After 30 years and 200-plus wins, Ed Greenman is stepping down as the head varsity football coach at Harper Creek.
Longtime Harper Creek head coach Ed Greenman will lead his team into the second round of the playoffs where the Beavers will host Plainwell tonight. The Enquirer Harper Creek head football coach Ed Greenman talks with players Monday morning on the first day of practice. John Grap/The Enquirer Harper Creek head football coach Ed Greenman talks with players Monday morning on the first day of practice.
“It’s been 30 years, it’s been the best 30 years a person could imagine,” Greenman said. “Honestly I felt like I have had the best high school coaching job a person could have. But it’s just time.”
After getting his first head coaching job at the high school level in 1985 at Harper Creek, Greenman turned the Beavers into a perennial power during his long run at the school.
He says he pondered stepping down throughout the season and knew this was the right time to make a change.
“I started thinking about it during the season. And the feeling kind of grew as the season went on. Then, at some point, I just knew. When you know, you know. Even though you love what you are doing, something inside me said it’s time.”
Greenman is also the athletic director at Harper Creek and will continue in that role and will have a say in who the next coach of the Beavers will be. However he says he hasn’t started thinking about that yet.
“This right here is enough to think about right now. Being the coach at Harper Creek has been a great experience and I am leaving this job with fond memories. And now it’s time to find somebody new to pass the torch to and let them experience the best coaching job a person could have,” Greenman said.
Greenman finishes with a 203-108 record for his career. Greenman has had his teams in the playoff 17 times, winning five district championships and four regional titles. During this era, Harper Creek has also won 11 conference championships and he had six perfect 9-0 seasons.
All of that after a slow start, going winless his first two seasons after being hired by then-athletic director Ralph Kenyon.
“I want to thank Ralph Kenyon for hiring me and believing in me. To think I would still be here 30 years later, probably wasn’t thinking that back then,” Greenman said.
Greenman points he will miss not being on the field with his players and assistant coaches in the coming seasons.
“I’ve been blessed with so many great assistant coaches and one of the best parts of coaching is the camaraderie you have with your staff. I have had very good and loyal coaches to work with at Harper Creek and I know I will miss that.
“The thing I will miss the most will be the kids. It’s so neat to be a part of a kid’s life. The good Lord blessed us with our son Kevin, but I also have had a family at Harper Creek and it was really hard to meet with those kids today and let them know I was done.”
The 200-plus wins puts Greenman in exclusive company in terms of success in football in this area. According to the MHSAA record book, no Battle Creek city coach has had more than 200 career wins and only former Marshall coach Rich Hulkow (213 wins), former Union City coach Eric Tundevold (237) and former Galesburg-Augusta coach Bill Maskill (273) have had more career wins from the Battle Creek area.
“There’s no big secret or anything. My health is good, my wife’s health is good. No reason for stepping down other than it is time to pass the torch to somebody else,” Greenman said.