AUM names new tennis coach

MONTGOMERY, Ala. ­­-- Auburn University at Montgomery Athletics Director Steve Crotz has announced the hiring of Rolando Vargas to the position of head coach for the Senators' and Lady Senators' tennis programs.

Vargas joins the AUM staff after spending the past year at the Montgomery Country Club, where he was the head tennis professional.

"Coach Vargas brings considerable experience to our men's and women's tennis programs from both the collegiate ranks and the private sector," Crotz said of the addition of Vargas. "He has enjoyed success as a player, coach and private instructor. He is committed to the academic and athletic develop of our student-athletes. I am very impressed with his caring nature for the student-athlete and his focus on the total person. We are excited to have Rolando as a member of our athletic family."

During his year at the Montgomery Country Club, Vargas developed and conducted private lessons and group clinics for all ages, while also evaluating players to improve individual techniques and strategies. He was also responsible for coordinating schedule competitions held at the venue.

Prior to joining the county club, Vargas spent three seasons as an assistant tennis coach at Troy University. While working with the Trojans, his duties included the development of training and conditioning programs, scouting and evaluation of opponents and skill development for both the men's and women's teams. He also assisted in the recruiting process and assisted in summer camps. With Vargas on staff, the Troy women's tennis team captured the Atlantic Sun Conference Championship in 2004, while earning a national team ranking by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) in 2008.

Vargas joined the coaching ranks following a standout playing career at Troy and Bethune-Cookman University.

During his playing career with the Trojans, he compiled a 34-18 overall singles record, while amassing a 26-20 record in doubles matches. Vargas earned singles victories against the former top players from Texas Tech, Florida, Tulane, Texas, North Carolina and LSU, in addition to a doubles victory over the then top-10 nationally ranked tandem for the University of Alabama. He was also named the Rookie of the Year at BCU after posting the top singles winning percentage on the team as a freshman.

In addition to his collegiate playing, Vargas also sports an impressive international resume, as he has won numerous national tournaments and earned a No. 5 ranking in Mexico from 2004-07. As a player, he defeated Davis Cup players from Canada, England, South Africa, Paraguay, Venezuela, Guatemala, Bolivia, Norway, New Zealand, Bahamas and Mexico.

Vargas earned his bachelor's degree in international business from Troy in 2004 and later added his master's degree in sport and fitness management, from which he graduated magna cum laude.

"I'm very excited to join such a strong team and program," Vargas said. "This is a very good opportunity for me and I appreciate the confidence that the committee has shown me. I hope to bring my experience and hard work ethic to the help the program succeed in the years to come."