September 18, 2018 | ° F

Bucca’s experience benefits program’s success


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Photo by Tian Li |

Senior Vanessa Petrini is one of several whom Head Coach Ben Bucca has tried to develop. Bucca, who sports a 132-94 record with Rutgers, said 99 percent of his players have played their best tennis their senior year.


Rutgers head tennis coach Ben Bucca is no stranger to the tennis courts at the University. Raised in central New Jersey, Bucca is used to seeing the block ‘R’ hanging all over campus.

“The timeline of my life has been on these same tennis courts,” Bucca said. “Growing up, being able to play here and watch the Rutgers tennis team practice over the years, it was a goal of mine to eventually coach at Rutgers.”

That came true for Bucca, who enters his 11th season at the helm and his 20th in the Scarlet Knights program, formerly serving as an assistant coach.

Over the past 10 seasons, Bucca has posted an impressive 132-94 record with the team and qualified for the Big East Tournament nine times.

But it is about more than just the results on the court for the Knights’ coach.

Bucca takes pride in leading the players on his team in the right direction.

“What I enjoy most about coaching is being a meaningful influence as they progress through their four years at Rutgers,” Bucca said. “I am proud that 99 percent of the players that I have coached have come here, played all four years, played their best tennis their senior year, and have graduated on time.”

Bucca played tennis at nearby St. Joseph’s (N.J) High School in Metuchen. He continued his career at Albright College, where he was team captain.

Rutgers’ coach is also involved in many community activities away from the tennis court.

Aside from leading various community service projects and practicing law in New Brunswick, Bucca is a member of both the New Brunswick Board of Education and Board of Directors at St. Peter’s University Hospital.

All of the accomplishments and accolades aside, Bucca has a special place in his heart for coaching.

“My responsibilities start with coaching. It was a goal of mine to eventually coach at Rutgers, so it is fulfilling for me to have this opportunity,” Bucca said. “It’s been a great run and it has given me a lot of pride to be affiliated with this university, and a very strong tennis program that represents what’s best in college athletics.”

For updates on the Rutgers tennis team, follow @TargumSports on Twitter.


By Louis Petrella

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