Jim Goorman, 66, who has amassed over 500 victories and won five state championships in his 32 seasons as varsity coach for the Warriors, has been let go from the position according to a release from the school.
“We commend Jim for his very successful coaching career at WMC, but the administration has decided to go in a new direction,” said WMC Athletic Director John Swinburne.
A year ago, Goorman told school officials that after the 2010-2011 season, he would like to coach one more year. After this season, in which WMC struggled to a 5-16 record, Goorman said he would like to coach another year, but his request wasn’t granted.
When reached for comment on Tuesday, WMC school board president Scott Meyers declined to discuss the issue. WMC high school principal Doug Doty also refused to comment on the matter Wednesday morning.
Goorman experienced some controversy at WMC on March 17, 2011, when he was accused of shoving a female student in the back with his foot during gym class after he claimed the student was ignoring him while he was giving the class instruction. Nonaggravated assault charges were dropped and the two parties reached an out-of-court agreement when the Muskegon girl and her family decided they did not want to press charges, according to the police report.
It is unclear if that issue had any factor in Goorman's dismissal.
Goorman began his coaching career at WMC in 1970 at the freshmen level. He also coached the junior varsity nine years before taking over the varsity job from Elmer Walcott at the start of the 1979-80 season.
Goorman’s squads captured state championships in 1992, 1999 and three-straight from 2008-2010. One of his best players from that stretch of success was Evan Bruinsma, who is currently playing at the University of Detroit.
Goorman became the area's winningest coach on Feb. 21, 2009, when he passed legendary Muskegon Heights coach Okie Johnson with his 452nd career victory.
Goorman earned his 500th career victory in March of 2011 when the Warriors defeated Grand Rapids Covenant Christian.
Look for more on WMC parting ways with basketball coach Jim Goorman in Thursday's Grand Haven Tribune.