It didn't take long for Trake Carpenter to land his first head coaching job in college golf.
Less than a year after leaving Marquette University in Milwaukee for an assistant coaching position at Stanford, the former right-hand man to Golden Eagles coach Steve Bailey is on the move again. Carpenter was named Wednesday as the head coach at the University of Denver, replacing Erik Billinger, who resigned June 26 citing family obligations.
The Pioneers won the 2019 Summit League championship behind medalist Cal McCoy, but did not get to defend their title this spring after COVID-19 canceled the spring golf season across the country. McCoy, who will be a junior this fall, is one of eight returning golfers Carpenter will inherit this fall, which won't begin until Sept. 23 following a directive this week from the Summit League.
“Trake’s infectious energy, positive attitude and approach to coaching the game of golf set himself apart to the committee and we couldn’t be happier to bring him on board,” Karlton Creech, vice chancellor for Athletics, Recreation and Ritchie Center Operations, said in a statement. “He’ll fit in well with our culture here at DU, and he brings experience from a few different high-quality programs that our student-athletes can benefit from as we look to take the next step as a program.”
Carpenter, who played collegiately, played an instrumental role in Marquette's success during the 2017-18 and 2018-19 seasons. The latter producing a Big East Conference championship and a trip to the NCAA Division I regionals.
Both years, Bailey and Carpenter were recognized as Big East coaching staff of the year. In addition, Carpenter played a key role in recruiting, social media, budgeting, fundraising and led the program’s strength and conditioning efforts.
At Stanford, the Cardinal finished in the top three of six tournaments while seven individuals recorded top-10 finishes as well.
“I am incredibly excited to join the University of Denver family,” Carpenter said in a statement. “It was evident throughout the interview process that DU is committed to building a nationally competitive men’s golf program. I’ve been lucky to work with some of the best coaches in the country and see the blueprint of how programs take things to the next level. I’m grateful that Karlton Creech and all the staff at DU have trusted me to help them execute their vision. Stuart Halsall, Lindsay Kuhle, and Christina Pachuta are tremendous ambassadors for the division and I can’t thank them enough for their efforts. Everyone in athletics are first-class people with a commitment to excellence that is contagious. I’m looking forward to pushing Pioneer Golf to the next level with them!”