Student athlete profile

Name: Brooke Cooper

Year: senior

Hometown: Burr Ridge

When did you first start playing volleyball?

I started playing volleyball when I was in third grade, but I never really got into club until (age) 11.

What do you enjoy most about the sport?

I played tennis before I played volleyball, and it was a very lonely sport, I felt. When I got into volleyball and I felt that team energy, I loved it and wanted to get more serious and see where it would take me.

How has COVID-19 affected competitions?

It definitely gave me more of an appreciation just for court time and being with my teammates and having the ability to play with them.

Do you have any pre-meet rituals or routines?

I am probably the most superstitious person you will ever meet in your entire life. I stand in the same spot on the sideline. I warm up in the same spot. I do everything the same.

What is the best advice you've gotten from a coach?

I've gotten a lot of good advice. I think most of my good advice came from my coach, Tracey Marshall (who passed away April 2, 2020). She would always tell me no matter what, keep your head up and never settle for anything less than your best.

What are your plans for the fall?

I'm so lucky - I am committed to Cornell University. I will be heading to Ithaca, N.Y., in the fall to play volleyball there. I'm also going to be getting a really good education.

What is it like having your former coach's best friend as your new coach?

I think she's doing a really amazing job filling the huge shoes that Coach Marshall left behind for her. I just think she is doing a fantastic job with our program.

Why does Coach Lisa Tazelaar like having Cooper on the team?

Brooke is the true definition of a work horse. She pushes herself to improve her game and strives to be the best player in the gym. She has not hit her ceiling yet, and I cannot wait to see how she will elevate her game at the next level. I just wish I would have had a full season with her as she would have been a game changer this year.

- profile by Pamela Lannom, photo by Jim Slonoff