reason I’ll always play tennis is because tennis has
really been an instrumental part of making me who I am. And this is where Princeton
has been really special for me, just the number of people that
I’ve gotten to do and share this journey with –
my coaches, my teammates, and also just the huge athletic
sort of body and tennis has been that for me. It’s totally shaped my
person, in a way which I’m at least really thankful for. Being an athlete,
in general, has been absolutely central
to my time at Princeton. And I think it’s extended my
academic environment, as well, because you get all this
extra time in a really sort of intimate environment
with other student-athletes who are also really
smart people, and who also care about their studies. And so it’s actually
complemented my academic life in a really
cool way, not to mention the sort of just sort of
communal element of what it means to be a
Princeton athlete. There’s a really good sort of
society and community, I think, that we all have
because we’re going through the same sort of stuff. BILLY PATE: Luke has probably
grown as much as anybody here, and I think he’s really
benefited from the Princeton experience. He is a very, very
articulate guy. He’s a voracious reader. He came here with
the idea he was going to do English, and read a lot. I remember, his
recruiting visit, he was worried he wouldn’t
be able to read the things he wanted to read on the outside,
because the professors would have him reading so much. But I think he’s really done a
good job of utilizing Princeton and getting all the resources
out of Princeton for him and using it for,
you know, gain later, so it’s improving his
life, and of course, improving it on the team as well. LUKE GAMBLE: One of
our favorite things to do as a team is
on Friday mornings, it’s called Reading
with the Tigers. And we partner with
a local school, and it’s organized by the
Student Athlete Service Council. And we go and we read with
young kids, elementary students, and it’s a great way for
us to sort of bond together outside the regular academic
or athletic environment but still do something
that we think is worthwhile with the community. BILLY PATE: I would say
each head coach here treats their players like a family. So you want to see
them excel, and you want to see them come back
for reunions, for alumni gatherings you have,
to come to matches or where they’re on the road. They’ll be all scattered,
probably, across the country, and they’ll come out
to there to see us. And hopefully, they’ll take
some life lessons here, whether it’s from the
University or from our program or just learning
from each other, because there’s a lot to learn
from each guy on the team.

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Dennis Veasley

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