SPACE COAST SPORTS HALL OF FAME: All-American College Baseball Player Bryan Cook Was an Impact Player
By Steve Wilson // July 6, 2021
College Category: Class of 2021 Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame inductee
WATCH: From the time he played baseball in Rockledge Little League, until his All-American career at Nova Southeastern University, Class of 2021 Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame inductee Bryan Cook was an impact player and a special talent.
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – From the time he played baseball in Rockledge Little League, until his All-American career at Nova Southeastern University, Class of 2021 Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame inductee Bryan Cook was an impact player and a special talent.
As a youngster he tried his hand at soccer and football, but he always came back to his first love – baseball. Growing up in Rockledge, most of his friends were baseball players, so it just made sense that baseball was his sport of choice.
Cook smiles when he recalls playing little league games at McClarty Park in Rockledge. Not only the games, but as Cook said the opening days in Rockledge were special and he still keeps in touch with friends he made at an early age.
A left-hander with good size, Cook gravitated to first base and never really left that position. Although he was a good fielder, his real talent was swinging the bat and was a winner at all levels.
His little league years saw him playing on multiple all-star baseball teams and during his senior year at Rockledge High School, he was a member of the Raiders state championship team. As he puts it, in 2004, “we had a lot of talent on that team.”
However, Cook said he will be the first to admit that as a team, they under performed, but to their credit, they hit their stride at the right time, winning the district title and going on to capture it all.
After graduating from high school, Cook attended Santa Fe Community College in Gainesville, Florida. He found college baseball to be a challenge and the summer after his freshman year, Cook said he committed to put in the work to improve his game.
Cook transferred to Nova Southeastern University for his last two years of college baseball and was nearly unstoppable. He finished his career with the Sharks with a .408 batting average, .771 slugging percentage, and was second in career home runs with 30.
He received multiple accolades during his playing career. Among them were being named a 2008 All American, two-time first team Sunshine State Conference player, 2008 SSC Player of the Year and 2008 ABCA/Rawlings South Region Player of the Year.
In 2008, Cook was selected 2008 NSU Scholar Athlete of the Year. He was chosen among all athletes, not just baseball players. Cook beams when he says, “I am very proud of that award.” Academics was always a priority with Cook as he understood that if he didn’t get it done in the classroom, he would not be playing ball. He chuckles when he said, “having bad grades was never an option!”
In 2016, Cook was elected to the Sunshine State Conference Hall of Fame, the first NSU student-athlete to ever be so recognized.
Bryan Cook is a humble young man. When asked what went through his mind when he heard he was selected for induction into the Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame, he said, “I had to pinch myself, it is a great honor.”