Inside College Hockey looks at the game's greatest
five years from now
hockey landscape will look much different five years from now.
No, we’re not talking about robotic linesmen
(although, come to think of it …). Instead, consider the
legendary coaches who probably won’t be behind the bench
at that point – Jack Parker, Red Berenson, and possibly
Jerry York, just to name three.
With that in mind, here’s a look at Inside
College Hockey’s take on who the top 10 coaches will be
as we enter the 2008-09 season.
got to think his string of titles – currently at two –
won’t be intact as we enter 2008-09. But there’s no
way we’d bet against him adding to his trophy case between
now and then. Consider his recruiting class this year, which brings
in two elite forwards to a team that lost nothing up front. The
Gophers will be good as long as Lucia is at the helm.
crafted a winner at Princeton and a top-10 caliber team at Massachusetts.
But will he still be there in five years? Here’s our thinking
– it doesn’t matter if he stays in Amherst or bolts
for Boston University to take over for his former coach, Jack
Parker – either way he’ll be among the very best in
of top offensive talent he’s recruited has worn a path to
Ralph Engelstad Arena. Despite a slight dip in 2001-02, he’s
kept the Fighting Sioux at a nationally competitive level, and
this year’s team could contend for the national title. It’s
only been three years since Blais won his second title in 2000
– we’re betting that he’ll add at least a third
go 23 years without a Frozen Four appearance again. Not with Schafer
behind the bench, a coach who combines great recruiting and an
intense style of play that his players commit to. What the Lynah
Faithful may like best about Schafer is his appreciation of the
school’s history, and his expectation that Cornell should
compete for conference and national titles every year.
the thing about playing in big games – it’s not like
the other team doesn’t belong there either. So while Umile
might move up this list with an NCAA title or two in the next
five years, he doesn’t need one to be regarded as a great
coach. Those who know how good he is will be pulling for him to
get one – as Don Lucia admitted he would have been last
April, if only he wasn’t on the opposing bench.
be fooled by the fact that he doesn’t have a head coaching
job yet – a number of schools would have loved to have hired
Pearson away from Michigan. He’s wisely biding his time
until Red Berenson’s retirement, at which point he’s
the odds-on favorite (think Reagan in ’84) to take over
the Wolverines. He deserves a ton of credit for their success
over the past dozen years.
CCHA title was no fluke – Daniels has been getting the most
out of his Ferris State teams for years. A fantastic measure of
his success is his players’ improvement while in school
– with the recently departed Chris Kunitz and Troy Milam
being perfect examples.
not a head coach yet, Boston College assistant Rolston is constantly
mentioned as a head coaching candidate. When he takes one –
whether it’s at BC, where Jerry York will be 62 in 2008,
or elsewhere – we think he’s destined for success.
He’s got a strong work ethic and a good eye for talent.
Miami is called
the Cradle of Coaches, a moniker is initially earned in football.
With the success of Mazzoleni and another former RedHawk (or Redskin)
coach, George Gwozdecky, the name applies to hockey as well. Mazzoleni
has revived the Harvard program and the best is yet to come, despite
the loss of the team’s best player, Dominic Moore, to graduation.
Not too many
people were sure what to make of last year’s Colorado College
team entering the season – but Owens made them into the
top team over the course of the regular season. He’s a terrific
recruiter, as seen in talent like Brett Sterling and Mark Stuart,
and he learned valuable lessons from the No. 1 man on this list,
former CC coach Don Lucia.