Christoffer Bring traded bundles of layers on a typical day of golf in Denmark for pure sweat in the blistering Texas heat. His attire changed when he came to UT, and so did his life.
At 15, Bring dreamed of playing collegiate golf in the U.S. When American scouts wandered around European golf tournaments, he conversed with American universities about playing for their teams, but it wasn’t until right before he visited schools that Texas entered the picture.
“It’s a funny story of how I got to Texas,” Bring said. “I talked last minute with UT before visits. The first school I visited was Texas and it felt like home when I got here.”
Apart from the Southern hospitality, part of what makes Texas feel like home is the brotherhood, which helped ease Bring’s homesickness. The senior’s growing pains were immense when he first came to Texas, as his family remained in Denmark.
A majority of the men’s team grew up playing together in junior tournaments around Texas, making the program one already filled with friendships. When Bring arrived four years ago, he joined a close-knit group of brothers.
Even 5,000 miles away, he never forgot about his older brother, Frederik. Frederik, who resides in Copenhagen, Denmark, sees Christoffer two times during the year and has traveled to Austin twice over the course of four years.
When Christoffer is home for the summer and winter holidays, he golfs on the Denmark greens with Frederik caddying right beside him. The familial aspect on the UT golf team means a lot to the Bring family.
“It was really nice for us as a family to see how well the coaches and his teammates were taking him under their wing,” Frederik said. “The juniors and seniors when he joined had a special impact, he still looks up to them.”
Now that Christoffer has become an honorary Texan, he tries to get freshmen involved with the team from the moment their feet hit the Forty Acres. When the 14 players on the roster are not on the greens, they are in the clubhouse spending time together or watching football and other American sports once foreign to Bring. Time in the clubhouse helps Christoffer feel not so far from home.
“I don’t have my family here obviously, and it means a lot that I can talk to the guys,” Christoffer said.
Christoffer’s stateside father figures are coaches John Fields, Jean-Paul Hebert and Richie Coughlan. The three coaches act not just as authoritative figures with golf directive, but as mentors, leaders and fountains of wisdom.
“The coaches are a big part of why we’re so close,” Christoffer said. “We’re pretty much a family, especially for me when I don’t have my parents here, I can always go talk to them.”
A young Christoffer never envisioned becoming a golfer in the U.S. Now, he not only has a new identity as an American collegiate golfer, but he’s also a member of the Texas family.
As the senior wraps up his collegiate career in the spring and says goodbye to Texas, his aspirations lay in the European and PGA Tours, where he looks to the coaches for direction on going pro.
“Right now, I’m not really sure how it’s going to be,” Christoffer said. “I miss Denmark and Europe a little bit and want to go back and see what happens. I’ve always wanted to be in the top-10 of the world, so hopefully that’s the ultimate goal, to take it step by step.”