Since arriving in New Haven in 1983 David Talbott has preserved Yale squash's status as one of the most respected programs in the country. Only the third coach in the last 66 years, Talbott has led the Bulldogs to the top of the national rankings, finishing no lower than third in the country from 1989 through 1994. The Bulldogs won the national championship in 1989 and 1990 and have claimed six Ivy League Championships under Talbott's charge. Most recently, he led the Yale women's squash team to an undefeated season in 2011, winning the national championship and the Ivy League Championship. The men's team won the 2011 Ivy League Championship, and in 2016 won the Ivy League and national championships.
Talbott, a native of Dayton, Ohio, had a distinguished playing career as a professional, obtaining a ranking as high as 12th in North America. He won the 1989 and 1990 World Professional Squash Association Legends Championship (35 and over), beating three of the famed Khan brothers on the way to the title. Yet despite his success, Talbott cannot even claim to be the most accomplished player in his family. His younger brother, Mark, was the top-ranked player on the North American professional tour for 15 years. Mark, who was the Yale women's squash coach for six seasons, won 160 professional titles for the Talbott family. Since 2004, he has served as Director of the Stanford Squash Program and Head Coach of the Stanford Men's and Women's teams.
Dave's father, Dr. G. Douglas Talbott, Yale Class of 1946W was formerly ranked No. 1 in the United States in the 70 and over age group. While at Yale, he swam for legendary men's swimming coach Robert J.H. Kiphuth. One generation earlier, Coach Talbott's grandfather Nelson S. Talbott '14 served as captain of the 1914 Yale football team and was a two-time All-American. Finally, the coach's cousin N.S. Talbott III '68 also attended Yale and was the United States Deputy Secretary of State from 1994 to 2001. He currently heads the Brookings Institution, a public policy think tank.
Talbott has served squash in many capacities beyond his playing and coaching. He has held positions as secretary and pro tour coordinator for the World Professional Squash Association. In addition, Talbott has served numerous times as director of the Intercollegiate Team Championships and helped host many junior and senior national championships. In 2002-03 Yale hosted both the USSRA Junior Olympics and the women's national championship. The following year, under Coach Talbott's direction, Yale hosted the collegiate team championship, as well as the USSRA 5-man team championship. Yale most recently hosted the CSA Men's and Women's Team Championships in 2016, with the men's team winning on Yale's home floor.