raiders to a 19-11 record in his first season and a 15-12 record last season.
This is not Whitehead’s first head coaching job as he was the head coach of the men’s and women’s tennis teams at Concordia University in Austin from 2015 to 2017, according to the release. In his two years at Concordia, he coached both teams to program records in single-season wins. Among the two teams, eight American Southwest All-Conference awards were earned under his watch as both teams participated in the ASC Tournament in their 2016-17 season.
Before becoming a head coach at Concordia, Whitehead was an assistant coach for Houston’s women’s tennis team for two seasons (2013-15), according to the release. Whitehead helped coach the Cougars to one of the best seasons in program history in his first year on the coaching staff with as Houston finished with a 21-6 overall record. The 21-win season led to Houston making it to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 1998. In his second season with Houston, the Cougars recorded a perfect record in the American Athletic Conference, leading to an ITA top-40 ranking.
As Petty and Whitehead take on new roles this season, Hocutt announced that the men’s and women’s tennis teams will have a combined coaching staff, according to the release. The women’s team’s assistant coach Melissa Kopinski will remain on the coaching staff as a fourth coach has not yet been named.
Both the men’s and women’s tennis teams will start their seasons at the Midland Regional in Midland, Texas from Sep. 13-15. Specific times and other teams participating in the Invitational have not been announced.