Craig Poole Staff Bio | Women's Track Head Coach | The Official Site of BYU Athletics

Craig Poole Staff Bio | Women's Track Head Coach

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Craig Poole

Since he took the helm of BYU womens track team in 1980, Coach Poole has built a program that is consistently among the best in the nation.

Under his guidance, the Cougar track team has recorded an almost perfect record on conference and regional levels and has consistently been national contenders. Since 1983, his teams have won all eight HCAC crowns, seventeen of eighteen WAC titles, nine of ten MWC indoor titles and seven of eight MWC outdoor titles since the inception of the conference in 1999.

Awarded the 2006 Cougar Club Dale Rex Memorial Award for his success as a coach, Craig Poole has coached six individual National Champions: Christy Opara in the Long Jump, Anu Kalijurand in the Heptathlon, Tiffany Lott-Hogan in the Heptathlon, Anna Mosdell in the Discus, Amy Menlove in the Pentathlon and Lacey Cramer in the 800-meters. During his 30 years at BYU he has coached 81 athletes to All-American status.

Pooles athletes have earned a total of 165 All-American honors and 18 of his athletes have been named National Champions.
Poole has been honored as the MWC Coach of the Year seven times, including the 2009 season, and WAC Coach of the Year 10 times. He also received HCAC Coach of the Year and IAC Coach of the Year awards.

In 2004, Coach Poole was the head coach for the United States at the World University Games in Beijing, China. He also served as coach and advisor to the Taiwan National team at the Asian & World Championships in 1987 and technical coach for Taiwan at the Asian games in 1991. He served on the coaching staff for the West Team at the 1989 Olympic Festival and as head coach for the U.S. National Team vs. Great Britain in 1990 and for IAAF U.S. World Indoor Championships Team in 1993.

He was named to the 2004 Olympic coaching staff, traveling to the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, Greece. He coached the U.S. athletes in the Heptathlon, Long Jump and Triple Jump.

Poole is a respected force in USA Track and Field where he is the National Development Chair, a position he has filled for over ten years. He now has an additional role as the Multi Events Chair, responsible for the national development of the long jump, triple jump, high jump, pole vault and heptathlon. He was a member of the NCAA Rules Committee.

In 1993, he was the head womens USA Coach at the World Championships in Toronto, Canada.
Poole received an Ed.D. in physical education and educational administration from the University of Utah in 1970. He is a full-time professor at BYU in sports psychology. He is married to Sharon Woodland. The couple has four children.


  • 30th season at BYU
  • Women have won 17 of 19 indoor and 26 of 28 outdoor conference championships under Coach Poole
  • Named MWC Coach of the Year seven times
  • Coached more than 160 All-Americans
  • U.S. head coach at World University Games and World Championships
  • U.S. Olympic Coach at Athens, Greece
  • Coached six Olympians