Bob Cole’s coaching career spanned over four decades at Meridian High School. Beginning in 1971, Cole first served as the school’s assistant track and field coach. Then in 1984, he was named the girls’ track and field head coach. When the men’s team was added to the program, Cole was named their leader. Over the years the Mustang athletes’ earned several league titles and invitational wins. Under his leadership, 13 Mustang individuals earned All-State honors. Meridian also had two state track and field champions and several state runners-up.
Cole formed a Meridian school district Cross Country Club in 1984. The following year, cross country became a varsity sport and since then the Mustangs have earned several league and county titles. For over 20 years, Cole’s Mustangs have competed at the state finals with several top ten team and individual finishes. Eight individuals earned All-State cross country honors and three individuals were named to First Team All-State.
Cole believed that the sport is all about the kids. His coaching influence is listening, teaching, encouraging, mentoring, and assisting hundreds of young people to reach for and accomplish both individual and collective goals. Countless of his athletes went on to participate at the collegiate level in both track and field and cross country in Divisions I, II, III.