UTA Students Hope to Turn Rubik's Cube Passion into Career

In the time it takes you to read this sentence, UT-Arlington student Anthony Brooks can solve a Rubik's Cube.

During a 2014 competition, he completed the puzzle in 6.4 seconds, a North American record at the time.

"I always pick one up for at least half-an-hour or so a day," said Brooks, a junior at UTA.

He solved his first Rubik's Cube during a long road trip in high school and has been hooked ever since.

"A lot of people think you have some sort of knack for it right away, but that's not the case," said Brooks. "It's a matter of learning a method and practicing."

The better he got, the more his younger brother, Brian Brooks, noticed.

"When I saw Anthony solving it really quick, it made me want to solve it really quick," said Brian Brooks, a freshman at UTA.

He learned from Anthony. Now, the brothers travel the world, participating in speed cubing competitions and captivating people with their unusual skill.

"You can see their eyes light up and they'll just walk away in disbelief," said Brian Brooks. "I've even had people take the cube out of my hands while I'm in the middle of solving it, and they're like, 'Let me scramble this up for you. I don't believe this.'"

But both brothers, who regularly solve Rubik's Cubes in less than 15 seconds, say there's no real way to employ tricks or cheats. According to the makers of Rubik's Cubes, there are more than 43 quintillion ways to scramble a cube.

Anthony Brooks said it's all about strategy.

"It's different every time," he said. "It's not like we're performing the same set of moves to solve it. That doesn't work. But as long as you take the time to analyze it and perform the same logical process, it'll get you to that final solution."

It's a talent the brothers hope they can capitalize on after college.

"We're business students here at UTA," said Brooks. "And it's great to be able to apply what we're learning in the classroom into taking this skill and trying to make it profitable."

But until then, they're perfectly happy living the normal college life – with a twist.

Anthony Brooks recently placed second at the World Championships in Brazil. He also holds records for solving Rubik's Cubes underwater and blindfolded.

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