Husband-wife duo, Mike and Julia Sell, leaving LSU women’s tennis program

PHOTO BY: LSU athletics.

Julia and Mike Sell, who led LSU Women’s Tennis to unprecedented success and national prominence over the past decade, are leaving the program to pursue other opportunities.

Julia Sell has served as head coach of LSU Women’s Tennis since 2012, while Michael Sell was named co-head coach in 2015 after three seasons as a volunteer assistant. 

“It has been an honor to serve as the LSU Women’s Tennis co-head coaches and to have had the rare opportunity to grow this program together as husband and wife,” the Sells said. “So today, it is bittersweet to share that we have accepted a new opportunity that is best for our family. This was a difficult decision, but we are excited to pursue this next step in our careers.”

LSU athletic director Scott Woodward thanked the Sells for their contributions to the improvement of LSU women’s tennis.

“I want to thank Julia and Michael for their tremendous service and dedication to LSU Athletics and for their work to elevate our women’s tennis program to new heights,” Woodward said. “While we are disappointed to see them go, we understand their decision, and we wish them all the best in their future endeavors.”

Julia and Mike earned three top-five nationally ranked recruiting classes, including the nation’s No. 1 recruiting class in 2016. Two years later, Eden Richardson and Jessica Golovin achieved the program’s first National Championship, winning the NCAA Doubles title in 2018.

Under the Sells, LSU achieved seven straight NCAA Tournament appearances from 2014 to 2021. That run culminated in the program’s highest-ever conference finish in 2021, when the Tigers hosted NCAA Regionals for the first time. LSU would finish No. 17 in the final ITA rankings, the highest end-of-season national ranking in program history, ending the campaign with a school-record nine SEC victories. 

Since Julia Sell’s arrival in 2012, six different Tigers have earned All-American honors, the most in any coaching tenure in school history, and during the 2019 season, Julia became the quickest LSU Women’s Tennis coach to reach the 100th win milestone.

In Michael Sell’s first season as co-head coach, LSU broke the record for the highest team ranking in school history, reaching the Top 10 for the first time ever at No. 9. The Tigers would break the record for the highest ranking in school history on three separate occasions during the 2016 season, qualifying for the ITA National Team Indoors for the first time in program history. 

Together, the Sells won 99 matches at LSU as co-head coaches. 

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Tiger Rag News Services

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