Joerg Barthel (pronounced YURG BARR-thul), enters his second year at the helm of the Georgia State men's tennis team after a fantastic first year. He was formerly the associate head coach at the University of Nebraska, was named the head coach of the Georgia State University men's tennis program on July 19, 2012.
In his first year leading the Panthers, the No. 61-ranked team captured a Sun Belt championship and Barthel was named Sun Belt Coach of the Year. The team then competed in the first round of the NCAA Team Championship. Barthel had two players advance to the NCAA Doubles Championship. Lucas Santa Ana and Victor Valente teamed together to earn Georgia State’s first win of any kind in an NCAA championship setting against the No.-9 ranked doubles team from Kentucky. Valente also advanced to the first round of the NCAA Singles Championship.
Under Barthel's leadership in the first year, the beat four nationally-ranked opponents, including an upset of No. 49-ranked Middle Tennessee State in the Sun Belt Championship finals. The team came back from a 3-0 deficit to win the match, and the title, 4-3. Robert Schulze earned the Sun Belt Conference Championship Most Outstanding Player award for his efforts. Santa Ana and Valente were both named to the Sun Belt Championship All-Tournament team. Those three also earned All-Sun Belt honors prior to the matches, with Valente taking home First Team Singles and Doubles laurels, Santa Ana earning First Team Doubles and Schulze taking home Second Team Singles.
Barthel helped build Nebraska into a nationally-ranked program over his last three seasons. He served as the Cornhuskers' recruiting coordinator and was involved in all day-to-day operations within the program, including coaching, facilitating practices, scheduling, planning travel arrangements and managing the team's budget.
Under Barthel and head coach Kerry McDermott, Nebraska earned the first two NCAA berths in school history in 2010 and 2011 and then made its first appearances in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association National Men's Team Indoor Championship in 2011 and 2012. The 2010 team attained the highest national ranking in program history at No. 25 in the ITA poll.
"Joerg is a charismatic young coach with an outstanding ability to recruit," said GSU Director of Athletics Cheryl L. Levick upon hiring Barthel. "He is well-connected and highly-respected in the tennis community, both in the U.S. and abroad. He will build upon the strong tennis foundation we have at Georgia State and develop a championship-caliber program."
Barthel recruited seven nationally-ranked players who helped form the backbone of the Nebraska roster the last three years of his tenure, including the doubles team of Christopher Aumueller and Benedikt Lindheim, who were ranked as high as No. 5 in the nation in doubles and earned a berth in the NCAA Doubles Championship.
A four-year letterwinner at Nebraska (2002-06), Barthel led the team in singles and doubles victories as a sophomore before battling injuries his junior and senior seasons.
He received his undergraduate degree in international studies from Nebraska in 2006 and was named graduate assistant coach following his graduation.
A native of Friedrichsdorf, Germany, Barthel attended high school at Phillip-Reis-Schule and earned a German national ranking as high as No. 239.