Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

UNH Wildcats 2021/2022 - Return of the Champions of October?

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Chuck rather than re post your post, in regard to Souza not being tough enough with the officials, I thought he had plenty to say to them in the Dartmouth game. I do agree UNH was getting pushed around A LOT in that game. And in my short Umile tenure, I'd agree he would let them definitely know his displeasure on calls etc. I wasn't too happy with the officiating (and I'm not a hockeyref haha) in the Dartmouth game, just saying.

    Anyway! Question: if we HAD played BC, what do you think the score would have been? I'm thinking 4-1 BC...
    Here we go 'Cats!!

    Comment


    • Originally posted by HockeyRef View Post
      Chuck rather than re post your post, in regard to Souza not being tough enough with the officials, I thought he had plenty to say to them in the Dartmouth game. I do agree UNH was getting pushed around A LOT in that game. And in my short Umile tenure, I'd agree he would let them definitely know his displeasure on calls etc. I wasn't too happy with the officiating (and I'm not a hockeyref haha) in the Dartmouth game, just saying.
      Keep in mind, your experience with Umile was as an older man, in some ways resigned to the stagnation of his program, and knowing he wasn't likely to ever get a do-over for the '99 and '03 Finals losses. I vividly remember sitting pretty close to the UNH bench on the occasion of his last visit to the HEA Tourney in Boston, and he seemed wistful at times, possibly realizing that there might not be too many trips back to these big games left ahead of him in his already-fading career. This was a guy who literally missed out on the '97 trip to the Fleet Center due to cardiac issues while he was still only in his 40's. Granted, it likely had more to do with poor lifestyle choices than a hot-running temper, but the younger Umile ran super hot.

      As a fan, at the time, it was nice knowing your team's coach gave a crap, and was pushing to make sure his guys got a fair shake in a Boston-centric league. And say what you will, but Umile won a lot more games than he ever lost, won more than his legendary predecessor, and was at the helm for most of UNH's landmark games, with Coach Holt a distant second. So he built up some program credibility in the league and its officials; Souza seems to act as if these things are beyond his control?

      So in a game where it already felt there was some "home cooking" involved, we saw the officials let the hosts off the hook on a potential major penalty (apparently all 4 officials and the video missed it?) at a crucial juncture, and then awarded the hosts with a decisive penalty shot (against a woozy UNH goalie), then swallow their whistles for the duration. UNH probably would have struggled for a second goal anyway, but the point I took out of it all is that MS7 has no currency with the refs. As a result, sometimes it feels like current-day UNH is the Washington Generals of Hockey East.

      Originally posted by HockeyRef View Post
      Anyway! Question: if we HAD played BC, what do you think the score would have been? I'm thinking 4-1 BC...
      We'll never know, 'Ref - it would have been nice to find out. BC was always the marquee team at the event, but the hosts got themselves into the finals, which was probably the tourney's goal for the week(end). Personally, I'd think long and hard about returning to any event where my program was treated as a stepping stone for an (inferior) host team's advancement. Solution? Find another event(s) and/or create your own event. You guys know where I stand on that ...
      Sworn Enemy of the Perpetually Offended
      Montreal Expos Forever ...

      Comment


      • Originally posted by Chuck Murray View Post

        Mercyhurst is D-1 in name only, we all know that. Isn't losing to Dartmouth embarrassing enough?

        All in all, my point is, this Ledyard thing was no really different to UNH than my "NH Riverstone".

        Sometimes you need to take a step backwards to take two steps forward, no?

        I suspect we're all a little irked while awaiting the arrival of the new UNH AD ...
        I know I can't wait to see games like this on the ice:

        https://unhwildcats.com/news/2021/12...day-night.aspx
        UNH Hockey: From "Why Not Us' to "Woe is Us"

        Comment


        • Chuck, once again you have exaggerated the information to make your own facts. I realize that if you say it you feel it must be true. You know the old adage, say it 3 times and it becomes fact.
          yes it is easy to believe that BC would be the marquee team in most tournaments. But Dartmouth didn’t use us as the stepping stone so that they could be in the finals. They would have chosen to play MH in the first game if that were true. And why would you not go back if you really want to encourage in state rivalry? I do agree that MS does not often go toe to toe with the officials. However he was appropriately strong last night.
          And yes Ref there was a time that DU was as crazy as you can get with the HE officials. He would literally scream at them and almost need to be held back from going on the ice. It was fun to watch but as Chuck pointed out, he appeared to bring on a heart event that really slowed him down. Age may have played a role but I believe he got lots of feedback to bring it down several notches. Chuck says 1995ish but I would have said it was later in his career, say early 200Os. I ll let someone with Stronger memory cells clarify that as it really doesn’t matter.

          Comment


          • Originally posted by After the Whistle View Post
            Chuck, once again you have exaggerated the information to make your own facts. I realize that if you say it you feel it must be true. You know the old adage, say it 3 times and it becomes fact.
            Learned that trick from the old-time BC posters back in the day. ;-) No, seriously, you were right in the first place, saying simply that I believe it to be true. IF 3 other folks go with it, then that's WAY better. Right now, it appears I'm stuck at 1, so I'll keep pitching. Anyway ...

            Originally posted by After the Whistle View Post
            yes it is easy to believe that BC would be the marquee team in most tournaments. But Dartmouth didn't use us as the stepping stone so that they could be in the finals. They would have chosen to play MH in the first game if that were true.
            But that would have resulted in HEA rivals UNH and BC playing an extra (avoidable) game against a league rival that wasn't the tourney final. Why would that be a compelling opening round match-up for either UNH or BC? So in all likelihood, the hosts had a realistic choice of facing either BC or UNH in the opening round. To no one's surprise, they opted for UNH.

            Originally posted by After the Whistle View Post
            And why would you not go back if you really want to encourage in state rivalry? I do agree that MS does not often go toe to toe with the officials. However he was appropriately strong last night.
            Of course I want to encourage an in-state rivalry. The '79 ECAC final between the two schools was Dartmouth's all-time high water mark, and also marked the first of what has become only three (3) post-season tourney wins for UNH. The 50th year anniversary of that game is just over 7 years away. Do you think either Dartmouth, UNH or WMUR will mark the occasion? Ideally, there could be a "New Riverstone" maybe a few years into its new existence around to facilitate honoring the 50th??

            I'm relieved MS7 was "appropriately strong" last night in the midst of a 7-1 blowout of a D-2 school. ;-)

            Mercyhurst College | NCAA.com

            Originally posted by After the Whistle View Post
            And yes Ref there was a time that DU was as crazy as you can get with the HE officials. He would literally scream at them and almost need to be held back from going on the ice. It was fun to watch but as Chuck pointed out, he appeared to bring on a heart event that really slowed him down. Age may have played a role but I believe he got lots of feedback to bring it down several notches. Chuck says 1995ish but I would have said it was later in his career, say early 200Os. I ll let someone with Stronger memory cells clarify that as it really doesn't matter.
            Nope, actually it was 1997. It was the night after UNH had advanced to Boston with a win over UMass Amherst, and Coach Umile ended up missing a 4-0 semifinal win over BC (that is NOT a misprint) and the 4-2 tourney final loss to BU afterward. I believe he was back on the bench for the Round of 12 loss (3-2) to Colorado College (bonus points if you can name CC's AD at the time) that ended the season. It was around this time the "Umile can't win the big ones" began to pick up steam.

            Umile Suffers Heart Attack - College Hockey | USCHO.com

            1997 Hockey East Men's Ice Hockey Tournament - Wikipedia

            1997 NCAA Division I Men's Ice Hockey Tournament - Wikipedia

            Ironically, it was after the heart attack when Umile entered the prime "apex" seasons for the program, with 4 FF trips out of the next 6 seasons, including the back-to-back HEA titles at the end of that period. His explosions on the bench toned down in volume and severity, reflecting ATW's recollection. Those six years convinced a few of us that the "can't win the big ones" thing was overstated, but once Coaches Serino (Merrimack after '98) and McCloskey (UNH Women after '02) moved on, the slippage began, slowly but steadily.

            Maybe 'Watcher, C-H-C or one of our alums-in-absentia can chime in on this ... but it seems that even if you believe Umile should have retired sooner, the pivotal point seems to have circa 2014, when if Umile had retired, he'd have saved himself the tarnishing of his reputation of his last few unsuccessful seasons (repeating Coach Holt's error, and then some), and been able to turn over the program in much more decent shape to an experienced successor. His assistants at the time were Borek and Jim Tortorella, and while I was never a huge Borek fan - perhaps recalling what he did/didn't do at post-Jackson glory years Lake State - I always thought highly of Tortorella. He had run a successful D-3 program at Colby, seemed to interact and instruct his UNH guys well during his tenure, had the name recognition (albeit mostly from his more famous brother), and mysteriously left UNH after a successful 2014 season. He's resurfaced as an assistant at Harvard these last few seasons. Here's an article on Tortorella's departure, which names a lot of familiar names in the mix to replace him:

            Associate head coach Jim Tortorella out at UNH - SB Nation College Hockey (sbncollegehockey.com)

            Sorry for the long and winding road today, folks. Hopefully 2022 marks a turnaround of fortunes for UNH Hockey, we'll see who gets appointed as the new AD, and wait for the dominoes to fall ...
            Sworn Enemy of the Perpetually Offended
            Montreal Expos Forever ...

            Comment


            • Originally posted by Chuck Murray View Post
              Sorry for the long and winding road today, folks. Hopefully 2022 marks a turnaround of fortunes for UNH Hockey, we'll see who gets appointed as the new AD, and wait for the dominoes to fall ...
              I was just thinking the exact thing on my walk today. The fate of UNH hockey rides on a good choice.


              Ironically, it was after the heart attack when Umile entered the prime "apex" seasons for the program, with 4 FF trips out of the next 6 seasons, including the back-to-back HEA titles at the end of that period. His explosions on the bench toned down in volume and severity, reflecting ATW's recollection. Those six years convinced a few of us that the "can't win the big ones" thing was overstated, but once Coaches Serino (Merrimack after '98) and McCloskey (UNH Women after '02) moved on, the slippage began, slowly but steadily.
              Convinced us, or convinced recruits To quote our common friend, "We're only immortal, for a limited time." The image of UNH that McCloskey was able to sell started to slip, and once you lose the perception, results follow.

              even if you believe Umile should have retired sooner, the pivotal point seems to have circa 2014, when if Umile had retired, he'd have saved himself the tarnishing of his reputation of his last few unsuccessful seasons (repeating Coach Holt's error, and then some), and been able to turn over the program in much more decent shape to an experienced successor.
              I have no issue with a coach hanging on a bit too long. It's part of the bargain, just like signing free agents knowing you'll be losing value the last bit. That tarnish fades as the years go on.

              Where he/Blue Skies destroyed the future was in the replacement process and the replacement choice. At that point, a change in culture was needed. Here's Bill Barr speaking of the importance of changing culture after losing seasons:
              Maine coach Ben Barr says he's been searching for a long time for the next Ross Mauermann, who helped change the culture at PC. And Barr believes he's found him in freshman David Breazeale.
              We all knew the choice of Souza was not based on merit, and unfortunately, so too did the recruits.

              NCAA watcher replied
              04-28-2016, 10:17 AM
              Re: UNH Commits & Recruiting: 2016 and Beyond

              3) Part of my unhappiness/expressed concern was that I always felt a change at UNH would be sudden, dramatic, and a huge selling point with momentum. (And I don't mean necessarily getting a Tony Granato type name. I was thinking this momentum would work even if they got a Guy Gadowsky a couple years back at Princeton, or another up and coming HC/established assistant like Ben Barr). We can debate how realistic that would have been is debatable. That UNH chose to do this gradually, and with a replacement well down the "known" scale, prevented any of that buzz. Now, I suspect we are on a much more gradual Union/Quinnipiac/Yale model, that build gradually and occasionally hit the mark with a surprise developing kid (the Ghostebieres, Anas, etc, of the world). If you want to know my antipathy toward Dick Umile, it is not directed at Souza because of Souza's merits, but rather that Umile imposed a model very different than the one I thought would be in UNH's best interest. For example, I would have felt differently if he had announced he was retiring in 3 years, and at that point UNH tabbed Souza based on his success the next 3 years either at U.Conn or even as an assistant at UNH. Even then it would be an easier sale to the kids that UNH has tabbed a "rising star" who can point to U.Conn's rise from 11th in HE to 7th from 2013 to 2018, or who recruited X, Y and Z to UNH from 2015 to 2018. That actual success would be a selling point. Instead, we have Umile picking a kid who has the skills needed, but lacks a track record. And I say this as a type B personality, but Souza doesn't strike me as a Type A, Shawn Walsh guy who has a definite plan to assume control on day 1 -- and even if he does, Umile's plan prevented that. I genuinely hope Souza can do everything that has been put on his plate, but I think Umile did him a great disservice. I'm glad to see some movement on him imparting his plan, making realistic decisions on existing committed players..
              Sadly, Souza didn't have a plan.

              Plus, add in Souza's statements in 2016 about his philosophy of a physical team vs. recruiting skill:

              2) Ability to sell vs. scout. I have no doubt that Corson Green has interest from others, but would not put him in the fought over category. Souza seems to be more comfortable jumping on kids before the recruiting war develops. He's going to have to be a pretty good scout to identify those hidden gems, because there's 60 some odd teams that know about these kids but have not pulled the trigger yet. I'm willing to wait and see on those, though I personally am less comfortable with that model, having seen too many "unkown but I see something" Dylan Mallers not develop. Even with Lowell's success I would not be comfortable with their recruit pipeline. Add in Souza's philosophy of size more so than skill (which is where he had success in finding the unknowns like Tyler Thompson) and we just differ on philosophy.
              funny that when you recruit size vs. skill, you end up averaging 1.5 goals a game.
              Last edited by NCAA watcher; 01-02-2022, 11:39 AM.
              The Umile legacy:
              14-15 8th place,
              15-16 10th place
              16-17 10th place
              17-18 11th place
              18-19 8th place
              19-20 9th place
              20-21 10th place
              21-22 9th place

              Comment


              • Just curious; does anyone know what kind of contract Souza has? Bringing in a new AD doesn't automatically ensure they are going to fire a coach. Of course, that depends on just WHO that new hire is of course. Bet we'll know after the NCAA tournament and no one should be surprised if/when UNH hires a familiar face. There is still a lot of hockey left as well, and, bet if there is an 'outside' hire other than someone overly familiar with UNH athletics (notice how I'm skirting the issue here) regardless of how UNH ends up this year would not be surprised if there's a 'lets see what happens this year' (meaning the 2022-2023 season) before any HC change is made. Sorry for the run on sentence.
                Here we go 'Cats!!

                Comment


                • Originally posted by HockeyRef View Post
                  Just curious; does anyone know what kind of contract Souza has? Bringing in a new AD doesn't automatically ensure they are going to fire a coach. Of course, that depends on just WHO that new hire is of course. Bet we'll know after the NCAA tournament and no one should be surprised if/when UNH hires a familiar face. There is still a lot of hockey left as well, and, bet if there is an 'outside' hire other than someone overly familiar with UNH athletics (notice how I'm skirting the issue here) regardless of how UNH ends up this year would not be surprised if there's a 'lets see what happens this year' (meaning the 2022-2023 season) before any HC change is made. Sorry for the run on sentence.
                  I agree. i wouldn't think the new AD will not be ready to pull the trigger immediately .. easier to carry him for one more year to confirm or refute the current trajectory.
                  As for contracts, it's a complete guess (unless Sean Pickett wants to FOI UNH). But he's had four years (and three as an assistant), so would likely have already run his original deal. Would BlueSkies have given a multi-year extension, or his he year to year now?
                  The Umile legacy:
                  14-15 8th place,
                  15-16 10th place
                  16-17 10th place
                  17-18 11th place
                  18-19 8th place
                  19-20 9th place
                  20-21 10th place
                  21-22 9th place

                  Comment


                  • Originally posted by HockeyRef View Post
                    Just curious; does anyone know what kind of contract Souza has? Bringing in a new AD doesn't automatically ensure they are going to fire a coach. Of course, that depends on just WHO that new hire is of course. Bet we'll know after the NCAA tournament and no one should be surprised if/when UNH hires a familiar face. There is still a lot of hockey left as well, and, bet if there is an 'outside' hire other than someone overly familiar with UNH athletics (notice how I'm skirting the issue here) regardless of how UNH ends up this year would not be surprised if there's a 'lets see what happens this year' (meaning the 2022-2023 season) before any HC change is made. Sorry for the run on sentence.
                    Way to "skirt the issue" 'Ref. :-)

                    I don't recall the length of MS7's contract, or whether it's ever been extended. I believe this is his 7th year on the staff, and fourth season in charge. It's possible he is still on his original deal, which I'd guess would have run 6-7 years (the 3 planned assistant seasons, and 3-4 more as HC to allow him to establish his first few recruiting classes), which means the original deal either ended last summer OR will end this summer. IF the latter, I doubt the outgoing AD would have let Souza start a "lame duck" season without a commitment beyond the term, and it'd be tough to justify extending him more than 2 years, based on what he's shown us so far. So my guess is MS7 is not holding a long-term commitment at this point, and a buyout if the new AD chooses to go with someone else shouldn't be more than another year tops. With BS now being on his way out, I don't see UNH allowing any more extensions on his watch. For all we know, BS may have tried to extend MacDonnell already, and when he tried to sell it to Dean Dean, DD (a new one for Darius) suggested retirement was more appropriate for both men instead??

                    See ... where you "skirt the issue" 'Ref, yours truly engages in rampant speculation. WAY more fun!!

                    Now DD seems to be fairly "plugged in" to the Athletics side of things, so (more speculation) I would expect him to be right in the midst of the hiring process for the new AD. With a decision already made on Football (Santos), and with Men's Soccer seemingly in very good hands for the foreseeable future, it's hard not to think DD will be looking for someone to revive Hockey (both sides) and Hoops. I'd guess MS7 is on thin ice, more so than even Bill Herrion, but at some point someone at the top should be demanding that Men's Hoops grow and move back across the street. Women's Soccer HC may also be vulnerable, with these PC times being what they are, and with a man with a nondescript W-L record currently in the job.

                    I would expect DD (and his blue ribbon panel) to question the new AD candidates on not only philosophy and vision issues, but also to plumb their preparedness to bring in a couple of immediate quality new hires in prominent programs, and with Hockey being at the top of that list. In looking at the possibility of a new Men's Hockey HC, I'd want the new AD to already have a short list of candidates he would be looking to consider, whether he is hired at UNH or Fill-In-The-Blank D-1 Hockey University. And if one of those folks on the short list is a prominent respected national candidate - as what happened last offseason (whether unexpectedly or not?) in Orono - I would want that AD candidate to guarantee he would act immediately to get that new person in the door.

                    When things played out as they did up in Orono last Spring, Coach Barr kind of fell into UMaine's lap, but everyone pretty much knew it was his time to move out and run his own show, regardless of whether Red was going to be extended or not (much less what actually happened). Unfortunately for UNH, we had an AD who was still operating on mediocrity auto-pilot, and would never have thought to make a bold move in (say) mid-April to make a move on Barr before UMaine had time to stop diddling around with their decision, which they actually did leave that door open for way too long, until fate stepped in.

                    That opportunity was out there, and UNH passed. I probably mentioned it a few times last Spring. It's the whole "fortune favors the brave" thing, and while the ship has sailed on Barr, there will be others in the future that are worthy of immediate consideration. IIRC Dan has worked/is still working in college athletics, it would be interesting to get his latest take on all of this ...
                    Sworn Enemy of the Perpetually Offended
                    Montreal Expos Forever ...

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by Chuck Murray View Post

                      Way to "skirt the issue" 'Ref. :-)

                      I don't recall the length of MS7's contract, or whether it's ever been extended. I believe this is his 7th year on the staff, and fourth season in charge. It's possible he is still on his original deal, which I'd guess would have run 6-7 years (the 3 planned assistant seasons, and 3-4 more as HC to allow him to establish his first few recruiting classes), which means the original deal either ended last summer OR will end this summer. IF the latter, I doubt the outgoing AD would have let Souza start a "lame duck" season without a commitment beyond the term, and it'd be tough to justify extending him more than 2 years, based on what he's shown us so far. So my guess is MS7 is not holding a long-term commitment at this point, and a buyout if the new AD chooses to go with someone else shouldn't be more than another year tops. With BS now being on his way out, I don't see UNH allowing any more extensions on his watch. For all we know, BS may have tried to extend MacDonnell already, and when he tried to sell it to Dean Dean, DD (a new one for Darius) suggested retirement was more appropriate for both men instead??

                      See ... where you "skirt the issue" 'Ref, yours truly engages in rampant speculation. WAY more fun!!

                      Now DD seems to be fairly "plugged in" to the Athletics side of things, so (more speculation) I would expect him to be right in the midst of the hiring process for the new AD. With a decision already made on Football (Santos), and with Men's Soccer seemingly in very good hands for the foreseeable future, it's hard not to think DD will be looking for someone to revive Hockey (both sides) and Hoops. I'd guess MS7 is on thin ice, more so than even Bill Herrion, but at some point someone at the top should be demanding that Men's Hoops grow and move back across the street. Women's Soccer HC may also be vulnerable, with these PC times being what they are, and with a man with a nondescript W-L record currently in the job.

                      I would expect DD (and his blue ribbon panel) to question the new AD candidates on not only philosophy and vision issues, but also to plumb their preparedness to bring in a couple of immediate quality new hires in prominent programs, and with Hockey being at the top of that list. In looking at the possibility of a new Men's Hockey HC, I'd want the new AD to already have a short list of candidates he would be looking to consider, whether he is hired at UNH or Fill-In-The-Blank D-1 Hockey University. And if one of those folks on the short list is a prominent respected national candidate - as what happened last offseason (whether unexpectedly or not?) in Orono - I would want that AD candidate to guarantee he would act immediately to get that new person in the door.

                      When things played out as they did up in Orono last Spring, Coach Barr kind of fell into UMaine's lap, but everyone pretty much knew it was his time to move out and run his own show, regardless of whether Red was going to be extended or not (much less what actually happened). Unfortunately for UNH, we had an AD who was still operating on mediocrity auto-pilot, and would never have thought to make a bold move in (say) mid-April to make a move on Barr before UMaine had time to stop diddling around with their decision, which they actually did leave that door open for way too long, until fate stepped in.

                      That opportunity was out there, and UNH passed. I probably mentioned it a few times last Spring. It's the whole "fortune favors the brave" thing, and while the ship has sailed on Barr, there will be others in the future that are worthy of immediate consideration. IIRC Dan has worked/is still working in college athletics, it would be interesting to get his latest take on all of this ...
                      Chuck...glad you had some fun with my post. DD...well that's a new one! Actually...my intention was more around who the new AD would be, not so much, a coaching change? And if a very familiar face to UNH hockey (that's the 'skirting around part) is hired...you can bet there will be no change in the HC dept. I mean, I'd be shocked... In fact, I almost doubt there would be regardless of who is hired, but, not having a reliable crystal ball, who knows? Looked around for coaching contracts but all I could find was salary. Still, even with the AD change, most likely there's another year here at least. I hope things turn around for the program....for everyone's sake. I'm really looking forward to this coming weekend. We'll see if we can bring the scoring touch back to the 'Whitt...
                      Here we go 'Cats!!

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by HockeyRef View Post
                        Chuck...glad you had some fun with my post. DD...well that's a new one! Actually...my intention was more around who the new AD would be, not so much, a coaching change? And if a very familiar face to UNH hockey (that's the 'skirting around part) is hired...you can bet there will be no change in the HC dept. I mean, I'd be shocked... In fact, I almost doubt there would be regardless of who is hired, but, not having a reliable crystal ball, who knows? Looked around for coaching contracts but all I could find was salary. Still, even with the AD change, most likely there's another year here at least. I hope things turn around for the program....for everyone's sake. I'm really looking forward to this coming weekend. We'll see if we can bring the scoring touch back to the 'Whitt...
                        I have to believe if Commish Nigel retained ambitions to be UNH AD, he wouldn't have become Commish Nigel? IF that's the way the job search goes, though, I agree 100%, MS7 ain't going anywhere, anytime soon. We'll see, hopefully sooner than later ...

                        Sworn Enemy of the Perpetually Offended
                        Montreal Expos Forever ...

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by Chuck Murray View Post

                          I have to believe if Commish Nigel retained ambitions to be UNH AD, he wouldn't have become Commish Nigel? IF that's the way the job search goes, though, I agree 100%, MS7 ain't going anywhere, anytime soon. We'll see, hopefully sooner than later ...
                          Commish Nigel oh my. And we wouldn't really call it a "search" now would we....if that was the course of events. (Given the history just saying)
                          Here we go 'Cats!!

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by HockeyRef View Post
                            Commish Nigel oh my. And we wouldn't really call it a "search" now would we....if that was the course of events. (Given the history just saying)
                            Agree with you 100%, that wouldn't be any more of a "search" than Football appointing Ricky Santos as HC, or Hockey bringing in MS7 several summers ago.

                            Given the history of such "searches", none of us should be surprised if Nigel gets the AD nod.

                            Surprised, no; disappointed, yes. Replacing one "yes man" with an even bigger "yes man" IMO.

                            Sworn Enemy of the Perpetually Offended
                            Montreal Expos Forever ...

                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by Chuck Murray View Post

                              (repeating Coach Holt's error, and then some)
                              Chuck, With All Due Respect I have seen you make this statement before, and to use ATW's words "once again you have exaggerated the information to make your own facts. I realize that if you say it you feel it must be true."

                              Coach Holt passed away more than two decades ago and I'm not sure why you insist on disparaging his legacy. But to compare the end of his tenure and its immediate aftermath to the final years of Dick Umile's isn't even comparing apples to oranges. Its more like comparing a hot dog to a warm puppy. Coach Holt announced DURING the 1985-86 season that it would be his last. No three years notice, with a lengthy transition and a farewell tour. Lets take a look at the end of Holt's tenure. '82 season in Frozen Four (third time in six years.) Back in the NCAA's in '83 season (when 8 teams had to earn their way in as opposed to 16.) Winning record in '83-84, a decided step back in '84-85 (first year of Hockey East. Played 45 games?!?!) Was his last season bad? Absolutely. As was the year that followed.

                              I was in WBA for Holt's final games as UNH coach in 1986, I was also there two or three seasons later watching UNH lose a game to BU but feeling really good about what I saw from the younger UNH players. It was clear to anyone with an ounce of hockey IQ that there was talent present and the program was on the upswing. Does anybody feel that way about UNH now, or in the past few years? Were the late 80's a tough time to be a UNH fan? Of course, but the program bounced back fairly quickly especially when you consider all that happened inside and outside of it. The team had single digit wins 86 through 88. However in 1990 was a minute away from the Hockey East finals and two years later was in the HE Title Game and back in the NCAA's.

                              I guess my gripe with drawing comparisons between the end of the two coaching eras is that it parallels a similar, simplistic, mindset among the fanbase that "we rebuilt the program once before so we can just rebuild again." (Typified by the mantra that "all we have to do is bring back the Friends of UNH Hockey and everything will magically return to normal.") Maybe so, but I have serious doubts/concerns. Given the landscape of the world we live in, (more interested in participation than success) college sports in general (the portal, NIL, etc.) and the college hockey universe I just wonder if the UNH Hockey program can return to anything close to the national prominence it once enjoyed. Drawing false equivalencies is, quite honestly lazy, and merely masks the larger issues at hand.

                              Then again, I am responding to someone who recently compared David Fessenden to Ty Conklin.
                              Last edited by Felger; 01-04-2022, 12:13 PM.
                              UNH Hockey: From "Why Not Us' to "Woe is Us"

                              Comment


                              • That's a fair take to a point, Felgie ... but aren't we pretty much saying the same thing? With my " ... and then some" being aimed at how Umile stayed WAY too long, as opposed to Holt staying around a little too long? Your description of the quick downward turn during the last few years of the Holt Era, and his relatively quick decision to step down ... that all happened, and Umile could (and should) have used that as a cautionary tale for himself to learn from. My point has always been that Umile didn't learn. There was/is no intention on my part to disparage the Holt legacy, anything but.

                                A few posts ago, 'Watcher commented about how he accepts coaches "staying too long" most of the time as part of the overall package with a successful coach. I pretty much agree with his take on it. From a common sense standpoint, a coach that has enjoyed success regularly will usually overestimate his ability to maintain or recapture that success, and if there's a downturn, most likely will soldier on for a couple of years to give himself an opportunity to prove himself "wrong". I think that's what Coach Holt (and many others, before and since) ended up doing, and when the program continued to (rapidly) drop, he made the tough decision to call it a day. No shame in that, it happens to even the best, "we're only immortal for a limited time".

                                Coach Umile's arc was different, as you pointed out, and I do agree with you on that. Umile's decline was more like the example of a lobster being dropped into a kettle of lukewarm water, thinking everything was OK, since the last year was just about the same as the one before it, with maybe some gradual slippage over time ... just as the lobster doesn't recognize a slight increase in the water temp as the kettle is gradually brought up to a boil. Of course, there is a point where the lobster figures out (too late!) that he's not getting out of the kettle alive, and even for Coach Umile's slow and gradual descent over the decade or so after his last trip to the FF, he had plenty of time to self-assess and realize he wasn't getting back to the FF.

                                Yet he ignored the example of Coach Holt stepping away with dignity, persisted in his folly for whatever personal reasons he had, and now his legacy is tarnished with posts like so many on here over the last several years, pointing at his stubbornness as the reason why his alma mater's hockey program is stuck in a ditch for the foreseeable future.

                                Furthermore, Coach Holt stepping down allowed new blood to return the program to his past glories much more quickly, while Coach Umile's approach (selfish or narcissistic - you choose) only made his successor's job more difficult. If said successor is without a plan and/or a dynamic recruiting-friendly personality, well then, the task gets even more challenging, doesn't it?

                                Just to be clear, Coach Umile had most of it over Coach Holt when it comes to the measurables (i.e wins, titles, trophies and close calls with the NC at the FF). But Coach Holt had it by a country mile over Coach Umile when it came to the intangibles, which was ultimately acting in the long-term interests of a successful D-1 hockey program in Durham.

                                Hope that clarifies things to your liking, Felgie ...
                                Sworn Enemy of the Perpetually Offended
                                Montreal Expos Forever ...

                                Comment

                                Working...
                                X