There is no doubt about it: Garth Brooks is a megastar. Even if you don't know country music, you know his name -- and probably at least one of his songs.

What you might not know is that, before Brooks became the face of country music in the 1990s, he was an advertising student at Oklahoma State University. In addition to hitting the books, Brooks was a member of the school's track and field team; in fact, he'd earned a scholarship for his athletic prowess.

Post-graduation, Brooks headed to Nashville for what he expected to be a permanent move, but actually ended up being an about 24-hour trip. Brooks gave it a second go in 1987 -- and, that time, he made it work. Just two years later, Brooks released his debut self-titled album, which would launch his superstar career.

These days, Brooks is still riding high, even after a brief retirement in the 2000s. He is the best-selling artist of time, has seven diamond-certified albums to his name and is a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame. In addition to these accolades, Brooks has also roped in slew of other awards, including numerous Grammys, ACMs and CMAs.

Flip through the photo gallery below to re-live Brooks' career in pictures, from his place in country music's "Class of '89" to today.

How Well Do You REALLY Know Garth Brooks?

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