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Longtime Grand Haven basketball coach enters Hall of Honor

Josh VanDyke • Oct 11, 2018 at 12:30 AM

Bob Eidson has epitomized Grand Haven basketball during his 45 years on the sidelines in various roles with the Buccaneers boys and girls programs.

Eidson moved to Grand Haven in the spring of his junior year of high school and has been a Buccaneer ever since. Eidson coached varsity girls basketball for the Buccaneers before taking over as the junior varsity boys coach in 1986, a post he held until 2014, when he stepped in as varsity coach after the death of then-coach Steve Hewitt.

"I got to Grand Haven just in time to play baseball for Steve Sluka, then the following year, I played basketball for Grand Haven and then went on to play at Grand Valley for four years," Eidson said after he announced his retirement in 2017. "After that, I came back here to teach, and I've been here ever since."

For his achievements, longevity and commitment to his craft, Eidson was introduced into the Basketball Coaches Association of Michigan's Hall of Honor last weekend during a special ceremony on the campus of Michigan State University.

"It was a great honor to be a part of such prestigious company," Eidson said of the ceremony. "To be on the same list of people like Dick Vitale, Al Schaffer's brother, Jerry, and many coaches from the area, was a pretty special moment and something I'll never forget.

"It was great to have so much support at the event. Coach Katie (Kowalcyzk-Fulmer) brought some of her staff, my wife (Robin), daughter (Amanda) and a lot of the boys basketball staff was there, too. I talked to (former Grand Haven boys head coach) Craig Taylor on the phone after the event and Coach (Al) Schaffer called and congratulated me, as well.

"I know a lot of people reached out to my wife on Facebook when she reposted a story from BCAM about the award, and the number of comments from people that congratulated me was almost overwhelming. It was pretty special."

Eidson was nominated by current Grand Haven boys head coach Greg Immink three years ago, when Immink took over as the boys varsity basketball coach.

"He just represents Grand Haven basketball and what it stands for," said Immink of Eidson. "He loves being in the gym, getting to know the kids in the program and helping them become better basketball players and better people.

"He's always so positive with the kids and has been open-minded to new ideas by the coaches. He's willing to view things differently, and just having that kind of experience on your staff helps make everyone better."

The strongest supporter for Eidson has been his wife, Robin, who he believes deserves the most credit.

"What I appreciate the most is what my wife, Robin, has allowed me to do," he said. "There's not a lot of women out there that will let you run around and play games all your life. My whole family has really embraced my role in the program. My kids have always been in the gym with me, and I've never taken that for granted.

"When you have support like that, you can last as long as I have."

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