With all his children in school, the time seemed right for Brian Blume to return to Northridge High School as a head coach.
Blume recently was named coach of the boys basketball team, a position he held for three seasons from 2002-05.
"My wife, Crystal, and I have five kids with four girls (11-year-old Abbie and 9-year-old triplets Madison, Makenzie and Morgan) and a boy (5-year-old Dawson), and family comes first for us," said Blume, who was an assistant with the boys program for seven seasons before becoming head coach in 2002. "Dawson is ready to go to preschool, so we thought this would be a good time to come back."
The Vikings went 42-23 in Blume's three seasons. He then was the Vikings' girls basketball coach for two seasons from 2005-07, going 11-31 overall.
In two seasons with the Licking Valley boys program, his teams went 18-25 from 2008-10.
Blume has been an assistant with the middle school program at Northridge the past two seasons. He said his teams finished 17-2 in 2012-13 and 10-6 last season.
"I coached the eighth-grade team, so I'm familiar with the freshmen and sophomores at the high school," said Blume, who teaches social studies at Northridge Middle School. "They have played for me and know what the expectations are. That should make my transition a little smoother."
Blume replaces Ben Patrick, whose teams went 14-32 in two seasons. Patrick now coaches basketball at Columbus School for Girls.
Last season, the Northridge boys team finished 7-16 overall, losing at Fredericktown 61-53 in the first round of the Division III district tournament.
The Vikings finished eighth (5-13) in the LCL, behind Granville (16-2), Johnstown-Monroe (15-3), Newark Catholic (14-4), Licking Valley (11-7), Licking Heights (9-9), Lakewood (9-9) and Watkins Memorial (8-10) and ahead of Heath (3-15) and Utica (0-18).
"We'll try to push the ball, but if it's not there we will settle into a more disciplined, structured system," Blume said. "Defensively, I'm definitely a man-to-man coach."
The Vikings expect to return their leading scorer in senior guard Chad Campbell, who averaged 12.7 points last season and was honorable mention all-district.
"Coach Blume is a good coach and I like his offense," Campbell said. "We run something like a Princeton (deliberate) offense. Last year, we had trouble getting offensive ball movement, so I look forward to working with this."
Also expected back are seniors David Butt, Bryant Garee, Clayton Nicks, Gavin Shank, Evan Wilkoski, Brad Wilson and Greg Wilson.