After 29 Years Cal Women's Tennis Coach Jan Brogan Hangs it Up
June 4, 2007
By Matt Kawahara Daily Californian
June 4, 2007
Berkeley, CA (CSTV U-WIRE) -- The Cal women's tennis team lost one of its most established and esteemed members Friday, as coach Jan Brogan-the fourth-winningest coach in NCAA women's tennis history-announced her retirement after 29 years.Brogan's decision came one day after being named the ITA Northwest Region Coach of the Year for the fourth time. Brogan coached the Bears to the semifinals of the NCAA Tournament this year for the sixth time during her tenure, and guided her team to a No. 5 national ranking.
'I always felt that, someplace inside me, I would know when the time was right,' Brogan said. 'In some funny way I'd rather go out when things are great, and we've had great success in the last couple of years.'
Brogan's success at Cal has not just been limited to these last couple years, as indicated by her .707 career winning percentage. Her 539 wins puts her fourth in career victories among all Bears coaches. Under Brogan, Cal has never failed to reach the NCAA Tournament, and the Bears have finished in the top 10 nationally 19 times since 1982.
Brogan cited two reasons for stepping down after the 2007 season, with All-American selections Susie Babos and Nina Henkel returning next year.
'There's not really a chance to get away from coaching because it's year-round,' Brogan said. 'Once the season is over, recruiting goes through the summer, and then you're off again.
'The main reason for me choosing to do it this year is because it enables the new coach that comes in to recruit the players who will replace those four seniors (current juniors Babos, Stephanie Kusano, Marion Ravelojaona and Cristina Visico). It really would've been selfish of me to wait a year and recruit somebody else's team.'
Excellent recruitment and player development have allowed Brogan to produce 61 All-Americans and five conference players of the year in her 29 seasons, including the 2006 Pac-10 Player of the Year, Zsuzsanna Fodor, and the 2007 Pac-10 Doubles Team of the Year of Fodor and Babos.
Equally impressive has been the academic success of Brogan's athletes, who have garnered Pac-10 All-Academic honors 33 times since 1994, have been named Academic All-Americans four times and sport the highest graduation rate among athletics teams at Cal.
'With my training as an educator, I came into coaching with an educational philosophy,' said Brogan, who owns a California teaching credential and a Masters degree in sports psychology. 'I've always tried to be a coach/mentor to my players, and I think with that there's the responsibility to being committed to the student-athlete.'
With no clear successor, Brogan believes that a decision should be made soon, to give the new coach time to begin recruitment by the end of June, and hopes that she will have a little sway in the decision-making process.
'It's like having a 29 year old baby,' Brogan said. 'It has kind of been my child and I have a small investment in who's selected, but ultimately Sandy Barbour's going to make that decision.'
The one thing missing from Brogan's long list of accomplishments and accolades is a NCAA team championship. And while she is set strongly in her retirement right now, Brogan does not explicitly rule out a return to coaching.
'Honestly, that'll be something that I'll have to wait a year and see,' Brogan said. 'If I feel as excited and passionate about coaching as I do leaving, then yeah, I may resurface somewhere.'
(C) 2007 Daily Californian via CSTV U-WIRE