Courtesy: Duke Sports Information
B.J. Linnenbrink joined the Duke track & field staff as an assistant coach in July of 2009, specializing in throws for both men and women.
The 2014 season ended with redshirt junior Thomas Lang earning Duke’s third All-America honor in the javelin. The top-16 finish marks the first since Duke school record holder, John Austin, secured the same accolade in 2011. Prior to his 11th-place finish at the NCAA Outdoor Championships, Lang won the conference title in exciting fashion, claiming the victory on his sixth and final attempt by sending the implement 229-1 (69.83), the second farthest mark in Duke history.
Lang qualified for the NCAA Outdoor Championships after placing seventh at the NCAA East Preliminary Round meet. Under Linnenbrink's guidance, a total of five Duke throwers advanced to the preliminary round meet and competed in four different throwing events.
In addition to Lang, multiple throwers saw similar success at the conference level. Redshirt junior Stephen Boals garnered All-ACC honors in the shot put during the indoor season after placing second and setting a school record mark of 59-4.25 (18.09), while recent graduate Michelle Anumba received the same accolade after finishing third with a season-best distance of 52-10.75 (16.12). A total of 11 top-five Duke throws performances came during the 2014 season, with records falling in the men’s indoor shot put and the women’s weight throw.
The Blue Devil throwing program continues to perform at a high level with Linnenbrink at the helm. In 2012, the throwing program had one of its best performances in school history, including sophomore Michelle Anumba accomplishing the task of being the first Duke female thrower to earn first team All-America honors. Under Linnenbrink’s direction, four throwers qualified for the 2012 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championship: Anumba (shot put), Michael Barbas (shot put), Erica Brand (discus) and Andrea Hopkins (javelin). Also in the outdoor season, Anumba (shot put) and Shannon Sullivan (javelin) finished first at the ACC Championships in their respective events while Barbas (shot put), Brand (discus) and Hopkins (javelin) earned All-ACC honors for finishing in the top three in their respective events.
Throughout his Duke tenure, Linnenbrink has coached four All-Americans, six ACC Champions and 20 athletes to All-ACC honors. At the conclusion of the 2014 season, his athletes combined to own 11 of the 12 school records in throwing events at Duke.
Prior to his arrival at Duke, Linnenbrink held a similar position at Notre Dame from 2003-07. During that period, he tutored 15 NCAA Regional qualifiers and 17 All-BIG EAST performers, including 2005 BIG EAST hammer throw champion Chip Roberts. In addition, he guided Notre Dame’s first female thrower to qualify for the NCAA Championships as well as the first Irish thrower to advance to the outdoor NCAA competition since 1945.
Linnenbrink saw his Irish throwers advance to the NCAA Mideast Regional 15 times in five seasons with two qualifying for the USATF Championships. Additionally, the Notre Dame top-10 lists were radically altered in almost every throwing event under his direction with his student-athletes claiming 10 top-10 efforts on the men’s side and a staggering 26 top-10 performances on the women’s side.
As a member of Notre Dame’s staff, he was part of five BIG EAST Coaching Staff’s of the Year - 2003 & 2005 men’s indoor, 2003 & 2006 men’s outdoor and 2006 women’s indoor.
A former NCAA and USATF Championship qualifier at Florida State, Linnenbrink owns the Seminole school record in the weight throw (20.91m/68-7.25) and ranks among the top-five in FSU history in the hammer throw (59.48m/195-2), earning All-Atlantic Coast Conference accolades as a senior.
Before his successful two-year stint at Florida State, Linnenbrink dominated at the junior college level, where he earned two NJCAA All-America honors at Johnson County Community College in Overland Park, Kan., in addition to seven All-Jayhawk East Conference awards.
Linnenbrink received a bachelor of science degree in physical education from Florida State in 2002 and in 2006, he earned his master of science degree in physical education from Emporia State.
He is a USATF Level II certified coach in throwing events.
Linnenbrink and his wife, the former Monica Hardy, married July 31, 2004.