WORCESTER -- Retired WPI wrestling coached Phil Grebinar was inducted into the National Wrestling Coaches Association Division III Hall of Fame Saturday evening. The ceremony took place Fort Lauderdale, Florida as part of the annual NWCA Convention.
Grebinar had an impressive run at the helm of the Engineers' program going 414-161-7 (.717) which currently puts him #24 in all-time dual wins for all divisions and sixth in Division III. His athletes excelled on the mat winning four New England Tournament Championships - 1985, 1987, 1994, and 1995 - while 35 wrestlers captured individual titles and 195 earned All-New England honors. In 1987, WPI wrestlers placed in all 10 weight classes -- a New England Tournament first. Grebinar coached 11 NCAA All-Americans, 19 Scholar All-Americans and was named the New England Coach of the year three times. Not just a coach, Grebinar is slated to begin is 46th season as an NCAA referee this winter.
"I feel honored to be being inducted into the NCAA Division III Wrestling Coaches Hall of Fame", commented Grebinar. "I am sorry I could not be there in person in Florida but other commitments prevented me from attending. However I am grateful that Matt Oney one of my former WPI wrestlers and the present WPI Wrestling coach is able to attend and accept for me."
Over the years, Grebinar has been inducted into four other Halls of Fame. In 1994, Grebinar was inducted into the WPI Hall of Fame while in 1996 he was enshrined into the Massachusetts Wrestling Coaches Association Hall of Fame. In 2002, he was inducted into the inaugural class of the New England College Conference Wrestling Association's Hall of Fame, and in 2003 he was enshrined into the Massachusetts Chapter of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame.
Others in this year's class induction class included two former student-athletes and three coaches. The athletes were John Gemmel (Ithaca) and Tim Jacoutot (TCNJ) while the coaches were Leo Kocher (Chicago), Lonnie Morris (Johnson & Wales), and Donny Wichmann (Augsburg).
"This induction is special to me because I spent my entire college coaching career at the D3 level where we all work with great kids as student-athletes," continued Grebinar. "I am excited to now be in this Hall of Fame with so many coaches and wrestlers that we competed against and I respect so highly. Congrats to tonight's other inductees and especially to Lonnie Morris who I have known a long time during his wrestling career at RIC and now coaching at JWU."