PDA

View Full Version : An Open Letter to Coach Umile



Pages : 1 2 3 [4] 5 6 7 8 9

thecomicbookguy
04-01-2010, 11:40 AM
I thought there was an alumni game just last August.
I do not believe so. There had been one for the previous few years, but not last year.

thecomicbookguy
04-01-2010, 11:43 AM
If I google it I see - Bob 77 and Bob 52 both of Rye. Gary would be 62 this year so the connection is some relative. Maybe brother?

I have a hard time believing Umile (as loyal as he is, to a fault) not responding to a former teamate as Gary would have been a senior D-man on the same team as Umile sophomore year.
Unless he has a personal address for Umile, I believe all e-mails to the coach actually go to his Administrative Assistant, who may or may not recognize a name that the coach would.

JB
04-01-2010, 11:58 AM
Unless he has a personal address for Umile, I believe all e-mails to the coach actually go to his Administrative Assistant, who may or may not recognize a name that the coach would.

I look at it this way. If I was Gary and had a message for a former teammate I would pick up the phone and call. Having played on the same UNH team somehow I think that phone call gets connected or returned.

If I send coach Umile a letter I would be surprised if he even sees it. I have been to enough talks by coach Umile that I am fairly certain he recognizes my face. May even know my name (more likely just my last) as he and my father have worked together on a few things. More likely he just sees me as a fan (or a stalker).

Also appears to be a Bob 38 of Rye who is potentially a son of Gary.

goblue
04-01-2010, 12:00 PM
Somewhat apropos of this topic,


"Dick Umile Named Finalist For Penrose Award,
8th Time As A Finalist For Umile"


http://www.wmur.com/sports/23017594/detail.html

JB
04-01-2010, 12:07 PM
List of finalists - snagged it from an announcement about Eaves on UW website



2009-2010 AHCA Men’s Ice Hockey Division I Coach of the Year Finalists
Enrico Blasi, Miami*#@
Mark Dennehy, Merrimack*
Mike Eaves, Wisconsin#
George Gwozdecky, Denver*@
Nate Leaman, Union*
C.J. Marottolo, Sacred Heart*
Tom Serratore, Bemidji State*
Dick Umile, New Hampshire*@
Wayne Wilson, RIT#
Jerry York, Boston College#

* Conference Coach of the Year
# NCAA Frozen Four Participant
@ Previous Winner of the Spencer Penrose Award

RockTheWhit
04-01-2010, 12:39 PM
List of finalists - snagged it from an announcement about Eaves on UW website

Congratulations to Coach Umile. How has York not won this award?

Chuck Murray
04-01-2010, 01:11 PM
Congratulations to Coach Umile. How has York not won this award?

Especially after the '07/'08 season. Glaring omission ... :eek: ... maybe he gets it this time around?

Jon
04-01-2010, 01:16 PM
Unless he has a personal address for Umile, I believe all e-mails to the coach actually go to his Administrative Assistant, who may or may not recognize a name that the coach would.

Umile would probably get confused and think Chuck was sending him the sequel to the Godfaddah.

rufus
04-01-2010, 01:44 PM
List of finalists - snagged it from an announcement about Eaves on UW website

What, no TIMMAY???? After he did the outstanding job of leading his team to two games over .500?

There's no justice, I tell ya!!

Chuck Murray
04-01-2010, 07:25 PM
Umile would probably get confused and think Chuck was sending him the sequel to the Godfaddah.

Long time no see, Jon. Hope all is well. :) Is the PC faithful yearning for a return to the glory days under Paul Pooley yet?? :p ;)

Just to recap - I didn't/haven't written anything to Coach Umile, other than what's at the front of this thread. But apparently someone with long-term ties to the program has reached out several times with some ideas on how to build additional ties with the UNH hockey alumni, hasn't heard back, and now has gone public with it in the "Letters to the Editor" section of the Portsmouth Herald yesterday (3/31/10). I probably set him off here. :o

I guess now we're debating if it's a mountain or a molehill ... :confused: :p

Greg Ambrose
04-01-2010, 08:38 PM
Umile used to have his own email address, but no longer. His administrative assistant screens them all. But call the hockey office at the appropriate time, state your case, and you can probably get through.

Gary Jacquith is my era (and from Lynnfield to boot), he played with Umile, so if he called the coach I am certain that they would talk. I have no idea who Bob Jacquith is, but he is unbelievably misinformed. The Friends of UNH Hockey have underwritten (ice time, jerseys, refs, post-game gathering) the alumni game for several years. It is routinely played the same weekend as the Friends Golf Tournament which is always the first Monday in August. It is done then because a lot of former players come into town for the golf and, given the opportunity to skate at the Whit with their old buddies, or those they have heard or read about, they lace them up.

Despite how hard the committee that organizes the alumni game works, participation in the game has dropped off. A few years ago there were enough players to have two games. Two years ago they barely had enough players for one game. I don't want to speak out of turn, but I do believe a game is in the works for this year. I'll keep everyone posted.

I also want to take this opportunity to put a plug in for the Friends. I hope everyone knows that the organization raises a lot of money for the hockey team, primarily through the golf tournament, 50/50 raffle, and concession sales. I can assure you that the finances of UNH Hockey would be a lot more dismal without the efforts of the Friends.

What I really don't like is when I hear the Friends is for old fogies or it is elitist, or it is cliquish. We are an organization that puts in a lot of time and works hard at what we do. Our good friend Gibber has been on the board of directors for several years because he took the time to make himself known, and put the effort in to earn a spot on the board. We have other younger members, including the original (well maybe not) Cowbell Guy. These folks have good ideas, just like the ones I read on various threads here. I encourage all of you who participate here to think about joining and participating in Friends activities. Without new blood, any organization will whither and die. That would not be good for UNH Hockey. Just my 2 cents.

Jon
04-01-2010, 08:41 PM
Long time no see, Jon. Hope all is well. :) Is the PC faithful yearning for a return to the glory days under Paul Pooley yet?? :p ;)

You need to post more often. I believe the current president's attempts to built art buildings and focus of the schools' Dominican background is probably an attempt to distract us from the fact that PC's two marquee sports are dead last in their respective conferences.

We're working a group mea culpa to be sent over to South Bend, IN.

Chuck Murray
04-02-2010, 01:14 PM
Despite how hard the committee that organizes the alumni game works, participation in the game has dropped off.
A few years ago there were enough players to have two games. Two years ago they barely had enough players for one game. I don't want to speak out of turn, but I do believe a game is in the works for this year. I'll keep everyone posted.

That would be excellent. :)


I also want to take this opportunity to put a plug in for the Friends. I hope everyone knows that the organization raises a lot of money for the hockey team, primarily through the golf tournament, 50/50 raffle, and concession sales. I can assure you that the finances of UNH Hockey would be a lot more dismal without the efforts of the Friends.

What I really don't like is when I hear the Friends is for old fogies or it is elitist, or it is cliquish. We are an organization that puts in a lot of time and works hard at what we do. Our good friend Gibber has been on the board of directors for several years because he took the time to make himself known, and put the effort in to earn a spot on the board. We have other younger members, including the original (well maybe not) Cowbell Guy. These folks have good ideas, just like the ones I read on various threads here. I encourage all of you who participate here to think about joining and participating in Friends activities. Without new blood, any organization will whither and die. That would not be good for UNH Hockey. Just my 2 cents.

I've heard that charge leveled by others before, but as someone who used to be a basic-level member of Friends for several years - admittedly mostly to allow our kids to get autographs from their favorite players! - that was never our impression. Certainly there are various membership levels, and the more active (and generous) you wish to be, the more access you get to certain things. But as someone who participated on a minimal level, and kept a low profile (and was very happy to do so) ... I never felt we weren't getting good value for our membership. And we got to meet a lot of people that shared our interests in UNH Hockey - some from this board, past and present.

My guess is that folks aggrieved by Friends being "elitist" or "cliquish" might look at the things the higher-value memberships get you access to that the lower levels don't, and wish they had more access for less money? Clearly, students and younger fans/alums might not have the financial flexibility to pay for "Center Ice" memberships. But you get plenty of access even for the "Family" rate. The post-game skybox gigs alone are very good value. :)

I've always felt that one of the great things about college hockey is that it's very accessible on any number of levels if you get involved, ask around ... or simply aren't afraid to say "hi" to one of the non-participating coaches at the Hockey East tourney (for example). It's amazing how accommodating and friendly most of these people are. And you don't even need to be a "Friend" to make that happen. It's stuff like that which keeps me coming back. :) :)

Having said that ... I'm not sure Coach Umile revels in the PR stuff, and I'm not sure if that's a sticking point for some of the disaffected "Friends" who might want him to do more on that front? I'd love to get the impressions of folks here on that issue. I recall that many moons ago, one of the things our UMaine-iac friends used to rave about with Walshy (RIP) was his accessibility, and willingness to engage them when the opportunity arose. So when Walshy got himself in hot water, the UMaine-iacs were very protective (I seem to recall the term "apologists" being thrown around these parts frequently :o ) and maybe that was one of the main reasons why? Is Coach Umile capable of meeting the PR demands of his position at this stage of his career? And if not ... isn't that another argument in favor of bringing in "new blood" to assist?

JB
04-02-2010, 01:29 PM
Having said that ... I'm not sure Coach Umile revels in the PR stuff, and I'm not sure if that's a sticking point for some of the disaffected "Friends" who might want him to do more on that front? I'd love to get the impressions of folks here on that issue. I recall that many moons ago, one of the things our UMaine-iac friends used to rave about with Walshy (RIP) was his accessibility, and willingness to engage them when the opportunity arose. So when Walshy got himself in hot water, the UMaine-iacs were very protective (I seem to recall the term "apologists" being thrown around these parts frequently :o ) and maybe that was one of the main reasons why? Is Coach Umile capable of meeting the PR demands of his position at this stage of his career? And if not ... isn't that another argument in favor of bringing in "new blood" to assist?

My father is part of Rotary and his club has Umile in every year before or early in the season to talk. I make a point of going to that talk as a guest, if I am not traveling (example missed one year as I was in China on business). At those talks Umile does a great job of the PR thing. But that is a small group of professionals and not likely to pitch any wicked curves at him.

Inside Hockey puts the mid week and post game press conferences online. It is probably new for him to have a camera but that is an area he might want to smooth out the performance.

At most friends gatherings it is one of the assistants - seemed this year mostly Lassonde.

RockTheWhit
04-02-2010, 01:53 PM
At most friends gatherings it is one of the assistants - seemed this year mostly Lassonde.

I think I would go to them too if (at age 50) my other option for a Friday/Saturday night was going home to my mother :p ;) .

JB
04-02-2010, 02:10 PM
I think I would go to them too if (at age 50) my other option for a Friday/Saturday night was going home to my mother :p ;) .

???

RockTheWhit
04-02-2010, 02:18 PM
???

Lassonde lives with his mother and catches some flak about it.

WildKitty
04-02-2010, 09:46 PM
Actually, something that's stuck in my craw for a few years now...

On a radio interview, Umile was asked about the postseason - unfortunately, my mind is a sieve and I don't remember the exact question - and Umile told the radio personalities that he doesn't (or didn't, at the time) consider it his job to get the team excited in the post-season.

If he considers it his job now, our last game certainly didn't show it. Maybe the Cornell game, but certainly not the RIT fiasco.

Now, I know in my heart that, barring some gross misconduct, UNH will not dismiss Umile except on his terms. I have seen (IMO): stellar goalies, average to better-than-average forwards, and average to less-than-average defense-men. Break that down amongst assistants as you will. I don't think I need to state that I agree some coaching needs to change. Aside from the assistants (who probably won't change, just a gut feeling), how about just the perspective Umile takes? How long was it before he started using a time-out strategy! Or the near-complete lack of 4th line use in the last two Vermont games. We (a few friends, rather, I've more been an observer) mock his crossed-arm, leaned-back stance, particularly when he isn't working the team up in low situations.

One can (and many probably will) argue that it is the job of the captains to work the team up. Yes. That is the case. And when the captains get disheartened - which happens, when you're not prepared for an opponent and realize it three minutes into the first period - whose job is it then? Second period of the RIT game, towards the middle/end, the team on the bench was sitting. Umile was leaning. The play was sucking. Okay, we can say we expected to win it, and therefore did not prepare well enough. You cannot blame that all on the team, or on the captains, or on the coach. Everyone was at fault. Who is in the position to prevent that from happening?

In summary, (for those with AD(H)D :rolleyes: ) I truly doubt our current coaching staff is going anywhere, and I feel it is high time (three seasons ago or more) that this staff seriously reconsider their philosophy. Leaning back against the glass in a tied game at the NCAA Regionals isn't gonna bring us anything.

Vent over. Sorry for the steam.

ChinaHockey
04-02-2010, 10:35 PM
I would like to see UNH be more of a hard working team and not so transition hockey based. I would like to see them out work teams, not get a goal off a break. I love a speed game, don't get me wrong. But you can't win 'em all on mid ice turnovers. The run and gun is a great way to win in the regular season, but they need adjust this style when games really count. I hope the existing staff can adjust. I also would love to know why star players that are choosing the college route decide on the BC's/BU's (etc.) and not UNH. You don't need the best players in the world to make the Frozen Four, history has taught us that much. But what is missing when it comes down to UNH and another school? Is it the coach? Is it the style of play? Just wondering.

Chuck Murray
04-02-2010, 11:49 PM
On a radio interview, Umile was asked about the postseason - unfortunately, my mind is a sieve and I don't remember the exact question - and Umile told the radio personalities that he doesn't (or didn't, at the time) consider it his job to get the team excited in the post-season.

Assuming this quote is even close to accurate ... this could explain a lot. :(


One can (and many probably will) argue that it is the job of the captains to work the team up. Yes. That is the case. And when the captains get disheartened - which happens, when you're not prepared for an opponent and realize it three minutes into the first period - whose job is it then? Second period of the RIT game, towards the middle/end, the team on the bench was sitting. Umile was leaning. The play was sucking. Okay, we can say we expected to win it, and therefore did not prepare well enough. You cannot blame that all on the team, or on the captains, or on the coach. Everyone was at fault. Who is in the position to prevent that from happening?

I think the argument - if there is one - about who is ultimately responsible for motivating a team turns on several factors. Head and shoulders above ALL factors though, is the experience level of the players, and whether players themselves are mature and experienced enough to fully grasp the mantle of leadership. Just because you slap a "C" or an "A" on a kid's sweater does not necessarily bestow magical leadership qualities upon them. Players who are so-called "born leaders" are a rare breed; players who learn leadership traits are far more common, but usually it doesn't happen overnight. And a large majority of players in ANY sport are probably better followers than leaders.

At the pro level, I've always found the example of the Detroit Red Wings of the 1990's to be instructive. From the outset of that decade, the Wings had amassed an amazing collection of talent that would go on to serve as the core of a team that would be at or near the top of the NHL for maybe longer than any NHL team in the post-expansion era. But in the early years of that run, it was a team most associated with great regular seasons that turned into premature post-season exits against lesser opponents year after year.

Exit Bryan Murray, whose assortment of puzzled post-season "deer in the headlights", what-just-happened-to-us-again looks became a bizzare rite of Spring. Enter Scotty Bowman, someone who knew how to win when the rubber hit the road. Through the transformation of Steve Yzerman (who'd already been wearing the "C" for a decade into his early 30's by the time Bowman arrived) from a very talented yet one-dimensional offensive player to a legitimate two-way, team-first, leader-by-example type, the Wings learn how to win the big ones. Yzerman goes from being a guy who got cut from Team Canada at the apex of his scoring years, to a national icon who wears the "C" for his country when he is well past his prime (and now acts as the GM of the 2010 gold-medal Olympic champions). Does any of that happen without the introduction of Bowman to "teach" the Wings - and especially Yzerman - about true leadership and the ethos of winning? I doubt it.

OK, you say ... but the Wings were loaded with world-class talents, so it's not comparable to UNH's situation. And that's probably right. So let's look at the world of the NFL, and the example of Vince Lombardi, who walked into a Green Bay team that was the dregs of the league, quickly turned them into a winning team in his first year (1959), came up about 10 yards short in the 1960 NFL title game (his only post-season loss EVER), and then led them to an unparalleled string of five (5) NFL titles over the next seven seasons. All by transforming basically the same core of players his predecessor had left for him after the 1958 season. And the funny thing is, after taking a year off after retiring in the wake of SB II, he was basically in the process of doing the same exact thing with the Washington Redskins, when cancer claimed him on the eve of the 1970 season, allowing George Allen to eventually take over where Lombardi had left off, turning that moribund franchise around.

He did it without Johnny Unitas ... without Jim Brown ... without Dick Butkus or Gayle Sayers, or Deacon Jones, or even freakin' Homer Jones. No flash, no blue chips (save possibly the mercurial Paul Hornung) ... but Lombardi taught his teams how to win on AND off the field, and by the time his era in Green Bay was at a close, his players probably didn't need him to motivate them. But he was still out there regardless, leading from the front.

Bringing that forward to the current state of UNH hockey ... it's easy to say that, yeah, the seniors should lead, and the coach shouldn't have to be the rah-rah guy. But usually in college sports, your team's leadership is going to be experiencing their first year as captains when they hit their senior year. If I'm the head coach ... does it feel right for me to passively delegate all motivational leadership functions to a kid/kids who are half your age (less?), and have a fraction of your big-game experience (win or lose) at this level?

If you haven't come to the same conclusion as me yet ... next time you see Jack Parker behind the bench at the Beanpot or in an NCAA tourney game, tell me what you see. And tell me if you EVER see one of his teams come out flat or unprepared. BU obviously doesn't always win those games, but they never ever get caught by surprise or downright embarrassed. You can say the same thing about BC under York (although his style is more restrained), and you used to be able to say the same thing about UMaine under Walshy.

Talent and tactics definitely play into the picture, no doubt. But there is a HUGE piece of the game that gets played in the players' heads and hearts - especially in hockey - and to not maximize your efforts to get the most out of your players on the motivational front is a major oversight. And if Coach Umile's approach is to delegate that stuff to kids who are still beginners in the leadership game, I think he's missing the boat, and badly. :( JMHO.