From individuals to organizations, weekend warriors to professional players, minute observations to big-picture ideas, tennis has been top of mind across the board over the past two years.

“I feel like this is the tennis boom part two,” says Trey Waltke, general manager of the Malibu Racquet Club in southern California. “Everyone is talking tennis. Everyone is playing. People are rediscovering how great tennis is.”

Tennis shouldn’t rest on its laurels; the first boom didn’t last forever. But this is as good of an opportunity to reflect on what the sport has gotten right, during a time when so much has gone wrong.

Over the next few weeks, we'll do just that, with a series of stories—30-Love—that highlights 30 things worth celebrating about the New American Tennis Boom. Look for past articles on the left side of each page.—Ed McGrogan


As a Bollettieri Academy standout, Jamea Jackson saw only one path in front of her when it came time to decide between college tennis and a professional career.

“I was part of that last generation where players were hitting it really big, really young,” she said in a 2020 interview. “Maria Sharapova is a year younger than me and won Wimbledon at 17. We were all coming just after Martina Hingis (who won her first Grand Slam title at 14) and Anna Kournikova and that generation of players.

“It was in my mind to turn pro very young. I really didn’t entertain college at that age the way I would if I was playing now.”

Now a National Coach at the USTA who specializes in transitioning juniors into the pros, the former world No. 45 sees an abundance of options for the young women she trains.

“I think that it should be absolutely obvious that a player should be on tour [before they turn pro], which means you’re getting into Grand Slams or Top 100,” she believes. “If you’re below the No. 200-300 range, why not go to school?

“You look at someone like Jennifer Brady, who went to school [at UCLA], had a great experience, and now she’s out and doing big things on tour. The good players who’ve gone to college, like Brady or Aliona Bolsova or Nicole Gibbs, they’re making dents on the pro tour.

Jackson lauds the likes of Jennifer Brady (pictured) with making the college route a viable option for players aiming to one day join the tour ranks.

Jackson lauds the likes of Jennifer Brady (pictured) with making the college route a viable option for players aiming to one day join the tour ranks.


“If you’re good, then you’re good, and the results are going to show it.”

Jackson retired from tennis after multiple hip surgeries and immediately moved into coaching, first for the Oklahoma State University women’s team. For the talented players she works with today, many are weighing whether to test themselves against the game’s best. That’s where Jackson comes in.

“I try to get players to maximize their number 7 of pro tournaments,” she says. “When women turn 14 and are age-eligible to play pro tournaments, they get eight. Very few players actually exhaust that list of tournaments, which is really a shame because that’s where you learn the most. If you want to be a pro and see where your game measures up against the pros, the best way to see it is to see it.”

Working with former prodigies like Coco Gauff and Amanda Anisimova, Jackson has seen “it” first hand, though admits identifying elite talent can be tricky for those still in their early teens.


Tennis Channel Live: Promising Young Americans

“If I could predict this, I’d be on the moon! Amanda had amazing eyes, and Coco had the mentality and maturity at such a young age,” she says. “They stand out to where you’re thinking, ‘They’ve got something.’ I haven’t seen anyone who is always right on determining these kinds of things; it can be hard to know exactly what’s inside a player when they’re so young.”

The first woman to challenge a call with electronic replay, Jackson has among the better eyes in American tennis, and couldn’t be more excited for this burgeoning next generation.

“The great thing about someone like Gauff is there’s so much she can add to her game,” the former U.S. Fed Cup player says. “She’s already doing what she’s doing and breaking through in such an amazing way, but she can still get better at so many things. What an amazing position to be in where the sky is the limit.

“I’m so incredibly proud of the girls coming up. I’m a fan of the way they carry themselves and their strength. They’re not afraid of the big stage or of any opponent across the net. They also have such poise: they work hard but there’s so much humility. All of those girls—Coco, Caty [McNally], Whitney [Osuigwe], Amanda—the future is very bright.”