Cody Hooten is in his 8th year as Henderson State’s baseball coach after serving three years as an assistant for the Reddies.
In his seven years as head coach of the Reddies, Hooten boasts a record of 179-178-1 and is second all-time in school history in wins; just 26 behind Clyde Berry’s 205 career victories.
In 2017, Henderson State went 32-21 and finished as Great American Conference Tournament runners-up for the third consecutive year, while once again hosting the event at Clyde Berry Field in Arkadelphia. Hooten picked up the 150th win of his career early in the season on February 4, when the Reddies defeated Pittsburg State 9-2.
In 2016, the Reddies finished as Great American Conference Tournament runners-up for the second consecutive season with Henderson posting a 31-25 record. Henderson hosted the GAC Tournament for the first time in school history.
The 2015 season will go down as the greatest thus far in HSU history. After battling numerous injuries and recording 17 wins a year earlier, the Reddies recorded a 33-21 record and finished fourth in the Great American Conference after being picked to finish ninth in the preseason coaches poll.
Henderson would advance to the championship game of GAC Tournament. Despite finishing as GAC Tournament runners-up, the Reddies earned an at-large bid to the NCAA Central Regional in St. Cloud, Minn. It was Henderson’s first-ever NCAA postseason appearance in baseball.
The Reddies would stun the number one team in the nation as Henderson beat host St. Cloud State 10-4 in the opening round. Henderson advanced to the championship game and would again meet up with the Huskies. The Reddies rallied from a 7-2 deficit to beat SCSU 8-7 in 10 innings and become the first team from the GAC to advance to the NCAA Division II National Championships.
The Cinderella season continued as Henderson opened the championships with a 4-0 win over Angelo State. After losing to Catawba 5-1 two days later, the Reddies would again meet up with Angelo State and would eliminate the Rams with a 4-1 victory. Henderson State advanced to the semi-finals, losing to eventual national champion Tampa 5-2.
Henderson State recorded 14 wins over nationally-ranked opponents, including five victories over teams ranked in the top 10. The Reddies would finish the year ranked No. 12 in the Collegiate Baseball Poll.
Six Reddies earned All-GAC honors with Nick Vanthillo and Claude Johnson earning first-team honors. Vanthillo would become the first Reddie in school history to earn ABCA First-Team All-American honors, while Jordan Taylor was selected second-team all-region.
In addition to the numerous team accolades, Hooten, who was named the 2015 Natural State Coach of the Year, picked up his 100th win at Henderson on March 28, 2015 when the Reddies beat Southwestern Oklahoma 7-4.
In 2013, Henderson ended the year with a 24-27 record overall and a 17-13 record in the GAC. The Reddies won their first-ever conference tournament game as an NCAA Division II member. Five players earned All-GAC honors, with Jordan Wright, Michael Corso, and Zac Zdanowicz being named to the first-team.
In 2012, Henderson State finished the year with a 23-27 record and an 11-13 record in GAC play. The Reddies advanced to a post-season conference for only the second time since becoming a member of the NCAA in 1993. Five players earned All-GAC honors including Brittain Diamond, Adam Ussery and Josh Salmon earning first-team honors.
Hooten took over as head coach of the Reddies in 2011. In his first season, Henderson State finished the season with a 19-26-1 record overall and a 7-12-1 record in the Gulf South Conference. Two players from that team earned All-GSC honors including Gip Hendrix and Josh Wesson.
In his three seasons as the Reddie assistant coach, Hooten served as hitting instructor and chief recruiter with 21 players earning All-GSC honors. Hooten helped lead the Reddies to their only Gulf South Conference Tournament appearance in 2010.
Prior to coming to Henderson, Hooten was head coach in the Walter Johnson League, a summer collegiate league affiliated with the NBC for four years. Hooten coached the Wichita Rattlers, Butler County Cubs and created, ran and coached the Pratt Drillers. In 2007, Hooten led the Pratt Drillers to the NBC World Series in the first year of the program’s history.
Hooten worked from 2003 to 2004 and from 2006 to 2007 as an assistant coach at Pratt Community College where he worked with pitchers, catchers, infielders, outfielders and hitters.
While at Pratt, Hooten coached 11 players that went on to play professional baseball and was there for the two best seasons in school history. Other coaching stops included assistant coaching jobs at Friends University in 2005 and at Lyon in 2002 while earning his degree in mathematics.
A 1996 graduate of Sulphur Springs High School in Texas, Hooten played one season at North Central Texas College before transferring to Lon Morris College where he was a Second-Team All-Conference first baseman.
The following season, Hooten played at Cameron University in Lawton, Okla. where he was a Second-Team All-Lone Star Conference pick as a catcher. After sitting out the 2000 season, Hooten went to Lyon College. The journeyman played all nine positions in his final game against Central Baptist.
Hooten is married to the former Chanda Brown of Colby, Kansas. They have two sons, Huston Thomas, Hayden Michael and a daughter Emelyn.
Hooten earned his Master’s Degree from Henderson State in Sports Administration in 2011.