PLAINVIEW, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — Wayland Baptist University announced that coach Johnny Cobb is among five Wayland Baptist University alumni scheduled to be inducted on Nov. 4 into the university’s Athletics Hall of Honor.
According to officials, the induction ceremony will take place at 9 a.m. in Banquet Room 211 in McClung University Center. Also on the induction docket are women’s basketball veteran Rosemary Brown Bowser, men’s basketball standout Alexey Carvalho, baseball standout Brett Cook, and golf great Andrew Williamson. The Hall of Honor ceremony is free and open to the public.
Officials stated that Cobb was a year into retirement when Dr. Greg Feris, then-Wayland athletes director, sought his help recruiting a coach. Cobb then came out of retirement to help Wayland lay the groundwork for the first scholarship college wrestling program in Texas and guided it to a highly successful start.
Officials also stated that Cobb’s work at the university included coaching his second Olympic gold medalist.
“In Cobb’s five years as coach, Wayland wrestlers brought home 24 All-American honors, 21 on the women’s side, including the first of two national championships for Tamyra Mensahin 2014,” said WBU officials. “The Pioneer women finished sixth with six All-Americans at the WCWA National Championships in 2012, then two years later, the Wayland women placed fifth with seven All-Americans.”
Cobb said the thing he takes the most pride in from his time at Wayland is not the many on-mat successes his student-athletes achieved but what those athletes have gone on to do after leaving Wayland.
“I’m most proud of the fact that so many are now coaching other kids,” said Cobb. “There are so many who paid it forward and who are trying to implement the same characteristics in their kids. Hopefully, what I tried to do had a ripple effect, and hopefully, that ripple effect helps many other people.”
WBU officials said that Cobb coached Brandon Slay at Tascosa High School before Slay went on to win gold at the 2000 Olympics. Cobb then retired from Wayland in 2014 but stayed close to wrestling. Through Titan Mercury Wrestling Club, he helped coach Mensah, who made history in 2021 by becoming the first black woman to win an Olympic gold medal.
Wbu officials also mentioned that Cobb is a member of the Panhandle Sports Hall of Fame, Texas Wrestling Ring of Honor, and Texas Chapter of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame. Cobb also has an endowed scholarship named in his honor at Wayland, and the university’s most prestigious wrestler award is named for him.