TEMPE, Az. – The Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) has announced today a format change coming to the Division I Men’s and Women’s National Team Indoor Championships for the 2025 and 2026 seasons.

As two of the most prestigious championships on the college tennis calendar, the new regional hosting format will see play split between two host schools within 200 miles of each other with the aim of enhancing the in-person viewing experience, the student-athlete experience, as well as the broadcast production throughout the entire event.

“As the ITA’s marquee event and one of the premier events of each college tennis season, the ITA is always looking for ways to improve upon the current version of the Indoor Championships while simultaneously addressing any challenges associated with the event,” said Cory Brooks, ITA Managing Director. “During the last several bid cycles, we have seen a reduction in the number of bids due, in part, to the significant cost of hosting and the requirement of 12 indoor match courts.” 

Over much of the last year, the ITA staff, in consultation with the ITA Division I Operating Committee and ITA-member Division I coaches, has reviewed several options aimed at upgrading the Indoor Championships while simultaneously addressing the current challenges. Reducing hosting costs, utilizing facilities that enhance the in-person experience for student-athletes and spectators, and showcasing the national semifinals and finals as stand-alone, prime-time events were the primary focus of that review. 

“We are very excited about the opportunities that this new format provides,” said Brooks. “Specifically, the ability to play the entire event on two campuses with access to two fan bases and two world-class facilities built specifically for the college tennis dual match experience.”  

Below, more specifics on the new regional hosting format can be found:

Why the Change from the Traditional Single Host Format?

  • A decreasing number of host site bids throughout the last several cycles caused, in part, by the expense of hosting, the need for 12 indoor match courts, and the lack of institutional and financial resources necessary to administer a 16-team event, often held at two separate facilities.
  • The current utilization of off-campus, public and/or private facilities not made for the college tennis dual match experience. These facilities often lack the infrastructure necessary to administer high-level events (scoreboards, support staff, no streaming or low-quality streaming) and often offer limited in-person viewing opportunities.

How Will the Regional Hosting Format Work?

  • Eight (8) teams will begin at each partner institution (two schools within 200 miles of each other that will serve as co-hosts)
  • Each site will host the opening two rounds of play on their campuses
  • After the second round, the two (2) semifinalists from the secondary site will travel to the primary site, while all four (4) semifinalists will be given this day off for travel, rest and practice
  • For those teams in the back draw, they will remain at the site in which they began and will play their third and final matches during this off day for the semifinalists
  • Both co-hosts will receive wild cards into the event and ITA Kickoff Weekend will be reduced from 15 sites (60 teams) to 14 sites (56 teams).  The ITA notes that, with declines and passes, the last team accepted into the Kickoff Weekend Draft typically falls between #62-80 in the final rankings leaving a high probability of the final top 60 gaining entry despite this change.

What Are The Advantages Of This Regional Hosting Format?

  • Each site will be held on a college campus where the world-class facilities and atmosphere will be on full display for all competing teams
  • Better infrastructure will be in place lending to a better fan experience, player experience, and technological experience
  • Semifinalists now have a day off to reduce the burden of playing four consecutive days of Top-20 matches during the event
  • Semifinal and Final match times are more flexible resulting in more options when it comes to televising matches and promoting in-person attendance
  • Reduction in the cost of hosting and the number of courts required to host open create a much larger pool of prospective hosts and outstanding facilities 

How Will Each Day Look?

  • Day One
    • Four matches will be played at each site
  • Day Two
    • Four matches will be played at each site
  • Day Three
    • Three back draw matches will be played at each site
    • Semifinalists will all be given the day off for travel, rest, and practice
  • Day Four
    • The Semifinal matches will be played in prime time at the primary site
  • Day Five
    • The Finals will be played in prime time at the primary site

Where Will the 2025 & 2026 Championships Be Hosted?

Check back tomorrow to the ITA website, WeAreCollegeTennis.com, as well as the ITA on social media, @ITA_Tennis, as we announce the host sites of 2025 and 2026 ITA Division I Men’s and Women’s National Team Indoor Championships.

About The ITA: The Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) is the governing body of college tennis and a coaches association, both an advocate and an authority for the sport and its members. The ITA is committed to serving college tennis and returning the leaders of tomorrow while promoting both the athletic and academic achievements of the collegiate tennis community. The ITA, founded in 1956, is comprised of more than 2,000 men’s and women’s varsity tennis teams representing more than 1,250 institutions, while administering numerous regional and national championships, and the ITA/Tennis Point College Tennis Rankings for 20,000 college varsity student-athletes across five levels of play. The ITA also bolsters an industry-leading awards program for players and coaches to honor excellence in academics, leadership, and sportsmanship. Keep up with all of the excitement around college tennis by visiting WeAreCollegeTennis.com and following the ITA on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, and LinkedIn.

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