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The Master's College fires hoops coach Chuck Martin

Posted: March 13, 2014 10:20 a.m.
Updated: March 13, 2014 10:20 a.m.

Chuck Martin went 131-118 in eight seasons as the head coach of The Master's College men's basketball.

 

The Master’s College and Chuck Martin both believed that the men’s basketball head coaching job was a balancing act.

After eight seasons, the school decided that Martin didn’t balance it to the degree it hoped.

TMC announced on Thursday that it had dismissed the men’s basketball head coach of eight seasons.

Martin’s Mustangs went 19-12 this past season and finished on Saturday with a 61-56 loss to Hope International in the GSAC Tournament semifinal.

“It’s not about wins and losses, but we do want to jumpstart a new culture in men’s basketball, and that did require a change in leadership,” said TMC Athletic Director Steve Waldeck. “No one outworks Chuck. It wasn’t an issue of work ethic or anything. We just needed a change.”

In terms of culture, Waldeck said the school needed a coach who could better balance the school’s core concepts of “continuing the tradition of quality athletics in the context of helping athletes to excel academically and as followers of Jesus Christ.”

Martin amassed a win-loss record of 131-118 (62-84 in the highly competitive Golden State Athletic Conference).

He said his biggest regret is never getting to the NAIA Division I Tournament.

Martin indicated in the past that he’s found difficulty in bringing in players who could help the program succeed on the court while keeping in balance with the school’s stringent Christian standards.

“Every decision I made the last eight years was in trying to build a program the school would be proud of,” Martin said Thursday. “The pool of kids we could recruit to be competitive was relatively small, so yeah, we were always balancing that, trying to find kids good enough to win games. Make no mistake, winning is important here, but still getting kids here, where they could fit, you could retain them and thrive in this environment (was difficult).”

Martin added: “Make no mistake about it, I believe in what the school stands for, but it’s a tremendous challenge to compete in a league, we compete in the highest level in Division I, and recruiting the kind of kids who will thriveat The Master’s College, clearly someone thinks that can be done better than what we’ve done.”

Waldeck said Martin worked very diligently with the resources he had, and Martin thanked the school for the opportunity.

He said he wants to continue coaching at a high level and looks back at this season as a successful one.

The Mustangs upset national No. 15 Arizona Christian in double-overtime to reach the GSAC Tournament semifinal.

That game, last Saturday, was Martin’s last — a 61-56 loss to Hope International.

TMC loses only one senior to graduation this year.

Waldeck said he’ll meet with the team on Monday, but he hasn’t been told if any player wants to leave the school because of the coaching change.

The coaching search hasn’t begun yet, but the school has in mind the kind of coach it wants for the future.

“I think it’s really important for our next head coach to fully understand that, and this is true at any sport, it’s not just about Xs and Os and wins and losses,” Waldeck said. “This is a unique job in the fact that we are really asking for a full-time expert coach and a full-time expert mentor. ... It would be for any coach (at the school) to understand the unique challenge when talking about a 1,000-student (school) that’s mission-minded. It can be a great place to be, but requires a lot of extra effort, someone that understands the institution.”

 

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