POSTED: Aug. 30, 2012 - Former West Liberty University tennis standout Tyler McCullough ’12 was honored as one of the Intercollegiate Tennis Association’s major national award winners during the annual ITA Awards Luncheon, hosted by the United States Tennis Association (USTA) in conjunction with the U.S. Open.
The presentations took place in the President’s Suite Dining Room as part of Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day activities at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Jon Vegosen, chairman of the board and president of the USTA, David Benjamin, ITA executive director, and David Dinkins, former Mayor of New York City and a member of the USTA Board of Directors, were on hand to present the awards.
McCullough was recognized as the 2012 NCAA Division II winner of the Arthur Ashe Jr. National Leadership and Sportsmanship Award, which takes into account a player’s tennis accomplishments, scholastic achievements and extracurricular endeavors. Just as Arthur Ashe was a great player and humanitarian, this award (which dates to 1984) recognizes players who excelled on and off the court during their college careers. Sportsmanship, leadership and character are also important criteria.
A two-time regional Ashe Award winner, McCullough led West Liberty to its third NCAA Division III Atlantic Regional Tournament berth in 2012. He worked alongside other WLU student-athletes to organize games and activities for local children and found time during weekends to provide tennis lessons to local children. Despite battling injuries,
McCullough became the first student-athlete from the West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference to win a major ITA award. A Wheeling native and son of West Liberty tennis coach Sam McCullough ’68, Tyler was a member of two honor societies at the university and graduated in the spring with a 3.5 GPA in accounting.
Mayor Dinkins presented Tyler with a commemorative plaque at the Awards Luncheon.
As the governing body of collegiate tennis, the ITA promotes both the athletic and academic achievements of the collegiate tennis community. Comprised of nearly 1,700 men’s and women’s varsity coaches representing over 1,200 institutions, the ITA administers numerous regional and national championships and the Campbell/ITA College Tennis Rankings for more than 20,000 college varsity student-athletes at the NCAA Divisions I, II and III, NAIA and Junior College levels.