2018 ITA Kickoff Weekend Draws | Final 2017 ITA Men's Division I rankings
DAVIS, Calif. -- For the second time in three seasons, the UC Davis men's tennis team will kick-off its spring schedule against some of the nation's top teams as one of 60 schools selected to compete during the 2018 ITA Kickoff Weekend.
The Aggies are the No. 4 seed in Los Angeles as they will take on perennial power UCLA -- ranked No. 5 in the nation at the end of the 2017 season -- in the opener on Jan. 27 at the Los Angeles Tennis Center. No. 33 UCF and No. 45 Utah State are the No. 2 and No. 3 seeds, respectively.
Two matches are guaranteed during the weekend with the 15 schools that win both of their matches advancing to the 2018 ITA National Team Indoor Championships hosted by Washington on Feb. 16-19 in Seattle. UC Davis is one of three schools from the Big West Conference selected to participate, as the Aggies join UC Santa Barbara (No. 2 seed at USC) and Cal Poly (No. 3 seed at Texas A&M).
It will be a familiar destination for UC Davis, which made its first trip to the event 12 miles to the east to start the 2016 campaign, falling to host and top-seeded USC, 7-0, in Los Angeles before bouncing back to upset nationally ranked Pepperdine, 4-3, on day two. The Aggies finished that season 17-7 overall -- including a run of 12 consecutive victories.
The Bruins, meanwhile, wrapped up a 2016-17 campaign that saw them finish 22-6 overall during the spring -- including a perfect 6-0 mark in Pac-12 Conference play -- and gained the quarterfinals of the NCAA Tournament before falling to Georgia.
The Golden Knights finished the season 16-7 overall in the spring, reaching the finals of the American Athletic Conference tournament and gaining a spot in the NCAA Tournament before falling to Louisville, 4-3, in the opening round.
The Aggies of Utah State will be making their fourth consecutive appearance at the ITA Kickoff Weekend event, finishing the season with a 23-9 overall record. Utah State won both the Mountain West regular season and tournament titles before falling to No. 21 Northwestern in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament.
Sporting one of the top mid-major recruiting classes in the nation for next season, UC Davis finished the 2017 campaign with a 14-8 overall record and a second-place finish in the Big West, ending the year ranked No. 65 in the nation and a Division I era-best No. 64 ranking in the final RPI.
According to the final ITA regional rankings, the Aggies ended the year ranked No. 7 in the northwest region, while senior James Wade ranked No. 16 in singles and the duo of Tommy Lam and Big West Freshman of the Year David Goulak finished ranked No. 8 in the region in doubles.