Former Duke star Jeff Capel is in his seventh season on the Duke staff, and fourth as associate head coach, after spending the previous nine years as a head coach in the college game.
Capel owns a 175-110 record as a head coach at VCU and Oklahoma with three NCAA Tournament appearances, taking OU to the Elite Eight in 2008.
In six seasons on the Duke coaching staff, Capel has helped the program compile a 171-46 (.788) record, a national championship in 2015 and the 2017 ACC Tournament championship. During the 2016-17 season, he served as acting head coach for seven games following head coach Mike Krzyzewski's back surgery. Capel led Duke to a 4-3 record over that stretch, including consecutive road wins at Wake Forest and Notre Dame that sparked a seven-game winning streak in the midst of ACC play.
Capel has been a force on the recruiting trail since returning to his alma mater, helping Duke secure the talents of 15 McDonald's All-Americans in the last six years. The Blue Devils have had a top-two class in the ESPN recruiting rankings in each of the last four years, including top billing in both 2014 and 2015.
Capel has also been instrumental in the development of that young talent. The Blue Devils have produced 12 first-round picks in the NBA Draft during Capel's six-year tenure, including seven lottery picks. Duke has had at least one first-round selection every season and multiple first-round picks in four of the six years Capel has been on staff. Six of the 15 McDonald's All-Americans Capel has helped recruit to Duke have been lottery picks.
He was crucial to the signing of the 2014 class that was ranked No. 1 in the nation and featured Grayson Allen, Tyus Jones, Jahlil Okafor and Justise Winslow. That class was the catalyst for Duke's fifth national championship in 2015.
Capel's close work with Jabari Parker (2014) and Okafor (2015) led to both being named All-Americans, earning National Freshman of the Year honors and being top-three picks in their respective NBA Drafts. Winslow and Jones were also taken 10th and 24th overall, respectively, in the 2015 NBA Draft.
Capel was vital to the rapid ascent of Brandon Ingram from elite recruit to NBA lottery pick, helping mold him into a Freshman All-American and the ACC Freshman of the Year in 2016 before the Lakers took him with the No. 2 overall pick in that year's draft.
In 2017, Capel was a major influence on Jayson Tatum, an All-ACC selection and the No. 3 overall choice in the NBA Draft by the Boston Celtics.
Capel began his coaching career as an assistant to his father, Jeff Capel II, at Old Dominion for the 2000-01 season. In 2001, he joined the staff at VCU as an assistant coach and was promoted to head coach prior to the 2002-03 campaign – making him, at the time, the youngest head coach in Division I men's college basketball at 27 years of age.
In 2004, Capel guided the Rams to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in almost a decade and nearly scored a first-round upset of fourth-seeded Wake Forest. He compiled a 79-41 record in four years as head coach at VCU before being named head coach at Oklahoma on April 11, 2006.
While at OU, Capel led the Sooners to a 96-69 record with two NCAA Tournament berths. His crowning achievement in Norman was the development of 2009 National Player of the Year Blake Griffin, who became the first Oklahoma player to be taken No. 1 overall in the NBA Draft. Griffin won both NBA Rookie of the Year and the NBA Slam Dunk Contest in 2011.
Capel played a prominent role with USA Basketball during Krzyzewski's last four years as head coach of the U.S. National Team. After serving as a court coach and scout for the squad in 2013, Capel was a staff assistant for the USA's gold-medal effort at the 2014 FIBA World Cup in Spain and the United States' unprecedented run to a third consecutive gold medal at the 2016 Rio Olympics.
Capel has head coaching experience with USA Basketball. In the summer of 2010, he led a USA team featuring former Duke stars Kyrie Irving and Austin Rivers to the gold medal at the FIBA Americas U18 Championship in San Antonio, Texas. He was also an assistant coach for the gold medal-winning U.S. team at the 2005 World University Games in Turkey, a squad that featured Duke All-American and two-time National Defensive Player of the Year Shelden Williams.
A standout prep performer, Capel was named the 1993 North Carolina High School Player of the Year after leading Fayetteville South View to a 31-1 record and a state championship.
He made an immediate impact at Duke and was a four-year starter for the Blue Devils, leading the team to 83 wins and a trip to the 1994 national championship game. He racked up 1,601 points, 433 assists and 220 three-point field goals, finishing among Duke's career leaders in minutes played, three-pointers made, three-point field goal percentage and assists.
Capel served as a team captain in both 1996 and 1997, and earned third-team All-ACC accolades as a junior in 1996.
Following his collegiate career, Capel played professionally for two years. He spent the 1997-98 season with the CBA's Grand Rapids Hoops. In 1999-00, he played in France before returning to Grand Rapids.
Capel graduated from Duke with a B.A. in history in 1997. He and his wife, Kanika, married in 2003. They have two daughters, Cameron and Sydney, and a son, Elijah.
Capel's younger brother, Jason, was a four-year starter at North Carolina and was the head coach at Appalachian State from 2011-14.