(Pioneer Press) When Steve Brooks played at Libertyville High School, Glenbrook South won a state championship in 2000.
After spending last season as an assistant coach at his alma mater, Brooks couldn’t pass up an opportunity to lead the Titans another trophy.
“It’s tough being an assistant because you can’t be everything you want to be,” said Brooks, who leads Glenbrook South into its opener Thursday at home against Evanston. “I know I wanted to give myself a shot. I think down the road I’d like to be a college coach.”
Brooks knows a lot about overcoming odds and achieving success.
Coming from the Midwest, Brooks was able to play his way to Syracuse, one of the top college programs in the country, and help the Orange to a national title in 2008 as a senior. He also was named to the All-American first team.
Once Brooks finishes up his rookie season as a head coach, he will return to the playing field as a member of the Chesapeake Bayhawks. After leaving college, he played pro lacrosse for two seasons with the Chicago Machine before getting traded to the Bayhawks.
The pro season starts May 14.
In the meantime, Brooks will try to take the Titans past traditional powerhouses New Trier and Loyola. The Trevians own the last six state titles.
“I have had great coaches, and I learned a lot from them,” said the 26-year-old Brooks. “The East Coast plays the true form of lacrosse, and that’s what I am going to teach. I am going to get the athletes to learn the basics and go on from there.
“If they believe in me and trust me, all else is going to work out in the long run.”
Brooks will lean on seniors Doug Cummings, Geoff Harty, Chris Schwanz and Jon Newman for leadership on and off the field.
“I have a lot of faith in our seniors to lead the young guys,” Brooks said.