Dave Greenberg's 22-year association with Mount Hebron ended yesterday. That's when the girls basketball coach got word that his transfer to Centennial had been approved.
Greenberg, a guidance counselor, called the switch a difficult decision, one that he struggled with until three weekends ago.
"I became uncomfortable with the changing atmosphere at Mount Hebron and thought a change would be in everyone's best interest," Greenberg said. "This was not a basketball decision. It has nothing to do with basketball."
Greenberg, who will coach the girls varsity basketball team at Centennial, declined to be more specific about the reason behind his move.
Greenberg will rejoin former Mount Hebron principal Ed Markley, who went to Centennial at the start of the 1993-94 school year.
"Our job is to provide the best possible service to our students, and in getting Dave Greenberg as a guidance counselor and basketball coach we're doing that," Markley said. "His reputation speaks for itself. I'm sure our program will benefit."
Markley said that Tony Miceli, who coached Centennial's girls team last season to a 2-20 record, has been asked to assist Greenberg.
Kathy Siltanen, president of the Viking Backers, said: "Everyone will be upset but will wish him well. Mount Hebron has always been his first loyalty, and he seems to take a personal interest in every kid whether or not they play sports."
In 16 seasons as Mount Hebron's girls basketball coach, Greenberg's teams won six state titles and 13 county DTC championships, a record unsurpassed by any other Howard County basketball coach, boys or girls. His overall record is 323-68.
Before last season, 21 former players had been offered scholarship money totaling more than $500,000. Ten graduates were captains on their college teams, and one former player, Amy Mallon, played professionally last season in Luxembourg.
"He's done a great job of getting girls into schools," Mallon said. "This will be a negative for Mount Hebron's girls program but good for him. To me the whole program was him."
Kristen Lloyd, who graduated this year and has a scholarship package to Bucknell that includes a basketball grant, said, "I don't think I'd have had the opportunities I did with colleges if he wasn't pushing for me. He spends so much time making calls, writing letters and getting players into camps."
Viking boys coach Scott Robinson said: "He's a legend. It's a tremendous loss for the school and community."
Greenberg's main regret is that his last three teams came up short of a state title. "But I'm looking forward to starting over from scratch," he said.