« Softball 2007

Garland Cooper

1st Base
Garland Cooper


Communication studies major with a concentration in sociology and an anticipated graduation date of June, 2007. Plans to pursue a career in sports marketing or sports management; has pursued team leadership and decision making courses to that end. CoSIDA Academic All-America honoree in 2006, Northwestern’s first ever in softball and a Two-time CoSIDA Academic All-District and Academic All-Big Ten honoree.


When Garland—a very highly recruited student-athlete—chose to attend Northwestern, the program was at a low point. She wanted and accepted that challenge, and has had the unique ability to not only raise her stature as a collegiate student-athlete, but also to help grow the NU program all the way from struggling to qualify for the Big Ten Tournament to the runner-up at the Women’s College World Series in 2006. Her work ethic at NU is legendary. She constantly takes extra batting practice, stops by the coaches’ offices to talk about ways to improve herself and the team, and is Northwestern’s top performer in the weight room. When current sophomore Tammy Williams came into the program, Garland took her under her wing. Tammy had a lot of raw talent and took some time to adjust to college, all of which Garland helped to develop. Tammy looks up to Garland so much, and now mimics her in many facets of life – right down to the way each steps into the batter’s box. Tammy currently is having one of the best offensive seasons in the nation (even better than Garland), and the two remain very close friends.


Northwestern holds “Scout Days” during most of its sports’ seasons, and Garland volunteered to speak with the Girl Scouts during this year’s women’s basketball day (which drew 1,000 fans!), among others. She is very active in the youth softball community around Chicago, Garland has volunteered at a number of travel ball/youth clinics during her career at Northwestern. She has participated in Northwestern’s Relay For Life with the American Cancer Society which has been named one of the best collegiate Relay’s in the nation in past years, and it was started and is run primarily by student-athletes. Despite the fact it takes place during the softball postseason, Garland and the team do a lot to raise money and awareness of the event.


Garland is a two-time NFCA All-American, just the second multiple All-American in NU history. She is the two-time defending Big Ten Player of the Year, and is a three-time All-Big Ten selection as well as a three-time Big Ten batting champ. Garland was named to the USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year Watch List for 2007, and earned an invitation to the USA Softball National Team World University Games camp last summer. She already holds eight Northwestern career offensive records, and ranks third in Big Ten history with 43 career home runs. Garland was named to the 2006 Women’s College World Series All-Tournament team and was the fourth-overall draft pick in the National Professional Fastpitch Senior Draft. She ranks sixth all-time in intentional walks in NCAA Division I history, and is on pace to rank among the leaders in several other offensive categories in NCAA Division I history, as well. As a senior, Garland’s teammates are doing a great job of getting on base, and she is driving them in at a record pace.. She is on pace to shatter school records for single-season home runs and RBIs, while the team is on pace to shatter multiple single-season records, including runs scored.