Over the next week, GoDuke.com will honor the seven 2013 Duke Athletics Hall of Fame inductees with their own Hall of Fame Spotlight, a seven-question interview that covers their time at Duke, the people that most influenced their remarkable careers, their advice to current student-athletes, and more.
Next up, legendary Duke women's tennis player, Julie Exum Breuer. Breuer, a native of Jacksonville, Fla., was a two-time All-America pick and two-time National Collegiate Clay Court singles champion while helping Duke’s women’s tennis squad to 92 victories, a perfect 29-0 ledger in ACC regular season action and four ACC Championships. Owner of a career singles record of 135-41, she won the National Collegiate Clay Court singles crowns in both 1990 and 1992, established the school’s single-season record for victories (52 in 1991) and later graduated as the program’s all-time leader in wins. Breuer, who earned All-America honors in both 1991 and 1993 and was a four-time All-ACC pick, was the ACC Tournament’s Most Valuable Player as a freshman in 1990. As a senior, she became the first player in program history to earn the nation’s number one ranking in singles play.
GoDuke.com: Why did you choose Duke?
Julie Exum Breuer: My dad always says that I got it in my head very early that I liked Duke. Honestly, it probably stemmed from watching basketball. That and I knew that I wanted to go somewhere where academics was important.
GoDuke.com: What was your proudest sports-related moment at Duke?
JEB: Individually, I would say the first tournament that I won my sophomore year. When you first get to school you’re trying to get your footing and see how everything works. And then my fall semester I won the national clay courts. It just felt like a really good moment where I was defining myself.
GoDuke.com: What was your fondest memory of Duke outside of sports?
JEB: I think the silly things we used to do with friends are some of my fondest memories. My husband I met here at Duke. We met early on my freshman year but we didn’t date until my junior year. With him and friends of mine, the time we spent on campus is full of great memories.
GoDuke.com: Who had the most influence on you during your time at Duke?
JEB: My coaches and teammates. It was such a learning experience because I didn’t really play on a team growing up. Tennis is such an individual sport so I think that we all influenced each other and it really brought out a fun, close-knit group side of me that I didn’t even really know was there.
GoDuke.com: What advice do you have for current Duke student-athletes?
JEB: Just enjoy the moments that you have and the time you have doing this because you’ll never have it again. It’s something that you can never replace.
GoDuke.com: What separates Duke from other schools athletically?
JEB: I think the emphasis on bringing student-athletes who can live up to the academic standards that they set here.
GoDuke.com: What is your reaction when you hear your name and ‘Duke Athletics Hall of Famer’ in the same sentence?
JEB: Just thrilled; amazed. It was a real surprise to me when I got the call this summer. I’m just incredibly proud to be identified with Duke Athletics.