Nathan “Burch” Tucker, Jr. was the captain of the 1939 men’s tennis team at Emory & Henry. He was inducted into the Sports Hall of Fame in 2005 in honor of his athleticism and leadership.
In 1939, the men’s tennis team had only six members, but what they lacked in numbers they made up for in tenacity. They finished the season 8-0 against teams like Lynchburg, Milligan, Bluefield, East Tennessee State, and Concord. Tucker himself was 9-1 in doubles competition and undefeated in all 10 singles matches.
In the 1940 season, the team faced a more difficult schedule, including Presbyterian College which had one of the top ranked teams in the nation. The team managed an admirable 11-4 record and Burch finished 14-4.
In addition to tennis, Tucker also played basketball and was the captain of the 1940 team. He led the team in rebounds that year.
After graduating from Emory & Henry, Tucker joined the U.S. Navy during World War II and served in places like Africa, Italy, France, Guam, the Philippines, and Japan.
Burch Tucker, Jr. died on December 3, 2008 in Nashville, Tennessee at age 90.