Menlo News April 28, 2023

Legendary tennis coach Bill Shine to retire after 2023-24

‘He knows that tennis is about developing resilient, capable adults not state champions though, ironically, this approach is exactly what produces champions both on the court and in life.’

4.28.2023 – Bill Shine is wrapping up nearly three decades at the helm of Menlo School’s girls’ and boys’ tennis, and next school year – the 2023-2024 girls’ and boys’ season – will be his coaching curtain call to a remarkable and storied career.

Shine has coached the Menlo boys’ and girls’ teams to a combined 27 Central Coast Section titles and 24 NorCal Championships. In the fall of 2022, the Menlo girls advanced to the section semifinals, and currently, the boys are entering the postseason as West Bay Athletic League champions with an 18-1 overall record. Shine’s impact reaches far beyond the numbers.

“Bill’s genius as a coach is that he fields consistently strong teams by getting the most out of the athletes he has while avoiding the ‘win at all costs’ shortcuts that many around him fall prey to,” Menlo Head of School Than Healy said. “When you watch Bill coach, you never see him yelling anything nor does he do the thinking for the player. The more intense the match the more likely it is that Bill serves as consultant than instructor or coach. He knows that what he wants at the end of the process is for his athletes to be able to navigate frustration, pressure and even mildly unethical opponents on their own, so Bill assiduously avoids doing that for them.

“He knows that tennis is about developing resilient, capable adults not state champions though, ironically, this approach is exactly what produces champions both on the court and in life.”

Shine’s reach in the community is just as far. He has started hosting national prep tournaments, and with Monta Vista coach Gene Fortino, has drawn some of the top teams around the country annually. They also started a Bay Area memorial tournament as tribute to a young Bay Area coach.

Shine was inducted into the United States Tennis Association NorCal Hall of Fame last June for his playing and coaching career. He is in the Peninsula Sports Hall of Fame, Menlo’s Hall of Fame, and California Coaches Association Coach of the Year for Boys (2008) and Girls (2000). He was nominated for Positive Coaching Alliance Double-Goal Coach and National High School Athletic Association Coach of the Year.

“It’s been a long process, and took a lot of time to make a decision like this,” Shine said. “My wife Denise and I had talked about me retiring, then the pandemic hit and I didn’t really want to quit on the kids, I wanted to wait through this season.”

For Shine, it has always been about the kids. An all-conference player at Louisiana-Lafayette, Shine was coaching to earn money to keep competing as a pro. When his students would come home from tournaments, telling him how they did, Shine was fully invested and fell in love with coaching. Today, Shine still receives calls and sees scores of students – now with children of their own – who have come through his program and plenty who know him simply from being on campus.

After summer of 2024, he intends to be very much a part of Menlo Athletics, going to games as always to support students and coaches, participating in the Knights faculty-staff pickleball league he started, and serving as an unofficial coaching consultant, and likely still will be wearing his lifeguard straw hat and sunglasses.

“Honestly, I would love to have another seven years here, but I will just be a fly on the wall,” he said “I will still be a Knight forever.”

While his name is synonymous with decades of nationally recognized Menlo tennis teams and eye-popping record streaks, it’s his work on a daily basis - teaching Middle School students, working with his all players up and down the lineup, helping colleagues, and building the tennis community - that has such a wide-ranging impact.

“Bill Shine is truly a legend,” Menlo Director of Athletics Earl Koberlein said. “Bill’s legacy at Menlo School will continue for the foreseeable future. HIs impact on our student-athletes, staff, the Menlo community and the wider tennis community has been immeasurable.

“His unwavering commitment to excellence, leadership, sportsmanship and to his student-athletes has enabled him to build an incredible high school tennis program that has endured nearly three decades. We can’t thank him enough for his tremendous contributions to the Menlo School tennis program, and we are so grateful that he is teaching and coaching another year here.”