NASHVILLE, Tenn. - - Belmont University Director of Athletics Scott Corley announced Monday the hiring of Bart Brooks as the fifth head women's basketball coach in program history.
"We are extremely excited that Bart has accepted our offer to lead our women's basketball program," Corley said. "Bart embodies everything we were looking for in a candidate: high character, enthusiasm, passion for the players, and winning pedigree on the court. He is the right person to lead this program and build upon the incredible momentum it has achieved. I look forward to working with Bart and getting to know his wife, Charlene, and family."
Belmont will formally introduce Brooks as head coach at a Tuesday press conference.
Brooks, 36, comes to Belmont after spending the past 11 seasons on staff at DePaul University under legendary head coach Doug Bruno. The Blue Demons made the NCAA Tournament every season of Brooks' stint, standing as one of only six NCAA Division I women's basketball programs to make 15 consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances (Connecticut, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Stanford, Tennessee).
During Brooks' tenure, DePaul posted a combined 266-109 (.709) record, claiming six Big East Conference championships and advancing to three Sweet 16s (2011, 2014, 2016). In 2017, DePaul went 27-8, finishing No. 16 in the RPI and advancing to the NCAA Round of 32 before falling to National Runner-Up, Mississippi State.
All told, Brooks coached 33 All-Big East student-athletes, including each of the past three Big East Conference Player of the Year recipients (Brittany Hrynko, 2015; Chanise Jenkins, 2016; Brooke Schulte, 2017).
Annually among the nation's highest scoring teams – DePaul ranked No. 10 in scoring offense this past season – the Blue Demons have made 200 or more 3-point field goals in 16 of the last 18 campaigns. Brooks, respected in the coaching industry for his detailed scouting reports, was an integral part in DePaul ranking in the Top 25 nationally in 10 statistical categories in 2017, including fifth in 3-point field goals made, fifth in assists per game, sixth in assist-to-turnover ratio, and 12th in rebounds.
Brooks coached six WNBA draft choices – Jenna Rubino, Allie Quigley, Felicia Chester, Keisha Hampton, Brittany Hrynko, and Jessica January – the latter selected in the 2017 WNBA Draft. January was also named CoSIDA Academic All-America First Team, the first DePaul student-athlete so honored.
Along the line of academics, DePaul and Belmont mirror each other regarding a holistic approach to the student-athlete experience. The Blue Demons have made the Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) Team Academic Top 25 each of the past nine seasons, including the nation's second-highest team GPA in 2013 and third-highest a year ago.
Brooks began his coaching career at Barry University (FL), where he earned in master's degree in sport management.
A native of Buffalo, Wyoming, Brooks earned a bachelor's degree in kinesiology and health from the University of Wyoming in 2004.
He is married to the former Charlene Smith, who played five years professionally including time with the WNBA Houston Comets. They are parents to Trey Allen.
Brooks succeeds Cameron Newbauer, who accepted the head women's basketball coaching position at the University of Florida.
Belmont University women's basketball is 51-15 over its last two seasons, which includes consecutive trips to the NCAA Tournament and Ohio Valley Conference championships. The Bruins earned 29 votes in the Associated Press Top 25 poll leading into the NCAA Tournament – a program record for any sport in Belmont's NCAA Division I era.
About Belmont University
Ranked No. 6 in the Regional Universities South category and named as a "Most Innovative" university by U.S. News & World Report, Belmont University consists of more than 7,700 students who come from every state and more than 25 countries. Committed to being a leader among teaching universities, Belmont brings together the best of liberal arts and professional education in a Christian community of learning and service. The University's purpose is to help students explore their passions and develop their talents to meet the world's needs. With more than 90 areas of undergraduate study, 19 master's programs and five doctoral degrees, there is no limit to the ways Belmont University can expand an individual's horizon. For more information, visit www.belmont.edu.