FRANKE TO STEP DOWN AS W&L'S MEN'S TENNIS COACH
LEXINGTON, Va. -- Washington and Lee Athletic Director Mike Walsh has announced that head wrestling and men's tennis coach Gary Franke will relinquish his duties as tennis coach. He will remain as the University's head coach of wrestling and assume additional responsibilities in teaching physical education courses and in game management.
David Detwiler, who serves as the director of W&L's Duchossois Tennis Center and has assisted both the men's and women's tennis programs, will replace Franke as head coach.
"I'm proud to have led the men's tennis program at W&L for so long," said Franke. "I will always cherish the memories, but it's time to move on. I feel very good about leaving the program in David's hands and believe that he will continue to move the program forward."
Franke steps down after coaching the men's tennis program for 22 seasons, posting a school-record 213 career wins. He led the Generals to 18 Old Dominion Athletic Conference Championships, including 10 straight from 1985-94, and earned ODAC Coach of the Year honors nine times.
Franke's teams were also highly successful on the national level, finishing in the Top 10 on nine occasions, culminating in the 1988 Division III National Championship. He was named the ITA Division III Coach of the Year in 1987 after leading the Generals to their second-straight National Runner-up finish. All told, Franke coached 13 singles and 23 doubles players to All-American status.
Franke was also an instrumental member in the development of the Duchossois Tennis Center, W&L's four-court indoor tennis center.
"I'd like to thank Coach Franke for his efforts in establishing Washington and Lee men's tennis as a regional and national program," said Walsh. "He has set high standards for our players and has brought much acclaim to the University."
Detwiler, a 1988 graduate of Furman University, is finishing his third full year with the University. During that time he was responsible for overseeing the tennis center and has assisted both the men's and women's tennis programs.
Prior to arriving at W&L, Detwiler spent the previous eight years as the tennis director at Shadow Oaks Racquet Club in Greenville, S.C.
At Furman, Detwiler was a two-time Southern Conference champion in singles and a three-time SoCon champion in doubles. He served as team captain and was named Team MVP his senior season.
"David has made an outstanding contribution to the University and local tennis community during his three years," Walsh commented. "We are pleased to be able to offer him this opportunity to direct the men's tennis program and maintain the level of success the program has acheived."
Detwiler will assume his duties as head coach effective July 1.