Bob Braman is in the midst of his second decade at Florida State University as the third-longest tenured head coach in Seminole athletics, leading the men’s cross country and both the men’s and women’s indoor and outdoor track & field teams. Since succeeding Hall of Fame track & field coach Terry Long prior to the 2004 season, Braman‘s Noles have become a national brand, highlighted by a pair of men’s NCAA Outdoor Championships in 2006 and 2008.
He begins his 21st season directing the men’s cross country team, and 18th season at the helm of the men’s and women’s track & field programs. Along the way the FSU men have carved out 18 top-10 NCAA Championship finishes – nine each, indoors and outdoors – while the women added their seventh top-10 finish at the 2019 NCAA Outdoor meet.
Meanwhile, the men’s cross country team made their 14th NCAA Championships appearance in the last 17 years last fall.
Simply put, the Seminoles are synonymous with success on the national stage.
Florida State’s trophy case provides substantial evidence. In addition to the two NCAA Championships – among 12 top-four finishing trophies – the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) bestowed the Seminoles with the John McDonnell Award for the 2010-11 and 2011-12 seasons. .
Over the course of his career, the Seminole men have lifted the Atlantic Coast Conference championship trophy 23 times, adding their 12th indoor title in 2020 to go along with 11 outdoor title celebrations. Meanwhile, the women collected their fourth ACC outdoor title in 2019 to go along with three indoor titles.Their resume includes a pair of ACC Triple Crowns, sweeping cross country, indoor and outdoor team titles in 2008-09 and 2013-14.
Beyond the team success, the Noles have amassed 350 All-American honors between the track & field and cross country programs, producing 40 national champions on the track. In 2011, Ngoni Makusha claimed The Bowerman Award, college track & field’s highest honor.
FSU’s excellence has allowed Braman to stockpile a total of 46 national, regional and conference Coach of the Year honors. He has won three consecutive USTFCCCA National Coach of the Year awards (2006-08) for outdoor track & field, 25 ACC Coach of the Year honors and 18 South Region Coach of the Year awards.
The men’s cross country program has advanced to the NCAA Championships 14 times, highlighted by a runner-up finish in 2010 and a fifth-place showing in 2012. Prior to his arrival the Noles had just one NCAA Championship appearance and two All-Americans.
Seven Noles have earned All-American honors under Braman, who also produced the first four All-American women’s honors in FSU’s NCAA era.
Prior to his arrival in 2000, the FSU men’s cross country team had not finished higher than seventh in nine ACC Championship meets. Braman matched that all-time best finish in his first season and hasn’t looked back. The Noles have 15 top-five ACC finishes, highlighted by the program’s first ACC title in 2010 and five runner-up finishes.
FSU has won five NCAA South Region titles.The 2012 title was the first at Apalachee Regional Park, FSU’s home course, which Braman was instrumental in designing and developing in a joint venture with Leon County, the Gulf Winds Track Club and the university. The course will host the 2021 NCAA Outdoor Championships.
In addition to his work with the men, Braman also laid the foundation for the women’s cross country program from 2000-2006, guiding them to the first NCAA Championship appearances (2002, 2003 and 2006) in school history.
Prior to his arrival in Tallahassee, Braman enjoyed 17 years of success at the University of South Florida. He began his career as the men’s cross country assistant in 1983, was promoted to head coach in 1985 and launched the women’s program in 1986. He was named USF’s first track & field coach in 1991.
A Tampa, Fla. native, he graduated from the University of Florida in 1980. A three-year captain of the cross country team, he earned All-SEC honors in cross country (1979-80) and indoor track (1979), while setting the school record in the indoor three-mile run.
He is married to the former Debbie Turner. They have two sons, Steven and Tyler, who are Florida State graduates.