The Texas Tennis Hall of Fame is proud to announce the Class of 2020, four individuals who have made an indelible mark on Texas tennis both on and off the court. The 2020 inductees include Paul Cass, Chuck Sanchelli, Kathy Vick and Carol Weyman. The induction will take place on Saturday, November 14. Details are pending due to concerns with the COVID-19 pandemic.
Class of 2020
Paul Cass of Corpus Christi, upon graduating from Texas A&M in 1970, immediately landed a job coaching high school tennis though he was a baseball player self taught to play tennis and had no previous coaching experience. However, his long career as the very successful tennis “Coach Cass” began there.
His rookie year produced a district-winning tennis team and a boy who won the 4A State Singles title. Moving on to Corpus Christi Richard King High School after that, he continued winning district titles at the 4A and 5A levels (highest at the time) for the next 21 consecutive years—an unprecedented accomplishment that has never been equaled.
In 1973 he developed and promoted the concept of the State Team Tournament. Before this, all high school play was based on individual results with the best team of the year declared by a coaches’ poll. Coach Cass thought the best team should be determined by a head-to-head competition of entire teams. Thus the fall team competition was born and continues today. The individual competitions remained in the spring season, and in 1986 Coach Cass had a girls singles, girls doubles and boys doubles all win State titles after winning regional and districts at the 5A level. This was another accomplishment that has never been repeated in Texas high school tennis.
Overall, Coach Cass won 19 Regional titles and 9 State titles. He coached 33 Regional Champions and 16 State Champions. His teams were 143-3 in District play, and all his teams were ranked in the top 10 in Texas, frequently top three. He coached over 100 All-District players, 22 All-State players and 14 All-Americans.
In the summers he traveled around the small towns of Texas to promote and teach tennis, giving free clinics in 2 or 3 towns a day. He also developed and ran Little League Tennis in Corpus, a program of free clinics and team competition for disadvantaged children.
Coach Cass also excelled as a player with a #1 ranking in Texas in singles, doubles and father/son and #3 ranking in husband-wife. Plus he won 12 gold balls nationally in Father/Daughter and 2 bronze in Father/Son. He has also represented the USA in international team competition, been inducted into the Texas Tennis Coaches Hall of Fame, and he and his family were named USTA Texas Family of the Year in 2016. Currently, he still competes, teaches, works with league teams and is an advisor for the Corpus Christi Tennis Association.
Charles “Chuck” Sanchelli
Chuck Sanchelli of Sugar Land was bitten by the tennis bug at age 13 and has devoted his life to sharing his love of the sport with others at many levels of service. Early on, while a collegiate player at Purdue University, he also formed and coached a boys’ team at the high school where he graduated. After college, he played on the USTA Satellite Pro Tour.
When he decided his true calling was teaching, sharing and serving, he moved to Texas in the mid-1970s as part of the first group of Tennis Pros at Newk’s Tennis Ranch, and he’s been at it for more than 45 years. He holds professional certifications from the USPTA and PTR for all age groups and has taught at resorts, clubs and academies. He got involved with the Houston Tennis Association and not only won their premier event, the Coca-Cola Open, he served as its tournament director for several years. In addition, he was HTA president for two terms and was co-founder of the Houston Professional Tennis Association.
When Chuck sees a need for sharing tennis with others, he goes into action. Among other programs, he founded the Southwest Houston Junior Team Tennis League, was the founding pro for the West Houston Ladies Tennis Association, which now has more than 4,000 players, and co-founded the Houston Parks & Rec Department’s National Junior Tennis League (NJTL), now serving over 6,000 children.
One of Chuck’s most valuable contributions to tennis has been as a volunteer. He has been the Chair and Member of numerous committees of the USTA National organization and USTA Texas, where he additionally served on their Management Committee as Treasurer and VP of Competitive Tennis. He’s been honored by all with various Community Service Awards, including the prestigious WT Caswell Award for contributing to the Growth and Development of Tennis in Texas. He’s also a USTA Official, Referee and Umpire.
Currently Chuck is Director of Tennis for Fort Bend Tennis Services, which he started with 24 adult and youth players and now has twelve tennis instructors providing programming to several suburban municipal parks and recreation departments involving more than 800 players year-round.
Kathy Kuhne Vick
Kathy Vick of Lubbock has been an accomplished tennis player and competitor at the top of rankings since her youth -- locally, Sectionally, Nationally and Internationally.
In high school she won the district 4A championship three years in a row and played with tennis scholarships at both Texas Tech and Trinity University. In 1981 Trinity was ranked #2 in the nation, and Vick was a finalist in the AIAW National Championships, defeated in the finals. Her individual record at Trinity was 21 wins out of the last 22 singles matches played.
She went on to a long and successful career as a teaching professional and coach at the club, high school and college levels. In addition, she traveled worldwide coaching various organized teams. Testing in as a Level Pro-1, Vick has been a member of USPTA for more than twenty years.
Most impressive, however, is that Kathy Vick has continued to play and compete. She has been a National Intersectional team player for USTA Texas every year since 1995 and its captain since 1998. She has often been one of four players selected to represent the USA in many team competitions internationally, traveling to Austria, Australia, South Africa, New Zealand and France.
In addition, she has consistently been ranked #1 in Texas in Singles and Doubles through all age groups, 40 through 60. Nationally she has been highly ranked by the USTA and the USPTA as well. Eleven times she has been named the USPTA Texas Player of the Year and ten times the USPTA National Player of the Year. From 1999 though 2017 she won 47 National balls representing National Championships – 14 gold, 21 silver and 12 bronze.
Along the way she has picked up many honors, including Sportsmanship awards, Senior Spirit of Texas Award, Top 200 Lubbock Athletes of the Century List, highlighted in book of Lubbock Sports Heroes, and inducted into the Lubbock ISD Hall of Honor.
Carol Weyman, a Shreveport, Louisiana native, moved to Dallas in 1979 to begin a career in tennis, a sport she had played and loved since childhood. As a junior competitor, she won the Louisiana State High School Mixed Doubles Championship three years in a row (’72, ’73 and ’74), a record that still holds to this day. In 2009, she was inducted into the C.E. Byrd High Athletic Hall of Fame for her junior tennis achievement. She continued to enjoy playing tennis while at LSU and was head of the Tennis Department at Camp Waldemar in Hunt, Texas for four years.
Upon arriving in Dallas, Carol’s tennis career began as a Sales Representative for Strokemaster/John Verde Tennis Company selling tennis equipment nationwide. She received her USPTA certification in 1980 and taught clinics and private lessons at the Village Tennis Center. In 1981, Carol began working for World Championship Tennis (WCT) managing the operations of 22 men’s professional tournaments worldwide, selling sponsorships and marketing the WCT Finals. In 1989, she was recruited by the Maureen Connolly Brinker Tennis Foundation (MCB) to be Tournament Director of its women’s professional tennis event, the Virginia Slims of Dallas. The following year, she was named MCB’s Executive Director. Carol currently serves as MCB’s Executive Vice President and oversees the management of the foundation’s numerous programs and operations. She recently celebrated her 30th anniversary with MCB.
Carol’s vision, creativity and innovations have had a major impact on the junior tennis world of 8 to 12 year-olds. In 1998, she founded MCB’s signature event, the “Road to the Little Mo Nationals” - a yearlong circuit of sectional, regional and national tournaments for U.S. players. The series begins in the spring with a Sectional tournament held in 20 cities across the U.S with the top players from each age division advancing to one of the four Regionals held in the summer. The top 16 players from each Regional advance to the prestigious “Little Mo” Nationals in the fall. The players who reach the “Little Mo” Nationals are the brightest future stars in American tennis.
In 2006, Carol created the “Little Mo” Internationals as well as the “Little Mo” Slam in 2013 for players worldwide. There are now three international tournaments (California, New York and Florida) for ages 8-12 in addition to the “Big Mo” for ages 13-16. The most recent “Little Mo” Internationals had a record number of players - over 500 competitors from 60 countries. If a player wins all three Internationals in one year, they win the “Little Mo” Slam and receive the tallest trophy in junior tennis - 6 feet! Carol envisioned and implemented many unique aspects of the “Little Mo” tournaments which are enjoyed by the players such as opening ceremonies, player parties, player gift exchange, and “Mo” coins awarded for sportsmanship which are traded in for prizes at the “Little Mo” booth. Another trademark of the “Little Mo” events is that players play others who are their same age which provides an opportunity to be seeded, have competitive matches and possibly win a trophy. All “Little Mo” tournaments emphasize good sportsmanship, fair play, friendship, kindness, gratitude and most of all, fun. Thousands of players have come through the popular “Little Mo” tournaments over the last 23 years.
MCB is one of the largest private junior tennis foundations of its kind in the world. Under Carol’s leadership, the foundation has become one of the most respected for its ability in keeping players interested in tennis, in encouraging players to give back to the sport and in becoming role models as they progress into adulthood. She has touched the lives of many tennis players who have gone on to future success in the junior, college and professional ranks. As she instills in the players the importance of being a champion on and off the court, she has earned the respect of parents, coaches and tennis officials alike.
While continuing to work with the foundation, Carol has also served on the board of the Dallas Tennis Association and on various committees of USTA Texas, all of whom appreciate her dedication and tireless efforts to promote and improve the sport of tennis.
As Carol’s slogan says: Play “Mo” Tennis!