David Schumacher is quickly making his mark as one of the top coaches in women's college tennis. Since becoming head coach of the Tulane women's tennis program, Schumacher has helped the Green Wave become perhaps the fastest growing tennis program in the nation, and leading them to a No. 11 final ranking in 2004.
Schumacher is no stranger to the success of Tulane tennis. Prior to becoming head coach in 2000, he spent three seasons as an assistant coach under former Wave mentor Jennifer Melius, taking a team that had never been ranked to the Top 25. During his time in New Orleans, he has helped guide the Wave to five NCAA Tournament appearances, including a Round of 16 showing in 2004, three Conference USA titles and seven top five league finishes. For his efforts, he has been selected as the Conference USA Coach of the Year in 2001, 2003 and 2004 as well as Louisiana Coach of the Year in four successive seasons (2001, `02, `03 and `04).
Schumacher took over the reins of the Tulane women's tennis program in 2000 and wasted little time in pushing the Green Wave toward national prominence, as the squad finished with a 14-9 record and a third-place showing at the Conference USA Tournament. It was 2001, however, that saw Tulane win its first-ever Conference USA championship and advance to the NCAA Tournament where the Wave upset No. 16 Texas A&M in the first round, while Anna Monhartova became the first Tulane player to earn a berth in the singles draw of the NCAA Championships.
In 2002, Schumacher coached Maria Ivanov to Conference USA Freshman of the Year honors as the Wave cruised to another top three finish at the league tournament. A year ago, the program turned another corner. Schumacher led the Wave to an impressive 20-5 record during the season and the squad's second Conference USA championship. The team upset No. 10 Texas in the NCAA Tournament and claimed the doubles point from eventual national champion Florida in the second round. Then-freshmen Jenny Kuhn and Julie Smekodub earned a spot in the NCAA singles and doubles draws and would become the first All- Americans in school history. The duo also won the ITA National Indoor doubles title in the Fall of 2002, giving Tulane its first individual national title since 1955. Kuhn was named C-USA Player and Freshman of the Year, and was one of five Wave players to earn all-conference honors.
As great as 2003 was, it almost paled in comparison to 2004. The Wave reached the Round of 16 at the NCAA Tournament and finished the year ranked 11th thanks to a gaudy 27-2 record. Kuhn repeated as Conference USA Player of the Year and was one of six Wave players named to the all-conference teams. Tulane won its second straight Conference USA championship, and third in four seasons.
Schumacher's players have also fared well in the classroom. Several team members have earned National Scholar-Athlete recognition from the ITA. The team as a whole has also been recognized for its academic accomplishments by the ITA.
Schumacher played for the Green Wave under the legendary Emmet Pare from 1971-73, before transferring to American University following the Frenchman's death. After his collegiate playing days, Schumacher continued to remain active in the competitive tennis circuit. He competed in more than 50 satellite professional tournaments in Europe and the United States from 1976-1993. Most recently, he was ranked No. 3 nationally in the U.S. Men's 40's singles.
He graduated magna cum laude from American University in 1976, earning departmental honors in history and literature, before graduating in the top third of his class and earning his Juris Doctorate from LSU in 1979.
While practicing general civil litgation and appellate law for the next 18 years, Schumacher coached many of the top juniors in the New Orleans area.
Schumacher and his wife, Ann, have two children, Katie and William. Schumacher's maternal grandfather is a legendary figure in Tulane athletics. Charles "Peggy" Flournoy was Tulane's first All-American in football, earning the honor in 1926. Flournoy was also named the Most Valuable Player in America, winning the award that is now recognized as the Heisman Trophy.