Now in his eighth year at the helm of the University of Portland men’s tennis team, Head Coach Aaron Gross continues to build a solid program at The Bluff. He consistently fields a talented team filled with some of the best players the Northwest and the world has to offer.
Last season, Portland went 9-12 overall securing a fifth-place finish for its third-straight year at the WCC Championships. The team posted an 8-11 overall record in 2002-03. In 2001-02, the Pilots also finished fifth in the WCC, and ended the season with an 8-10 overall record. The team went 13-9 in 2000-01, its most wins since the 1996-97 season.
Gross guided the Pilots to a number of accomplishments in the 1999-2000 season after opening his career at The Bluff with an 8-12 record in his first season. He coached Portland to a 11-13 overall record and took the Pilots to a fourth place finish at the West Coast Conference Championships -- their best finish since 1984, when Portland finished in third place at the WCC Championships.
Throughout his tenure, Gross has coached one all-American (Travis Parrott, 2002); five all-West Coast Conference selections in singles (Jeff Nunnenkamp, 1999; Parrott, 2002; Malacek, 2002) and doubles (Joe and Nick Tostenrude, 1999) and has seen three of his players ranked in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association's Top 100 (Nunnenkamp, No. 68, 1999; Parrott, No. 26, 2002; Peter Malacek, No. 75, 2002).
Prior to his work with the Portland program, Gross established The Academy, the first junior tennis program of its kind in the state of Oregon. He has directed The Academy, based at Portland’s Eastmoreland Racquet Club, since its inception in 1994. The Academy consists of all regionally-and-nationally-ranked juniors. His students claimed eight consecutive (1994-2001) Oregon 4A High School Boys Championships and three others have gone on to claim three USTA national titles.
As a player, Gross was the Pacific Northwest’s top-ranked junior in 1986 and won two Oregon prep singles state championships, while competing for Lincoln High School in 1985 and 1987. He went on to play No. 4 singles at the University of Texas from 1987-89 and then transferred to the University of Washington where he played No. 1 singles for the Huskies from 1990-92. Gross also competed on the ATP satellite tour in Canada in 1991 and participated in the ATP Challenger qualifying tournaments from 1988-90. He was the Pacific Northwest’s No. 2-ranked men’s open player in 1989.
Gross is married to Portland’s women’s head tennis coach Susie Campbell-Gross. They have two daughters, Jasmine (six years old) and Mackenzie (two).