Michael Starke 1987-06
Induction Class of 2012
A lifelong Binghamton native, Michael Starke served as the men's tennis coach at Binghamton from 1987-2006, steering the program to unprecedented regional and national success.
During his 20-year coaching tenure at the University, Starke produced 10 All-Americans, 14 Academic All-Americans and 26 NCAA qualifiers. His teams claimed five conference titles, advanced to the NCAAs seven times and won at a 67 percent clip. Starke, who won 246 matches, held the niche of being a conference Coach of the Year at all three NCAA levels.
Early in his tenure, Starke guided his then-Division III Colonials to 11 consecutive national Top-25 rankings from 1988-98. He was named SUNYAC Coach of the Year in 1990, ITA Regional Coach of the Year in 1992 and coached nationally-ranked players all 11 years at Division III.
In 1995, Starke assembled one of the finest teams in school history. The Colonials went 17-4, advanced to the program's first-ever NCAA Championship, crowned its first four All-Americans and finished ranked 10th in the entire nation. He repeated as ITA Regional Coach of the Year.
That began a run of three straight NCAA appearances and three straight top-12 national finishes between 1995-97.
In 1996, the Colonials hosted the NCAA East Regional and stunned undefeated and fifth-ranked Williams to advance to the NCAA Finals as one of the top 8 teams in the country.
Starke's program handled the department's NCAA divisional transition seamlessly and his 1999 Division II team was ranked 30th in the nation and again advanced to the NCAAs.
Now a Division I program in the America East Conference in 2003, Starke's Bearcats began another memorable three-year run that featured three consecutive conference titles and NCAA berths, the program's first-ever nationally-ranked Division I player and its first Division I regional team ranking (12th).
He was voted America East Coach of the Year three straight years, produced the conference Player of the Year four straight years and also mentored countless scholar-athletes.
With prominent recruits from countries such as Israel, India and Brazil, Starke expanded Binghamton recruiting worldwide, paving the way for future success.
Away from the University, Starke owns and operates the Binghamton Tennis Center and was instrumental in bringing the successful USTA professional tournament to the area.
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