The Wolverine

August 2016

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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  WHERE ARE THEY NOW? BY JOHN BORTON G e t t i n g f o r m e r U‑M All‑Amer‑ ican pitcher Marissa Yo u n g ' s v o i c e m a i l these days represents a bridge from the past to the future. She wraps up a brief entreaty to leave a mes‑ sage with the words: "Go Blue … Devils." Young officially be‑ came Duke's head soft‑ ball coach on July 29, 2015. She doesn't have a team yet, and her sta‑ dium remains a work in process, but the for‑ mer Wolverine stands immensely ex‑ cited to be handed the keys to a new ride that's a different hue of blue. "Duke is a place that reminds me a lot of Michigan," Young reflected. "The tradition and when people hear the name, there's that wow factor. People just have so much pride in their school. It's a tight‑knit commu‑ nity and all of that. "After going to a place like Michi‑ gan, your standards are pretty high as to what you want and what you think is a great atmosphere. Duke is great, and I was obviously really excited to land the job. Now we've got a big task in building this thing from scratch." Young views the challenge as a once‑in‑a‑lifetime opportunity. She loves the Raleigh/Durham area, and settled there with her husband and three kids while serving as an assis‑ tant coach at the University of North Carolina in 2014 and '15. Prior to that, she coached as an assistant at Eastern Michigan (2012‑13) and as head coach at Concordia University in Ann Arbor (2008‑11), following a two‑year stint in pro softball. Now, she's planning to be in it for the long haul at Duke, grinding to‑ ward the official start of competition in the fall of 2017. She's recruited a class of 2016 freshmen who will red‑ shirt and play club softball, to be fol‑ lowed by a large freshman class in 2017. "We're creating uniforms, putting together a staff, recruiting, getting our stadium plans finalized," Young said. "Our stadium is being built as we speak. That's a big undertaking.   WHERE ARE THEY NOW? Marissa Young Is The New Boss Blue Devil Young (center), a three-time softball All-American at Michigan, was named the head coach at Duke in July 2015, and the new program will officially begin play in the 2017-18 school year. PHOTO COURTESY DUKE

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