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Julia and Mike Sell to Leave LSU Women's Tennis

Julia and Mike Sell to Leave LSU Women's Tennis

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.

“Thank you to everyone who has supported us during our time in Baton Rouge. We appreciate all those who have contributed to the program’s unprecedented success.  We will cherish the incredible memories we are taking with us and will always be unwavering supporters of the LSU Women’s Tennis program. Tigers for Life!”

“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,” said Director of Athletics Scott Woodward. “While we are disappointed to see them go, we understand their decision, and we wish them all the best in their future endeavors.”

During their historic run, 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 Women’s Tennis 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. That season, Joana Valle Costa and Jessica Golovin qualified for NCAA Singles Championships to become the first pair of teammates to reach the postseason event in the same season. 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.