Former United States Tennis Association player development national coach Mat Cloer is headed to Gainesville after being named the Florida Gators men’s tennis associate head coach Sunday.
Cloer's return to collegiate tennis comes after joining the USTA in 2017, where he worked with talented players such as former UCLA Bruins standout Mackenzie McDonald and former Gator great Sekou Bangoura.
"We are really pleased to have Mat and Lauren Cloer and their family join our Gators program," head coach Bryan Shelton said. "Mat is one of the most well-respected coaches in the tennis industry and this hire is another major win for the Gators.”
This vote of confidence from Shelton came with good reason; Cloer’s collegiate resume is almost as extensive as his work with USTA.
Florida’s new associate head coach was an assistant head coach for the North Carolina State Wolfpack, helping lead his team to three NCAA Tournament appearances during his tenure. Cloer was also a volunteer assistant coach for Florida State from 2006-08 before taking over an official assistant coach role in 2008.
During his time at Florida State, he saw the Seminoles make deep runs in the NCAA Tournament, including two round of 16 appearances in back-to-back years. Cloer has an eye for talent on the tennis court, putting together two top-10 recruiting classes and was named the South Region Assistant Coach of the Year in 2010 with the Seminoles.
Cloer has big shoes to fill as he takes over for former Florida associate head coach Tanner Stump, who stepped down to spend more time with family after joining the orange and blue in 2016.
UF captured the national championship in 2021 and made it to the Elite Eight this season, before falling to the Virginia Cavaliers 4-1.
Sophomore Ben Shelton captured the NCAA Singles Championship on May 28 and joined teammate and doubles partner senior Sam Riffice as the second Gator to bring home this coveted award in the last two years.
Brenda Bogle is a UF journalism senior with a specialization in sports and media. She joined The Alligator in the Fall of 2021.