At a track meet in the seventh grade, Brock Hottel watched fellow competitors his age attempt pole vault, an event where an individual launches oneself into the air with a pole to try and clear a certain height. After watching the event, Hottel went over to his dad and said, “I want to do that.”
From that moment, Terry Hottel – who pole vaulted at Oklahoma in college – would become his son’s coach for the next six years and watch him exceed expectations in his first collegiate indoor season.
On Jan. 12 in Manhattan, Kansas, Hottel set the North Texas school record in the pole vault after clearing 5.20 meters (17 feet) in his first ever collegiate meet. Hottel went on to win the pole vaulting contest that weekend.