Altus’ own Brian Whitlock has a new, old job. Whitlock will add the responsibility of head track and field coach to his cross country duties at Wayland Baptist University.
Whitlock is bittersweet in this role since it comes as a result of having to replace a very close friend, Rohan Thompson, who has resigned his position. This is a familiar position for Whitlock who won five national championships in four years during his previous stint at the helm of the track and field program.
Whitlock, 37, has been at Wayland Baptist since 2004. He was cross country head coach and assistant track and field coach. In 2006, he took over both programs for the next four years. During that time the Pioneer programs won five NAIA National Championships, including back to back women’s indoor and outdoor titles in ‘08 and ‘09. The men’s team won an outdoor championship in 2010.
Whitlock was a Bulldog 1996 graduate and moved on to Oklahoma Baptist University where he won the Sooner Athletic Conference cross country championship and earned All-American honors.
He has turned the Wayland Baptist cross country program from an after thought into a national contender producing a team runner up in 2010 and three individual national champions.
In the last 12 National Championships, the Wayland Baptist programs have finished as a trophy team (top 4) each year. Therefore, Whitlock is expecting their run of success to continue and knows that success breeds higher expectations. However, with a strong recruiting class that former coach Thompson recruited and has encouraged to remain with their commitment to Wayland Baptist as well as a great bunch of kids returning, Whitlock is confident they will be ready to compete for championships.
As a Bulldog, one could say Brian had some success. That statement comes with a smirk of sarcasm. All Whitlock did as a Bulldog was All-State multiple times in both track and field as well as cross country All-State twice. He was three-time state champion his senior year.
However, to put his character in perspective, getting that information out of him was tough. He was more interested in reminding me that he was just a part of some pretty impressive Bulldogs’ track teams in 1995 and 1996. “Those were the glory years for me,” said Whitlock. “We won back to back team State Championships.”
Brian and his wife, Mandy, live in Lubbock with four little ones: Madilyn 10, Jacob 9, Londyn 2 and Brayden 3 months.
Reach Brad Gilbert@482-1221 ext. 2076