Lee Veteran Tennis Coach Resigns

Wednesday, April 30, 2014
Veteran Lee University men and women's tennis coach Tony Cavett has resigned both his positions with the university, effective immediately.

While continuing to serve as a teaching professional at the Cleveland County Club, Cavett directed the Lee men's tennis program for the past 17 seasons and the women for 16 campaigns.

"I plan to continue teaching tennis and I want to join a group in the East Tennessee area that is interested in promoting and developing the growth of the sport I have loved for so many years," said Cavett.

Cavett also stressed his appreciation for the many student athletes he has worked with and the success and friendship they have enjoyed over the years. He also thanked the administration for its support.

"Coach Cavett has been a mainstay of our tennis programs for the last 17 years," commented Lee Athletic Director Larry Carpenter. "His teams were known for achieving a high level of academic success while being competitive on the courts. He has been an integral part of our athletic department and we wish him the best. "

Lee president Paul Conn expressed his appreciation for Cavett's long-term commitment to tennis at Lee. "Tony has been a wonderful colleague, and led our tennis program through a period of outstanding success," Conn said. "He will always be a big part of the Lee University athletic tradition, and as he leaves, we are saying goodbye to a wonderful friend who cares deeply about student and the sport of tennis."

During his 17 seasons at Lee, his clubs posted a combined record of 300-252 (146-137 men, 154-116 women). Both teams had winning records for six consecutive years (2002-2007). Cavett embraced coaching students who were standouts in classroom. He helped mentor 42 NAIA Scholar Athletes and produced one NAIA First Team All-American.

His most success came when the Flames and Lady Flames were members of the TranSouth Conference. His 2002 TranSouth Conference women's team won the regular season and tournament championships. He was later voted the 2002 TranSouth Women's Coach of the Year. In 2013 both men and women's teams finished seventh in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association's Top 10 All-Academic Team Awards.

Cavett, who played tennis and coached at Cleveland State Community College, was recently voted into the Cleveland State Athletic Hall of Fame.

"We will begin accepting applications for the tennis positions immediately," noted Carpenter.

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