Former player Kody Cook returns to the Blue Dragon coaching staff in 2019 as the Receivers Coach and Strength and Conditioning coach.
Cook was hired to serve as the Blue Dragon tight ends coach just before the 2017 season, but left before the 2018 season to become the quarterbacks coach at Mill Valley High School.
Cook was a versatile in-state player who came to Hutchinson from Louisburg, Kansas, before the 2011 season. Cook wound up being a two-year receiver and a punter during his freshman year with the Blue Dragons.
But his career took a most-interesting and unexpected turn in his final game at HutchCC on December 1, 2012.
The program’s career-leading quarterback, Luke Barnes, injured his throwing hand in the first quarter and eventually left the game for good late in the second quarter of Hutchinson’s 2012 Salt City Bowl game against Iowa Central at Gowans Stadium. The coaching staff decided to insert Cook at quarterback. Before that game, Cook, who came to Hutch as a quarterback, completed 1 of 2 passes for seven yards in his Blue Dragon career.
Cook led the Blue Dragons on a seven-play, 59-yard scoring march on his first possession as quarterback, but Iowa Central led 21-14 with 6:56 left to play in the third. At that point, Cook started to solidify his place in Blue Dragon history.
After the Blue Dragons gave up the lead, Cook led Hutchinson on four-consecutive second-half scoring drives en route to a 41-21 come-from-behind victory over the Tritons. Cook was named the Bowl’s Offensive Most Valuable Player after completing 20 of 30 passes for 277 yards and tying a bowl record with five touchdown passes. Cook rushed for another touchdown.
As a receiver for the Blue Dragons, Cook caught 55 passes for 433 yards and three touchdowns in his career. He had at least one reception in 20 of 24 games played for the Blue Dragons. His best game statistically was a seven-catch, 103-yard performance with one touchdown against Independence in 2012.
As a punter in 2011, Cook averaged 40.0 yards per punt on 42 attempts and dropped 17 of his punts (42.5 percent) inside the opponent’s 20-yard line.
Cook moved onto Kansas State University where his Wildcat career mirrored his playing days in Hutchinson.
After redshirting in 2013, Cook started as a Wildcat receiver. In his senior season, he was called into emergency quarterback duty in Kansas State’s game against Oklahoma State.
Cook completed 16 of 22 passes for 122 yards and two touchdowns as the Wildcats nearly rallied to defeat the nationally ranked Cowboys, but came up short, 36-34. Cook had to come in again in the 2015 season finale against West Virginia, with KSU’s bowl eligibility at stake. Cook led another comeback effort, this time culminating in a 24-23 victory over the Mountaineers, which made the Wildcats bowl eligible.
Cook then started the Liberty Bowl against Arkansas where he was 12 of 24 for 163 yards and a touchdown in a 45-23 Razorback victory.
After completing his eligibility, Cook served as a student assistant for legendary coach Bill Snyder. That opened the door for him to do what he had all along planned to do – coach football.