June 14, 2024

No. 1 Freshman in the Nation, Cooper Williams, Joins Duke Tennis

DURHAM – On Thursday, Duke men’s tennis head coach Ramsey Smith officially welcomed ITA All-American Cooper Williams to the Blue Devils’ 2024-25 recruiting class.

Williams, originally from New York, N.Y., is transferring to Duke after a standout freshman season (2023-24) at Harvard University. There, he earned All-America honors, finishing the year ranked No. 14 in singles and No. 21 in doubles. Remarkably, Williams was the only freshman in the top-15 final rankings and one of just two freshmen nationally to be named an All-American.

“I am thrilled that Cooper has chosen to continue his collegiate career at Duke,” Smith said. “His competitiveness and pursuit of excellence as a student-athlete is a perfect fit for Duke, and I believe he will feel right at home within our tennis program and campus. Cooper arrives at Duke already an accomplished student-athlete, and my coaching staff and I are really looking forward to spearheading his ongoing development and progress throughout the next three years. We are excited about Cooper’s tennis, as he ranks as one of the most accomplished players to ever join the program. Additionally, we are equally excited about his character and the leadership he will bring to Duke University on and off the tennis court. I’m grateful to Cooper and his parents for their trust in our program and the momentum we are building within Duke Tennis.”

New York's Cooper Williams enters Jr. US Open as top-ranked American – NBC  New York

In his first collegiate year, Williams led Harvard to its highest-ever ranking of No. 6 and helped the team finish the year at No. 12 nationally. Harvard also made its debut appearance at the ITA National Indoor Championships and its second consecutive showing in the NCAA Super Regional round.

As a freshman, Williams compiled a 17-10 singles record, playing on Harvard’s top court with an 8-6 dual match record and securing 10 wins against nationally-ranked opponents. In doubles, he achieved a 25-13 record, including three wins over ranked pairs. He reached a career-high ranking of No. 9 in singles and No. 4 in doubles with partner Daniel Milavsky after the fall season. Williams was unanimously selected for the First Team All-Ivy League in both singles and doubles.

Williams earned spots in both the singles and doubles 2024 NCAA Individual Championship, becoming Harvard’s first freshman All-American since James Blake in 1998. He advanced to the NCAA singles quarterfinals, the first Crimson player to do so since 2014. For his postseason performance, Williams earned a place in the ATP accelerator program, which provides ATP Challenger Tour opportunities to top-ranked ITA college players.

Before Harvard, Williams reached a career-high ITF ranking of No. 3 in August 2023 and held ATP rankings of 986 in singles and 524 in doubles. In 2023, he won the Australian Open Junior Doubles title with Learner Tien and was a semifinalist in singles and a quarterfinalist in doubles at Wimbledon Juniors. He also reached the quarterfinals in singles and doubles at both Roland Garros Juniors and the US Open Junior Championships. Williams won the 2019 Les Petit As Doubles Crown and the 2019 USTA Boys Hardcourt Singles title, accumulating 10 USTA Gold, Silver, and Bronze balls at super nationals throughout his junior career.

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