When Sean Grinch says he's grown up around the Shadyside wrestling program, he's not kidding.
Grinch joined his father, John, at practice many days as a youngster and then dawned the Tigers' singlet for four years and returned to his alma mater to coach after earning his degree at Capital University.
The 29-year old Grinch will return to the Tigers' wrestling room this winter in a capacity he's never experienced before.
Earlier this month, Grinch was tabbed as the new Shadyside wrestling coach, taking over for the highly successful Scott Kinemond, who stepped down.
"I am very excited for this opportunity," Grinch said. "I am really looking forward to it. Shadyside has great wrestling tradition, great followings at tournaments and the administration is very supportive of the program. It's just a great fit."
Before he could formally apply for the job, Grinch had a few hoops to get through. He's currently a teacher and coach at Indian Creek, so he needed the blessing of the Redskins' administration before pursuing the position.
"They were supportive," Grinch said. "The first person I talked to was Mr. (John) Rocchi and he's a former wrestling coach himself, so he gave me the OK. My principal and A.D. (at Creek) were all supportive, too."
Grinch has already given thoughts to practice and the schedule works out well for him. He finishes his day at Indian Creek at approximately 2 p.m. and the 40 minute drive down to Shadyside should allow practice to begin at 3 p.m.
Counting his years as a junior high coach, Grinch has been a member of wrestling staff for 11 years. He's been a football coach for 10 seasons, including currently serving as the Indian Creek defensive coordinator.
"I wanted to be a head coach," Grinch confessed. "The opportunity to be a head coach at my alma mater was just too good of an opportunity not to pursue. I wouldn't have taken a job some place just to take it. Shadyside's a great program, something that doesn't need re-built and we can just go in and get after it."
Though the Tigers lost undefeated state champion Alex Quinn along with OVAC champions and all-Ohioans Ian Baker and Chase Kinemond to graduation, the cupboard isn't bare.
"Those three guys in the middle (of the lineup) are a big loss, but we've got some talented younger kids," Grinch said. "We're hoping to plug some guys in and pick up right where we left off. I'm excited because I think we'll have a very solid lineup."
Grinch has chosen three former Tiger mat standouts to join him on the coaching staff. Those include Kurt Glasser, Jesse Irwin and Luke Burkhardt.
Grinch graduated from Shadyside in 2002. He was a standout wrestler and football player. He earned a degree in education and is currently pursuing his master's degree through the University of Nebraska-Kearney.
He's currently a special education teacher at Indian Creek.
Grinch has worked with the Redskins' mat program since 2007-08 and was named OVAC Assistant Wrestling Coach of the Year in 2011.