By Mike Myers
Paul Monson, an enthusiastic co-captain for the Southern Virginia University men’s tennis team, is the Knight of the Week. While only a freshman, he is leading the Knights’ undefeated season as the team’s number one single’s player. Monson has charged his way to an impressive 5-1 individual record this fall season.
“Paul’s addition to the team has been a huge factor in our success,” head coach Thomas Snelson remarked. “He helps with his leadership and his passion for winning. His passion for winning may even be slightly behind his dislike for losing; I'm not sure which is stronger. He will have much success here and is right up there in the CAC as one of the top players.”
How long have you been playing tennis?
I’ve been playing tennis competitively since I was 9 years old.
What made you decide to attend Southern Virginia University?
My decision to attend SVU was really random. I emailed the tennis coach and he immediately emailed me back and scheduled a trip for me to visit. I thought the campus was really cool and thought I’d give it a try.
Which professional tennis player would you say your style most emulates & who's your favorite player?
My style most emulates David Ferrer. I don’t hit the ball super hard but I’m really quick and I hardly ever miss. My favorite player however is Roger Federer. He’s just so cool and classy, and hard not to like.
What are your goals personally for the season, and for the team?
For this year, my goal is to be the CAC Freshman of the year. I feel that if I work really hard and play the best that I can, I could even be the CAC player of the year. If our team plays the absolute best that we can, we could potentially win the CAC and make it to the NCAA tournament. Our team is setting the bar high!
Where is your favorite spot on campus?
My favorite spots on campus are my bed, because I’m always exhausted from school and tennis, and the tennis courts because I love to play.
Who has been the most influential person in your life and why?
The most influential person in my life other than a family member would have to be the person I was named after, Dr. Paul Cox. He’s someone that has always been there for me and a person I know I can always count on.
What is your favorite thing to eat?
My favorite thing to eat is pizza or strawberries and vanilla yogurt.
Do you have a favorite sport or team outside of tennis?
I really love basketball. I played in high school and I love it. My favorite sports teams are the Detroit Pistons and the Indianapolis Colts.
Did you serve an LDS mission? If so, where?
Yes, I did serve in the Singapore, Malaysia Mission. I was English-speaking, but I picked up on quite a bit of Chinese while I was there.
What is your major at Southern Virginia University?
I’m not really sure what I want my major to be yet. I’m either going to go into business or some type of sports media. I’ll potentially major in one and minor in the other.
Name three people that you would like to have dinner with and why?
I would have dinner with Emma Watson for obvious reasons. Second, LeBron James, because he’s my favorite basketball player and I think he’s just a major stud. Last, I would go with Zac Efron because that man is just perfect in every single way.
Who's on your pre-match music playlist?
My pre-match playlist consists of anything loud with a fast beat. I just like to get really pumped up before I play.
What would you say to a prospective student looking into Southern Virginia for tennis?
For any prospective student looking into playing tennis for SVU, I would tell them to practice and get as good as you can before you come because our team is getting really good. I’d also tell them that our team is super tight-knit and we’re always doing something fun. We have a super awesome tennis facility and our team is undefeated so far this season!