UND Staff

Debby King

Women's Golf Head Coach


Since she came to Notre Dame in
2001, head coach Debby King has
guided the Fighting Irish women[apos]s
golf program to unprecedented levels.
King has led the Irish to 11 team
tournament victories in her tenure,
including two BIG EAST Tournament titles
in 2003 and 2004. Most importantly, she has
also steered Notre Dame to the program[apos]s
first two trips to the NCAA Tournament in
2004 and 2005 and has established the Irish
on the national scene.

King was named head coach of the
University of Notre Dame women[apos]s golf
team on August 21, 2001, becoming the third
head coach in the 16-year history of the program.
The first full-time coach in the program[apos]s
history, King wasted little time in elevating
the Notre Dame program to the next level.
Under her direction, the Irish have realized
extraordinary success, including winning
the first-ever BIG EAST Women[apos]s Golf
Championship in 2003 and following that
up with the 2004 conference title en route to
the program[apos]s inaugural trip to the NCAA

Expectations were high heading into the
2004-05 campaign and King had her team
ready for another impressive run, which
included a school-record four tournament
victories and four medalist finishes. The
year ended with Notre Dame playing in the
NCAA Central Regional for the second
straight season and just the second time in
program history. The Fighting Irish finished
18-shots better in the 2005 regional compared
to the year before. This has King and her
team focused on its next goal, which is to
make the leap to the NCAA Finals.

[quote]Last year was a very successful year. We
made it to regionals and we were closer to
advancing to finals than the year before, so
that was progress,[quote] says the native of Slidell,

In four-and-a-half seasons under King, the
Notre Dame team has experienced dramatic
improvements. Prior to King[apos]s arrival, the
Irish had a team-stroke average of 323.26 in
2000-01; Notre Dame concluded the fall of
2005 with an amazing school-record semester
average of 301.71.

To say that King[apos]s teams have rewritten
the Notre Dame record
books would be an
understatement. A Kingled
squad owns all 10 of
the top 54-hole tournament
scores and nine of
the top 10 low-team
rounds in Fighting Irish
history. There have also
been numerous individual
records established
during King[apos]s tenure at
Notre Dame, including
the top nine career-stroke
averages and top 10 season-
stroke averages.

After four outstanding
seasons, King[apos]s current
squad is in the midst of
its greatest statistical
season in the program[apos]s
history. The energetic
coach is impressed by
how fast her players
have responded to higher
goals and have continued
to improve all facets
of their games.

[quote]After we struggled at our home tournament this fall, we had a
pretty significant talk and the rest of the
way was pretty awesome,[quote] says King. [quote]For
the most part this fall was fantastic. We had
a stretch where seven of nine rounds were
under 300 and that[apos]s more than we[apos]ve ever

[quote]We keep taking steps in the right direction.
When I first arrived, I knew the goal
here was to get into the national top-25.
When I got the head coaching position here,
I told (director of athletics) Kevin White I felt
it would take five years to get to that point.
The team was 107th when I first started and
it[apos]s great to see where we are in the country

With this marking her fifth season at
Notre Dame, King has already exceeded
expectations for her initial five-year plan.
The team debuted in the top-25 of the
Golfstat.com rankings in October of 2004 at
No. 18 after winning the Jeannine McHaney
Invitational/Central Regional Preview.

[quote]Winning the
central (regional preview)
is the biggest win
we[apos]ve had since I[apos]ve
been here,[quote] says King.
Katie Brophy, a current
senior co-captain and a
member of King[apos]s first
recruiting class at Notre
Dame, took home medalist
honors at the
McHaney Invitational to
improve her career win
total to three, another
Irish record established
under King. The
Fighting Irish have captured
a total of seven
medalist finishes
throughout King[apos]s tenure.
Current junior Noriko
Nakazaki has two wins
during her career to go
along with a 76.00 scoring-
average, which
places her first in Irish
history in that category.

King laid the groundwork
for this unprecedented success in her first season with the
Irish in 2001-02. As a team, the Irish had three
top-four finishes and ended the season with a
team average of 323.59, good for sixth-best in
school history at that time.

In 2002-03, Notre Dame made impressive
strides under King[apos]s guidance. With her first
recruiting class, she brought in five talented
freshmen, hailing from as far as Ireland. Two
of those freshmen, Brophy and Sarah Bassett,
finished the schedule with the top two stroke
averages on the team and led the squad to a
316.29 team scoring average, the lowest team
average (for an entire season) in the history of
the program at that time. Notre Dame closed
out the year by winning the first-ever BIG
EAST Women[apos]s Golf Championship. The Irish
had three freshmen in the scoring five at the
conference championship and had four
golfers finish in the top five to earn all-BIG
EAST honors for [apos]02-[apos]03, including Brophy who
took co-medalist honors.

The program extended its rise in 2003-04 by
building off the prior accomplishments of
King[apos]s first two squads. Freshman Noriko
Nakazaki continued the trend of rookie success
as she led the Fighting Irish in a recordsetting
eight tournaments. Notre Dame
captured three tournament victories in the
fall of 2003, tying the school record for tournament
victories in an entire season.

The Irish added to that
total in the spring as they won
their second straight BIG EAST
title and saw three golfers
(Nakazaki, Brophy, Karen
Lotta) collect all-BIG EAST
honors. A trip to the NCAA
Central Regional capped off
the greatest year in the history
of the program to that point.
King came to Notre Dame
after six seasons as the head
golf coach at the University of
Memphis where her teams
won two Conference USA titles
(1997, 2001), produced 16 allconference
players, one conference
player-of-the-year and
two conference rookies-of-theyear.
During her six years at
Memphis, King guided her
teams to five consecutive trips
to the NCAA Golf Regionals
from 1997 through 2001. Her 2000-01 squad won the
Conference USA tournament
and finished 14th at the NCAA
West Regional. Rookie of the
Year, Meghan Francella,
advanced to the NCAA finals
but was forced to withdraw
with an injury.

In announcing King as the
new women[apos]s golf coach, Notre
Dame athletic director Kevin
White said, [quote]We are very
excited to be naming Debby King as the
women[apos]s golf coach at Notre Dame. She
brings with her outstanding qualifications as
a coach and a teacher at Memphis. With
Debby taking over as our full-time coach,
plus the addition of scholarships and our
facilities at the Warren Golf Course, we have
now put our women[apos]s golf program in the
position to compete at the national level.[quote]

King believes that Notre Dame has a great
deal to offer prospective student-athletes
both academically and athletically.

[quote]I think the prestige of coming to Notre
Dame is important. The tradition of both academics
and athletics is what players and
their parents are interested in,[quote] says King.

[quote]We have a great new golf course and
when we finish our state-of-the-art indoor
golf facility (part of the overall athletic master
plan) in the next year, that will complete the
entire package. I[apos]m very excited about what
we have to offer here at Notre Dame,[quote] says

King took over at Memphis in the fall of
1995 and led the Tigers to the Memphis
Women[apos]s Intercollegiate Invitational championship
in her first tournament as head coach.

Her teams at Memphis went on to win six
individual tournament titles. In 1997, King
was named Conference USA[apos]s Coach of the
Year as Memphis won its first conference
title and advanced to the
NCAA[apos]s for the first time under her

A former collegiate player at
Florida Atlantic University, King
moved to the professional ranks as
an assistant golf pro at St. Andrew[apos]s Country
Club in Boca Raton, Florida. In 1985 she
attended the LPGA Qualifying School and for
the next five years played on the Asian Tour,
the Futures Golf Tour and worked as a teaching

As a player, King won the 1991
Massachusetts Women[apos]s Open, the 1993 West
Tennessee Assistants Championship, and in
1995, the Tour America Championship.

Before taking the head-coaching job at
Memphis, King was a noted teaching professional
at the Windyke Country Club in
Memphis. In 1996, she was named the PGA
West Tennessee Teacher of the Year and in
1997, the LPGA National Coach of the Year.

King is an LPGA Class A member, a PGA
Class A member and is a member of the
National Golf Coaches Association.