TIFFIN — The mentor is giving way to his protege.
Heidelberg University Athletic Director Matt Palm announced on Monday that Ron Martin is stepping down as head cross country coach and assistant track & field coach, effective at the end of the outdoor season. Brian Grime, a former assistant at Heidelberg, has been named Martin’s successor.
“Ron helped steady our cross country and track program in a time of transition,” said Palm. “I want to thank him for his service to Heidelberg.”
A 1975 Heidelberg graduate, Martin is in his third season at his alma mater. He coached Grime at Tiffin University, then brought him to the Berg as an assistant coach in 2013. Martin’s storied coaching career also included highly successful stints at Caldwell, Tiffin Columbian and Seneca East high schools.
“When Ron told me that he planned to step down, Brian is the first and only name that came to mind,” said Palm. “Brian had an excellent rapport with our student-athletes during his time here and I am confident he will continue to push the program in the right direction — both in competition and in the classroom.”
During the 2013-14 season, Martin and Grime mentored Sophie Goobic as she earned All-American status three times — in cross country, the indoor 5,000m run and the outdoor steeplechase.
“Brian is the right choice for this position because he is an advocate of doing what is right, and not what is easiest,” said Martin, a 1992 inductee to the Heidelberg Athletic Hall of Fame. ” I am excited for Brian and where he will take this program.”
After receiving his master’s degree from Tiffin University in 2015, Grime was hired as head cross country coach at Tabor College in Hillsboro, Kan. He guided the men’s team to a seventh-place finish at the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference meet, well ahead of their 10th-place ranking in preseason polls.
“I am excited to return to Heidelberg where Ron helped me get a start on my coaching career. Heidelberg is a great university and I am blessed to have such a great opportunity,” said Grime, a native of Archbold, Ohio. “I am ready to pick up where Ron left off and continue building what we started before I left.”
The Heidelberg men’s team was fourth and the women’s team was fifth at the 2015 Ohio Athletic Conference cross country championships.