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Former 3-sport athlete from Brookfield follows dad's footsteps, becomes rower for Badgers

"It's very much a sport about the work you put in when no one's watching."
Posted at 6:34 PM, Aug 22, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-22 19:34:16-04

Not everyone wants to follow in their parents' footsteps, but sometimes destiny intervenes and you end up finding out the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

If you ever thought the "Sport Gods" didn't have a sense of humor, think again.

"My dad rowed in college. So I had heard stories from him, but rowing wasn't something that was real until I went to college," says Breck Duncan, former Brookfield Central Lancer now Wisconsin Badger.

A three-sport athlete in high school, Duncan always wanted to be a Badger.

"I was running and wrestling, and Madison is a D1 school. I wasn't quite at the level to do those," says Duncan.

Turns out, he didn't need a spot at Wisconsin as a wrestler or a runner.

"I knew Wisconsin had a really big walk on tradition," says Duncan.

That's when he decided to try the sport his dad was always reminiscing about.

"Not gonna lie, I wasn't that good to start. I don't think anybody really is. It's just about getting the strokes in, and refining it, and keep working on it," says Duncan.

Doing exactly that, Duncan fell in love with rowing. Truth is, he may never stop.

"I think the plan right now is to put real life on hold and go for the rowing thing. I'm going to come out with a great degree in mechanical engineering, but I think the plan is to try and make the national team, try to make worlds, try to make the Olympics," says Breck.

Not surprising, his dad is pretty pumped about it all.

"He is watching every single race. It doesn't matter if it's on the east coast at 4 a.m., he has to watch it. He just loves watching me row," says Duncan.

Entering his final year as a Badger, he has proven that if you have the passion to compete, you'll find your team.

"Believe in yourself and work towards what you want. It's about putting the energy into things that really matter to you," says Duncan. "Rowing isn't a sport that's in the news a lot. You don't really make money from it. There's no highlight reels that anyone's playing. It's very much a sport about the work you put in when no one's watching."

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