Toews. Parise. Oshie. Schmaltz. Boeser. Pinto. Bernard-Docker. Kawaguchi. They’ve all been coached by Brad Berry at the University of North Dakota, where they take great pride in player development.
Clearly they’re on to something.
Berry, who played at North Dakota for three seasons from 1983 to 1986 before a successful NHL career, has been with North Dakota for 16 of the past 22 seasons; he was assistant coach from 2000 to 2006 before coaching stints in the AHL & NHL, prior to returning to his alma mater. After three more years as an assistant, Berry was named head coach in 2014-15.
Over the past seven seasons, Berry has guided UND to a 162-77-25-1 record, with three NCAA Tournament appearances and a National Championship in 2016. Berry was awarded the Spencer Penrose Award as Division I Men’s Coach of the Year in 2020 and has clearly mastered the art of bringing a team together. That doesn’t mean he doesn’t make time for skill development, however.
As he explained in this 34-minute presentation from our College Hockey Inc. Virtual Coaching Clinic, skill development remains a foundational piece to his program and he weaves it into all of his practices.
“First and foremost, it’s about repetition and getting touches with the puck,” explains Berry. “There’s so many times when players get consumed with the number of games they play in, but when you really peel that back and drill down, in the games played, how many times did you touch the puck and for how long? We get in front of that and make sure when players get in to certain situations, they’re comfortable with the puck.”
How good is this talk? Just ask Toews, Parise, Oshie, Schmaltz, Boeser, Pinto, Bernard-Docker, or Kawaguchi. They can attest to Berry’s skill development being top class.
This video is available exclusively to members of The Coaches Site.
- See also:
We are sorry this post was not useful for you...
Tell us how we can improve this post?