July 7, 2004
Tallahasse, Fla. – Florida State Athletics Director Dave Hart has announced the hiring of former Seminole Jennifer Hyde as the new head coach of the women’s tennis program. A 1995 graduate of Florida State, Hyde returns to Tallahassee from the University of Houston where she spent the last five seasons as the head coach. She brings with her a wealth of coaching experience after also assisting at four other universities in three different conferences – the SEC, the Big 10 and the ACC.
“I am extremely excited to be coming back to Florida State as the head women’s tennis coach,” Hyde said. “Having my career come full circle and to be back where my collegiate playing and coaching experiences first began is such a thrill. I feel a great deal of pride to once again be associated with an athletics program of this caliber. I look forward to continuing to build on the success of this tennis program and to take this team to even greater heights.”
Hyde becomes the fifth head coach of the Seminole program which began in the late 1970s. She replaces Lise Gregory, who left Tallahassee to pursue other interests after eight successful seasons at Florida State.
“Jennifer’s enthusiasm is contagious,” Florida State Senior Associate Athletics Director Kim Record said. “As a Seminole student-athlete, she captained our most successful team on the court. Her love for Florida State and the coaching experience she has gained over the last 10 years make her the best person to lead our tennis program to the next level.”
The 2003-04 campaign proved to be Hyde’s most successful at Houston, on and off the court. Hyde led the Cougars to a third-place finish in Conference USA and the program’s most dual match wins since 1997. The level of play Houston faced in 2003-04 was also the toughest the program had ever faced. In the classroom, her team achieved the highest GPA in the history of the athletics department and earned annual team academic All-America status.
Hyde was a four-year letter winner for the Seminoles from 1991-94, a successful era for women’s tennis at Florida State. During the 1993 season, Hyde and teammate Jenny Graf were runner-up ACC flight champions at number two doubles. She was a 1994 NCAA Championship participant and also served as the Seminoles’ team captain that same season. FSU concluded the 1994 season with a final national ranking of No. 17, the highest finish to date for a Florida State women’s tennis team. Hyde graduated from FSU with a degree in leisure services and studies with an emphasis in recreational management with a minor in psychology.
After her collegiate playing career at Florida State, Hyde began her coaching career at her alma mater where she served as a graduate assistant coach. She went on to assistant coaching stints with the women’s programs at the University of Iowa (1995-97), the University of Alabama (1997-98) and the University of North Carolina (1998-99). At UNC, she was part of the most successful women’s tennis season in the program’s history at that point. Hyde was instrumental in progressing a previously unranked Tar Heel team to a top 25 national ranking and the school’s first-ever tennis berth in the NCAA tournament, where they won their first-round match. As the recruiting coordinator at North Carolina, she identified and signed a top five nationally ranked junior and a top three nationally ranked Australian junior.
An Alpharetta, Ga., native, Hyde, an ITA and NCAA Southwest Region Selection Committee member, enjoys playing golf, traveling, hiking and boating. She will assume her new position on July 17th.