For the second year in a row, men’s tennis coach Steve Francour was named Coach of the Year by the Midwest Conference. The team had a 5-3 record in the conference and an 11-10 record overall. This is the third double-digit win season for Francour over his four seasons at Lawrence.
“It is a great honor for the entire men’s tennis team. It shows how hard everyone has worked to accomplish some high levels of play. The award is a testament to the entire program; the players, the support staff and the athletic department. Everyone has a part of our success,” Francour said of the award, which is voted on by his peers in the conference.
The Vikings also qualified for the conference tournament for the second straight year. This was no easy task given that the team lost four starters last year due to graduation. “We had to integrate five freshmen into our team. Our returning group of players helped the new players achieve success. The freshmen were talented, but needed to understand the level of work and commitment needed to excel at the college level. Everyone got on the same page and that led to our success. The team also had great contributions from everyone on the roster. [It] is a luxury to have a deep pool of talent to help achieve success,” Francour remarked about this year’s team and their season.
For Francour, coaching is a gift: “It is great to work with people who want to be good and put in the work to make that happen. If I can help those who want to succeed realize the level of work needed to make that happen and contribute to that, it is very satisfying as a coach. It is also great to get to know the members of the team on many different levels. After 27 years of coaching, it is an honor to be part of a college student’s life.”