Joe Castiglione, Oklahoma Director of Athletics
"We're excited to welcome Jim VanHootegem as our Head Coach for Men's & Women's Track & Field and Cross Country. Jim has worked for and been mentored by some of the finest coaches in the history of intercollegiate track and field and has built his own distinguished pedigree as a coach. As we moved through the search process it was evident that Jim's approach has always modeled the comparable core values and team concepts that guide our athletics programs here at OU. He is committed to doing everything in his ability to provide our student-athletes with the very best experience possible, with a philosophy that prioritizes attaining a high level of academic achievement and competing for championships. In addition to his impressive record of producing individual All-Americans, Jim has been part of 12 squads that have won NCAA team titles and 27 conference championships. His national recruiting expertise and success combined with his familiarity with the Big 12 Conference also makes him an excellent fit for the Sooners. We enthusiastically welcome Jim, Carmen and their family to the University of Oklahoma."
Al Carius, North Central College (Ill.) Head Cross Country Coach/Former Head Track & Field Coach
"Jim VanHootegem is just at the top of the list in every way, shape and form to be an incredible head coach. You will be so happy to be associated with him at the University of Oklahoma. He relates well to people. He's honest, he's got integrity, he's a recruiter, he's knowledgeable and he's got work ethic. He is just committed to everything that he does. I can't say enough positive things about him. He will be fabulous and you just can't find a better candidate than him."
Pat Henry, Texas A&M Head Track & Field Coach
"I think Oklahoma made a wise decision by hiring Jim. Jim is a good man. He is organized and knows what it takes to build a team. He will surround himself with people who can build an excellent program at Oklahoma and embrace those already associated with the program. When I came to Texas A&M from LSU nine years ago, Jim was one of the first guys I hired. He is an excellent coach and has been an integral part of developing our program at Texas A&M. He's a good friend and will be missed greatly."
John McDonnell, Former Arkansas Head Track & Field Coach
"Jim started out with me at Arkansas as a great assistant coach. Oklahoma picked an outstanding citizen as well as a great coach. He learned under one of the great field coaches in NCAA history and has a terrific background in that area."