All-time hits leader going into Athletic Hall of Honor

PLAINVIEW — The all-time hits leader for the Wayland Pioneers, Brett Cook, will be inducted Nov. 4 into the university’s Athletics Hall of Honor.

Cook will be among five Wayland Baptist University alumni inducted during a ceremony set for 9 a.m. in Banquet Room 211 in McClung University Center on Wayland’s Plainview campus. The ceremony is free and open to the public.

Others to be inducted include women’s basketball standout Rosemary Brown Bowser, men’s basketball phenom Alexey Carvalho, wrestling program shaper and first head coach Johnny Cobb, and golf great Andrew Williamson.

Not only did Cook become an NAIA First Team All-American and set numerous records, including becoming the Pioneers’ all-time hits leader, but he also met his wife, started a family, and launched his coaching career.

A native of Kearny, Ariz., Cook spent two years of mostly struggling at Lamar Community College in Colorado before transferring to Wayland in 2007, igniting a 16-year – and counting – relationship. From 2008 to 2010, Cook turned in three of the most productive years for a Pioneer baseball player. He led the team in hitting every year and played every game – 167 total – in which he was eligible. As a sophomore playing third base, Cook hit .420 before making the move to second base.

Cook’s junior year saw the 6-foot, 190-pound lefty bat .384 and hit a career-best and then team-record 20 home runs. He hit 14 more homers his senior year to set the career record with 41, which today stands sixth in program history.

Cook, who hit a career-high .473 as a senior, held eight Pioneer batting records at the end of his career, graduating as the Pioneers’ career leader in runs scored (209), hits (269) and doubles (50). He’s since been surpassed but ranks in the top six in all those categories, as well as slugging percentage (.731) and at-bats (632). The career record Cook continues to hold is for batting average at .426, and he still owns single-season marks for most runs (88) and most hits (107).

Not only did Cook enjoy tremendous success, so did his teams. During his junior season in 2008, the Pioneers posted a then-record 43 wins and ended with a program-high No. 13 NAIA ranking. Cook’s senior campaign brought about 43 more wins, a No. 18 ranking, and Wayland’s first trip to the NAIA National Tournament. In the opening round in Lubbock, the Pioneers faced off against top-ranked Lubbock Christian. The Pioneers – in addition to beating Northwood and William Jewel (Mo.) – split against LCU to force a final game to determine who advanced to the NAIA World Series. The Chaps won, 15-6. Cook, who mostly batted lead-off, was named All-Sooner Athletic Conference, All-SAC Gold Glove and NAIA First-Team All-American.

Cook went on to serve as Wayland’s graduate assistant coach for two years, then assistant coach, before being promoted to associate head coach in 2022. He and wife Brandi have two children: Bennette, 7, and Bowen, 4.