NCAA Womens Tennis

Remembering Andy Brandi (1952-2024) – Florida Gators

Andy Brandi - 2017 LSU headshot

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Old-school University of Florida folks will recall the old multipurpose O’Connell Center and the 200-meter indoor track that encircled the second level. One day, a good three decades ago, Jeremy Foley walked into the facility and happened upon the women’s tennis team doing sprint work. The UF athletic director stopped and watched as Andy Brandi, the hard-driving and famously fit coach of those Lady Gators, was running with but trailing (barely) the pack, and doing so with a warning. 

“Don’t let me catch you!” Brandi yelled. 


Andi Brandi

They never did, nor would have dared. Brandi pushed his players to greatness and the results spilled out across the UF tennis complex in the form of dozens of championships and All Americans during a spectacular and generational Hall-of-Fame career. 

Chasing greatness was what Brandi’s life was about and it was a chase that ended Thursday when Brandi, 72, died in Boca Raton following an illness. He left behind his wife, Nancy, and son Chris.

“Simply put, Andy Brandi was a winner in every sense of the word,” said Foley, who was named UF athletic director in March 1992 and was rewarded with his first NCAA title on the job by Brandi’s women about two months later. “He was one of my all-time favorite coaches here.” 

And the winningest coach, by percentage, ever to lead a Florida team. 

Over the course of Brandi’s 17 seasons, Florida won 14 regular-season SEC titles (and lost just six league matches), 10 conference tournament crowns and captured national team championships in the 1992, ’96 and ’98 seasons. His won-loss record at UF was an astounding 460-43 (a winning percentage of .914), including 196-6 in SEC dual matches (.970). Brandi, a 2006 “Gator Great” and inductee into the UF Athletics Hall of Fame, was the first Florida coach to lead one program to three NCAA titles.

“He was a fabulous coach, first and foremost,” said Andrea Farley, a four-year standout for Brandi in the early 90s. “But Andy also was a great teacher in life, as well. A great mentor and person.” 

Brandi retired in 2001 to return to coaching the professional ranks. In 2017, he came out of retirement to join his son as co-head coach for the LSU men’s team, a post he held for five seasons. The last two years he had been coaching part-time in South Florida, but Brandi’s brand long ago had gone international.  

“Andy Brandi was a giant among tennis coaches and a wonderful human being,” International Tennis…

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