After a 47-year coaching career, Norm Persin is stepping down and calling it quits.

Persin resigned as the head coach at Lucasville Valley after spending just one season at the school. He led the Indians to a 12-10 overall record and a District runner-up finish in Division IV.

In a text message reply to The Portsmouth Daily Times, Persin said he was totally comfortable with his decision. He also said the stress caused him health concerns last season, and after talking to numerous people he highly respects, he is ready to take their advice.

“They said step away and enjoy my free time and my grandkids before it’s too late,” Persin told the Daily Times.

Persin, who will be 71 in September, said the daily commute from his home near Gallipolis also factored into his decision. That, along with a few of his players transferring from Valley to other area schools for football, also helped seal the deal.

When he was hired at Oak Hill in 2006, Persin stated the commute along State Route 93 to Chesapeake for 21 years had taken its toll on him.

“After 21 years, I got a little tired of making the trip down State Route 93 to Chesapeake. Then Jimmy Slone and Michael Hale called. Their kids were coming up in the program and wanted me to return to coach at Oak Hill,” Persin said in an interview with The Telegram in May 2020. “It made an easy drive for me, but at that time, I had no interest. I loved Chesapeake.

“But the more I thought about it, it just made more sense, and I knew it would make it easier for me.”

Although the Oaks was a struggling program when he arrived, Persin quickly turned things around, leading Oak Hill to a state championship in Division IV in 2009.

He also led the Oaks to four outright SOC Division II championships in 2009, 2010, 2017, and 2018.

His Oaks advanced to the district championship game six times, in 2007, 2008, 2009, 2013, 2017, and 2018, including five trips to the regional tournament with two runner-up finishes in addition to the state title in 2009.

“When I arrived here (Oak Hill) from Chesapeake, we weren’t very good. Then things fell into place. We got a couple of transfers from Jackson, and as soon as we won the state tournament in 2009, I really thought I was done coaching,” said Persin. “Then I decided I would take it one year at a time, and I just kept enjoying it.

“I just really enjoy coaching.”

Persin spent his first six years as the head coach at Oak Hill before leaving to coach at Wilmington High School for two seasons.

He ultimately ended up a Chesapeake, where he guided the Panthers to 16 Ohio Valley Conference titles during his 21 seasons at the school, which named the court there “Norm Persin Court” in 2005.

During his tenure at Chesapeake, Persin was named Coach of the Year in Ohio seven times. He won two Associated Press poll championships in Division III.

When he officially announced his retirement after 14 seasons at Oak Hill in January 2020, he said the 2019-2020 season would be his last before being approached by officials at Valley.

“I was dead set on retirement,” Persin said during the May 2020 interview. “I just wanted to be able to do the things I haven’t been able to do because of my responsibilities as a teacher, athletic director, and coach. “After teaching and serving as the athletic director all those years, I just felt it was time.

“Then, Valley approached me, and I had no interest in taking the job. In fact, I didn’t even know it was open. They were persistent and offered me just a coaching position. I don’t have to teach, and I don’t have to be the athletic director. I can do all the things I want to do with my free time.”

All he had to do was coach.

Persin has been inducted into six Hall of Fames, including two Ohio Basketball Hall of Fames – the Ohio High School Basketball Coaches Association in 2015 – and the Ohio Basketball Hall of Fame in 2016.

He is also in the Ohio Athletic Directors Hall of Fame to go along with being inducted into the Warren Harding High School of Hall of Fame, the Chesapeake Hall of Fame, and the Warren Ohio Distinguished Hall of Fame.

Persin wraps up his illustrious career third all-time in wins in Ohio with a record of 778-224.

He trails only Richard Kortokrax, who finished with 890 career wins, and Joe Petrocelli, who has 831 victories.

Persin's Oaks defeated Kortokrax and Kalida, 48-43, in the state championship game in 2009.

So, what's next for Persin?

He said he plans to relax, watch his grandkids play baseball, and play golf.

As for coaching again, Persin believes he is done for good this time.

“I have had a long and successful career, and I have no intention of coaching again,” Persin told The Daily Times.

Persin wished the athletes a Valley much success and said he would be rooting for them.