Bill Taylor enters his tenth year as the Head Men’s and Women’s Cross Country and Track and Field Coach at Lipscomb University. During his time at Lipscomb the program has seen a dramatic rise into the regional and national picture at the NCAA Division I level.
Taylor’s women’s cross country teams have won five consecutive Atlantic Sun Conference Championships (2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015), while the Men’s Cross Country team has won the past three Atlantic Sun Championships (2013, 2014, 2015).
Taylor’s highlights at Lipscomb include:
-ASUN XC Champions:
Women: 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
Men: 2013, 2014, 2015
-Five NCAA Division I All-American honors in track and field
-Madi Talbert, 2016 US Olympic Trials Qualifier, Steeplechase
-NCAA Division I Indoor National Championship qualifiers: Gemikal Prude: High Jump, 2014
-NCAA Division I Outdoor National Championship qualifiers: Madi Talbert: Steeplechase, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016. Gemikal Prude: High Jump, 2014. 2015.
-NCAA Outdoor National Championship Prelim qualifiers: Madi Talbert, Steeplechase 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 & 5000m 2015, Barbara Lee Ball 10,000m 2016. Paige Stoner, Steeplechase 2015 & 5000m 2015, Sally Larson, 5000m 2015 & 10,000m 2016, Karly Hibbard, Javelin 2015, Gemikal Prude, High Jump 2014, 2015, 2016. Wayne Newman, 110m High Hurdles 2015, 2016 & 400m Hurdles 2016, Colin Dempster, 400m 2014, Tucker Peabody, 100m 2014 & 200m 2012, 2014. Kendra Lobley Steeplechase 2012, Dani Walker, 5000m 2012.
-65 ASUN individual champion honors. 372 All-ASUN athlete honors.
-ASUN COY honors for women's XC 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and men's XC 2013, 2014, 2015.
-79 of 92 men's and women's school records have been set.
-USTFCCCA National Academic Honors for all teams every year. Women ranked first in the nation 2015 NCAA Division I Track and Field for team GPA. Men ranked first in the nation 2009.
-Team has conducted seven mission trips in the past six years to LA, Belize, Haiti twice, Jamaica and the Dominican Republic twice.
Outside of the competitive arena and the classroom, Coach Taylor has built a unique culture that emphasizes team environment, total person development and service.
Team environment means that high character is emphasized in recruiting and in being a part of the program. The result has been the strongest team environment in the nation, where the athletes love to be around each other, motivate each other and take care of each other. By having a culture of high character and creating a team family, the Lipscomb athletes have more fun and achieve more in every aspect. The team environment is a large reason for the rapid success the program has achieved, as well as the gigantic PR rates.
A Total Person Development philosophy of coaching emphasizes academic success, spiritual development and personal growth in addition to high athletic success. This means striving to be the best in the world athletically, while keeping athletics in perspective. It also means that Taylor and his staff believe that athletics are a tool for growth, and that their job is to help their athletes grow in every aspect of their lives.
As a service culture, the cross country and track and field teams are active in the community on a regular basis. Every semester the teams organize and conduct at least two Community Service projects. This has taken many forms, ranging from Habitat for Humanity builds, to Special Olympics help, to storm clean-up, to making sandwiches and handing them out to the homeless, to working with an inner-city youth organization and so many more.
The Lipscomb Cross Country and Track & Field teams have also done seven mission trips the past six years, and will continue return to the Dominican Republic again this year.
Prior to Lipscomb, Taylor coached 11 years at the collegiate level, five years at the high school level and two years privately coaching elite runners.
From 1994 to 2004 he created and guided the Northwest University (Kirkland, WA) Cross Country and Track programs to national prominence. In particular, the women's distance program at Northwest rose to an elite level.
His 2002 Women’s team won the NAIA National Cross Country Championship and his 2003 team finished second in the nation. From 2000 to 2003 (his final season at Northwest), his women finished in the top seven nationally every year and added two top ten national finishes in indoor track as well.
From 1999 to 2003 his women's cross country teams boasted a 98 percent winning percentage against all competition and an 84 percent winning percentage against NCAA Division I competition.
Along the way his women picked up four consecutive Cascade Conference Championships and two Regional Championships. His peers honored him with 17 Conference, Regional and National Coach of the Year honors.
He also had an incredible 100% PR rate at Northwest for 5000m. Every athlete that joined the program over the 10 years at Northwest PR’d, and the average PR rate was just about 2-minutes. This type of improvement is rarely seen on such a scale at the collegiate level.
At Lipscomb this trend has continued, with average PR rates for 5000m well over the 2-minute mark.
In total at Northwest, Taylor coached 52 Athletic All-Americans, 31 Academic All-Americans, 201 National Qualifiers and 53 Cascade Conference Champions at Northwest University.
Kristina Proticova won individual National Championships in the Indoor 3000m and the 3000m Steeplechase and set the Slovakian National Record for the steeplechase while at Northwest.
In the Spring of 2012, Taylor and his 2002 Northwest University NAIA Women’s Cross Country National Championship team were inducted into the Northwest University Athletics Hall of Fame.
In 2006-07, Taylor served as an assistant coach with the women's cross country and track programs at Belmont University, helping them regain the Atlantic-Sun Cross Country championship.
A native of the Seattle, Wash., area, Coach Taylor and his family moved to Nashville in 2006. Taylor has a Bachelor's degree from Belmont University, is completing a Master’s degree in Conflict Management from Lipscomb University, and holds USATF Level I and II Coaching certification. When he has time, he enjoys reading, writing, hiking, outdoor sports, marksmanship, fitness, and relieving stress on a set of drums. In the past he served six years as a 19D Cavalry Scout with the Washington Army National Guard, and volunteered for 11 years with Snohomish County Search & Rescue.
Most of all, he enjoys spending time with his family. He and his wife Tabetha have been married for 28 years. They have two daughters, Bella and Ellie and Golden Retriever named Wiley. They reside in Franklin, Tennessee.