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Celebrating Dan Brooks’ 40th Year of Coaching: A Duke Legacy

If you’ve grown up dreaming of playing college (and professional) golf, you’ve likely thought about playing at Duke University. Their dominance in NCAA Championships – especially their 3-peat from 2005 to 2007 – kept them at the top of the rankings for those hoping to be recruited by Coach Dan Brooks.

Brooks is celebrating his 40th year of coaching in 2024, and his legacy is firmly established not only at Duke (where he has coached all 40 years), but also in the women’s golf world. His program has produced world-renowned LPGA Tour players like Liz Janangelo, Amanda Blumenherst, Lindy Duncan and, most recently, Celine Boutier, Leona Maguire and Jaravee Boonchant.

With such an impact on the women’s game, Brooks hopes to continue advocating for his players for years to come. Fairway to Green’s Kelly Okun had an opportunity to chat with Brooks about his rich history at Duke as well as the program’s future.

In the video, you’ll hear Brooks’ take on why he has been so successful (7 NCAA Championship titles, 140+ wins and a Duke Hall of Fame induction, to name a few achievements). It’s evident through his answers and watching him with his players that he truly cares about their well-being and has succeeded in his goal of recruiting “special people.”

Duke University Golf Course at the Washington Duke Inn & Golf Club.
Duke University Golf Course at the Washington Duke Inn & Golf Club. Courtesy of Duke Athletics.

Brooks credits Duke’s facilities, especially the Duke University Golf Course, for his success. If you’ve ever played Duke’s golf course in Durham, NC, you can appreciate how difficult it is. Brooks believes training on such a challenging golf course is the best way to prepare his student-athletes for tournaments; if they can conquer this golf course, they can play anywhere.

On the recruiting side, Brooks ensures “student” stays part of the “student-athlete” job description. Duke has a rigorous curriculum that requires a strong academic background, but he says it goes beyond that: if you have the discipline to succeed in school, you’re more likely to implement that discipline on the golf course. That work ethic, plus the drive to “want it all,” is what Brooks looks for in his recruits.

While Brooks hopes he’ll be able to coach for another 40 years, it’s clear his legacy will continue to live on through all the players he has supported over the last several decades, even after he decides to retire. Here’s hoping that happens in 2064.

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