A week before Dave Hakstol coaches the Seattle Kraken in their first ever NHL regular season game, he’ll be sharing hockey insights with you. Yes, you.
The College Hockey Inc. Virtual Coaching Clinic is a five-day event running from October 4-8. Similar to the Virtual Hockey Summit that ran mid-September on The Coaches Site, the Virtual Coaches Clinic will feature technical presentations, interviews and panel discussions leading up to the start of the men’s and women’s college hockey season. The event, presented by InStat, will bring together speakers from some of the most prestigious programs in all of college hockey, including 15 past and present NCAA Division 1 coaches, like Hakstol, former head coach at the University of North Dakota.
Here’s a rundown of five speakers we’re truly excited to have participating in the event.
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Hakstol, an Alberta-product who previously coached the Philadelphia Flyers from 2015-2019 and was an assistant with the Toronto Maple Leafs prior to joining the Kraken this past June, had a wildly successful coaching career with UND and was viewed as one of the most accomplished and well-respected bench bosses in NCAA hockey. Hakstol coached UND for 11 seasons (and was an associate for four seasons prior) taking the Fighting Hawks to the NCAA Frozen Four seven times, finishing with a 289-143-43 record. The 53-year-old captained UND for two of his three seasons as a player from 1989-1992.
What made Hakstol such a successful coach? He believed North Dakota hockey could help players for two main reasons, according to his old Fighting Hawks bio:
“You can get and complete a great education and while you’re doing that, it’s two simple things for us: No. 1, you’ll be part of winning, learning the importance and difficulties of being successful. That’s where the history of our program plays such a huge role. And No. 2, we want to help players into the NHL, but at the end of the day, not everybody will, which is why No. 1 is so important.”
Following seven seasons as an assistant coach in the NHL with Anaheim and Ottawa, Greg Carvel spent five years at St. Lawrence University from 2011-16, also his alma mater, where he played from 1989 to 1993. In his third season with the Saints, Carvel was named the 2014-15 Tim Taylor Award winner as ECAC Coach of the Year.
Carvel is now in his sixth season as head coach of the University of Massachusetts Amherst Minutemen, having captured the Spencer Penrose Award as Division I Men’s Coach of the Year in 2019. The 51-year-old from Canton, New York, followed up that award winning campaign by guiding UMass to its first NCAA Division I Men’s Ice Hockey National Championship in 2020-21.
According to his UMass coaching bio, “Massachusetts hockey has made a meteoric rise under Carvel’s guidance, including four of the top-10 winningest seasons in UMass’ 91-season history, the program’s first NCAA title, first NCAA Runner-Up finish, first Hockey East regular season and tournament titles and first Hobey Baker winner. On his watch, the Minutemen posted their third-straight 20-win season in 2020-21. He has coached four Hobey Baker finalists, two Hobey Hat Trick Finalists and one Hobey Baker winner in his nine-year head coaching career.”
It makes sense for us to discuss Brad Berry next because he followed in Greg Carvel’s footsteps in winning the Spencer Penrose Award as Division I Men’s Coach of the Year in 2020.
Have we mentioned lately the College Hockey Inc. Virtual Coaches Clinic is stacked with incredible presenters?!
Berry played in the NHL for 241 games between 1985 and 1994, but before that the 56-year-old Alberta product played for the University of North Dakota, where he has been head coach since 2014-15. Berry was an associate under Dave Hakstol for five seasons (with stints assistant coaching the AHL’s Manitoba Moose and NHL’s Columbus Blue Jackets in the middle of that) and replaced Hakstol when he moved on to the Philadelphia Flyers.
Over the past six winning seasons, Berry has guided UND to a 138-63-24 record, with three NCAA Tournament appearances and a national championship in 2016. According to his Fighting Hawks bio, Berry helped develop more than two dozen future NHLers in his first five seasons, including Brock Boeser (Vancouver), Drake Caggiula (Chicago) and Troy Stecher (Detroit).
As a student athlete at Brown University, Cara Morey was dominant at field hockey and ice hockey. After hanging up her cleats, Morey played two seasons in the NWHL with the Montreal Wingstars and the Brampton Thunder, before moving into the coaching ranks.
Fast-forward to today and Morey, a 43-year-old Ontario product, is in her fifth year behind the bench with the Princeton women’s hockey program after serving as assistant for six seasons. With Morey as head coach, the Tigers “won their first ECAC tournament title, an Ivy League championship, qualified for two NCAA quarterfinals, set the program wins record, and established itself as a weekly inclusion in the national top-10 rankings,” according to her team bio.
Through three seasons with the Tigers, Morey boasts a 60-28-10 record and a 43-18-5 mark in ECAC Hockey.
Todd Woodcroft is still relatively new to coaching college hockey having taken on the role as head coach for the University of Vermont in April of 2020. The former Winnipeg Jets assistant took over coaching duties as the pandemic was taking over the world, meaning his first NCAA season was first delayed, then shortened to 12 games.
Woodcroft, an Ontario native who also worked for the Calgary Flames, Los Angeles Kings, Minnesota Wild and Washington Capitals in different scouting roles, will finally be able to put his stamp on the Catamounts this upcoming season. And there’s little doubt the team will flourish.
In addition to his NHL coaching stint with the Jets, Woodcroft, 49, coached in six IIHF World Championships, winning gold with Team Canada in 2004 and Team Sweden in 2017.
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