Notre Dame Fighting Irish men's ice hockey

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Notre Dame Fighting Irish
Notre Dame Fighting Irish athletic logo
University University of Notre Dame
Conference Big Ten
Head coach Jeff Jackson
13th season, 293–176–54 (.612)
Captain(s) Jake Evans
Alternate captain(s)
Jordan Gross, Luke Ripley, Andrew Oglevie
Arena Compton Family Ice Arena
Capacity: 5,022
Location Notre Dame, Indiana
Colors Blue and Gold[1]
NCAA Tournament Frozen Four
2008, 2011, 2017, 2018
NCAA Tournament appearances
2004, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2013, 2014, 2016, 2017, 2018
Conference Tournament championships
CCHA: 2007, 2009, 2013; Big Ten: 2018
Conference regular season championships

CCHA: 2006–07, 2008–09

Big Ten: 2017–18
Current uniform

The Notre Dame Fighting Irish men's ice hockey team is the college ice hockey team at the University of Notre Dame, competing at the NCAA Division I level and is an associate member of the Big Ten Conference.

Conference history[edit]

Prior to the 2013–14 season, the team competed in the Central Collegiate Hockey Association, and also won its last ever conference championship. In the 2013–2014 season, the team began to play in the Hockey East conference, where it played until the conclusion of the 2016-2017 season. Beginning in the 2017–2018 season, the team joined the Big Ten Conference.[2]

The head coach is Jeff Jackson; the assistant coaches are Paul Pooley, Andy Slaggert, and Kevin Lind.


Ice hockey has existed on and off as both a club and varsity sport at Notre Dame since 1912. The modern era of Notre Dame hockey began in 1968, when the Fighting Irish began to play as a Division I independent. In 1971, the team joined its first conference, the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA). The team continued playing in the WCHA for a decade until moving to the Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA) with the conference's three Michigan schools in 1981.[3]

Notre Dame hockey player in an away uniform (2010).

The Fighting Irish lasted only two years in the new CCHA, when ice hockey was downgraded to a club sport for the 1983–1984 season. During that season, the Fighting Irish played in the Central States Collegiate Hockey League (CSCHL). Notre Dame finished that season second in the CSCHL with a record of 13–2–0.[4] In 1984–1985 Notre Dame Hockey was once again elevated to varsity status with the team playing as a Division I independent. In 1992 Notre Dame rejoined the CCHA. The Irish struggled to remain competitive in the CCHA, but began to improve under head coach Dave Poulin. In 2004, Poulin led the team to its first ever NCAA Tournament. However, the following season was dramatically different. They only won five games, the worst season in school history. Poulin resigned after the season.[3]

Jeff Jackson era[edit]

Jeff Jackson and coaching staff look on as Notre Dame celebrates a goal (2010).

In 2005, Jeff Jackson took over as head coach. Jackson, who had already won two national championships at Lake Superior State University, had an immediate impact at Notre Dame. In his first season with the Irish, the team greatly improved upon the five-win season, boosting its record to 13–19–5.[3] 2007 was even more successful. The Irish achieved their first ever number one ranking in both the and USA Today Polls and their first number one seeding for the NCAA Tournament. The following year, the Irish finished fourth in both the CCHA's regular season and playoffs, and again made the NCAA Tournament. Once there, the Irish went on to beat top-seeded New Hampshire 7–3 and third-seeded Michigan State 3–1 to advance to the Frozen Four for the first time in school history. From there, they defeated first-seeded Michigan in overtime to advance to the national title game, ultimately losing to Boston College 4–1.[5] Notre Dame also became the first four-seed to advance to the national semi-finals, and eventually to the national title game since the new 16-team format was introduced in 2003.[5] In the 2008–2009 season, the Irish added another CCHA regular season title and a CCHA Tournament title, defeating Michigan 5–2 in the title game. Notre Dame advanced to the 2009 NCAA Tournament where the Irish was upset by 16th seeded Bemidji State 1–5.[6]

The following season, Notre Dame finished with a record of 13–17–8 and ended the season after being swept by Ohio State two games to none in the three game opening round series of the CCHA Playoffs.[7][8] The Irish rebounded in the 2010–11 regular season at 23–13–5, and clinched their second trip to the Frozen Four in program history by defeating New Hampshire 2–1 in the Northeast Regional Final. The Fighting Irish faced the East Regional Champion Minnesota-Duluth in the National Semi-finals. The Irish fell to the eventual national champion 3–4.[9]

In October 2011, Notre Dame announced the team will join Hockey East starting in the 2013–14 season, in response to the conference realignment. The university also announced an expanded television broadcast deal with NBC.[10] The Fighting Irish Hockey began the 2011–12 season in the Edmund P. Joyce Center and played the last hockey game at the Joyce Center on October 15, 2011 against Ohio State.[11] The team opened the university's new 5,000-seat Compton Family Ice Arena on October 21, 2011 against Rensselaer.[12] Following the move into the new arena the Irish improved to a 7–3 home record in the new facility that included wins over future Hockey East rivals, Boston University, ranked 3th[clarification needed] in the NCAA, Boston College, ranked 4th, and 8th ranked Western Michigan.[13] On January 4, 2012, former coach and long-time Notre Dame Athletic Department employee, Charles "Lefty" Smith died.[14] Smith coached the team from 1968 to 1987 as the first varsity ice hockey after helping the program transition from club to varsity status. Following his coaching career, he continued at Notre Dame in the athletic department until retiring just three days before his death.[14] The Fighting Irish finished the regular season with an overall record of 17–16–3 and a conference record of 12–13–3. The team defeated Ohio State in the opening round of the 2012 CCHA Tournament, sweeping the Buckeyes in two games by scores of 2–0 and 4–2.[15] In the second round of the CCHA Tournament, the team was defeated by the Michigan Wolverines in two games in a series that saw the first game go into a double overtime.[16] The team was defeated in the first round of the NCAA regional playoffs in 2013 and 2014, both times by the St. Cloud State Huskies.[17]

Head coaches[edit]

All-time coaching records[edit]

As of completion of 2017–18 regular season[18]

Tenure Coach Years Record Pct.
2005–present Jeff Jackson 12 293–176–54 .612
1995–2005 Dave Poulin 10 139–197–50 .425
1987–1995 Ric Schafer 8 112–152–15 .428
1968–1987 Lefty Smith 18 294–314–30 .484
1926–1927 Benjamin Dubois 1 3–7–1 .318
1923–1926 Tom Lieb 3 3–8–3 .321
1919–1923 Paul Castner 4 18–4–0 .818
1912–1913 G.R. Walsh 1 1–2–0 .333
Totals 8 coaches 58 seasons 854–860–153 482


NCAA tournament results[edit]

The Fighting Irish have appeared in the NCAA Tournament 10 times.

Year Seed Round Opponent Results
2004 No. 4 Midwest Regional Semi-final No. 1 Minnesota L 5–2
2007 No. 1 Midwest Regional Semi-final
Midwest Regional Final
No. 4 Alabama-Huntsville
#3 Michigan State
W 3-2
L 2-1
2008 No. 4 West Regional Semi-final
West Regional Final
Frozen Four
National Championship
No. 1 New Hampshire
#3 Michigan State
#1 Michigan
#2 Boston College
W 7-3
W 3-1
W 5-4
L 4-1
2009 No. 1 Midwest Regional Semi-final No. 4 Bemidji State L 5-1
2011 No. 3 Northeast Regional Semi-final
Northeast Regional Final
Frozen Four
No. 2 Merrimack
#4 New Hampshire
#3 Minnesota-Duluth
W 4-3
W 2-1
L 4-3
2013 No. 1 Midwest Regional Semi-final No. 4 St. Cloud State L 5-1
2014 No. 2 West Regional Semi-final No. 3 St. Cloud State L 4-3
2016 No. 3 Midwest Regional Semi-final No. 2 Michigan L 3-2
2017 No. 4 Northeast Regional Semi-final
Northeast Regional Final
Frozen Four
No. 1 Minnesota
#2 UMass-Lowell
#1 Denver
W 3-2
W 3-2
L 6-1
2018 No. 1 East Regional Semi-final
East Regional Final
Frozen Four
National Championship
No. 4 Michigan Tech
#2 Providence
#2 Michigan
No. 3 Minnesota-Duluth
W 4-3
W 2-1
W 4-3
L 2-1


Current roster[edit]

As of September 26, 2017.[19]

No. S/P/C Player Class Pos Height Weight DoB Hometown Previous team NHL rights
1 Michigan Dylan St. Cyr Freshman G 5' 9" (1.75 m) 170 lb (77 kg) 1999-05-23 Northville, Michigan USNTDP (USHL)
2 Minnesota Tony Bretzman Senior D 5' 11" (1.8 m) 175 lb (79 kg) 1994-11-10 Mendota Heights, Minnesota Langley (BCHL)
3 Minnesota Jordan Gross (A) Senior D 5' 10" (1.78 m) 190 lb (86 kg) 1995-05-09 Maple Grove, Minnesota Green Bay (USHL)
4 New York (state) Dennis Gilbert Junior D 6' 2" (1.88 m) 220 lb (100 kg) 1996-10-30 Buffalo, New York Chicago (USHL) CHI, 91st overall 2015
5 Minnesota Matt Hellickson Freshman D 6' 0" (1.83 m) 181 lb (82 kg) 1998-03-21 Rogers, Minnesota Sioux City (USHL) NJD, 214th overall 2017
6 Illinois Tory Dello Sophomore D 6' 0" (1.83 m) 190 lb (86 kg) 1997-02-14 Crystal Lake, Illinois Tri-City (USHL)
8 New Hampshire Matt Steeves Freshman F 6' 0" (1.83 m) 200 lb (91 kg) 1997-10-04 Bedford, New Hampshire Muskegon (USHL)
9 Michigan Dawson Cook Senior F 6' 2" (1.88 m) 215 lb (98 kg) 1995-06-15 Cadillac, Michigan Green Bay (USHL)
11 Massachusetts Cal Burke Sophomore F 5' 10" (1.78 m) 184 lb (83 kg) 1997-03-19 Boxborough, Massachusetts Cedar Rapids (USHL)
12 Sweden Felix Holmberg Sophomore F 5' 10" (1.78 m) 178 lb (81 kg) 1996-04-25 Stockholm, Sweden AIK J20 (J20 SuperElit)
13 Michigan Colin Theisen Freshman F 6' 0" (1.83 m) 188 lb (85 kg) 1997-04-24 Monroe, Michigan Dubuque (USHL)
14 Germany Max Eisenmenger Freshman F 6' 3" (1.91 m) 190 lb (86 kg) 1998-08-21 Münster, Germany Djurgården J20 (J20 SuperElit)
15 California Andrew Oglevie (A) Junior F 5' 10" (1.78 m) 180 lb (82 kg) 1995-02-16 Fullerton, California Cedar Rapids (USHL)
17 Illinois Pierce Crawford Freshman F 5' 9" (1.75 m) 190 lb (86 kg) 1997-06-23 Park Ridge, Illinois Youngstown (USHL)
18 Ontario Jake Evans (C) Senior F 6' 1" (1.85 m) 190 lb (86 kg) 1996-06-02 Toronto, Ontario St. Michael's (OJHL) MTL, 207th overall 2014
19 Nova Scotia Mike O'Leary Sophomore F 6' 1" (1.85 m) 195 lb (88 kg) 1998-01-01 Halifax, Nova Scotia Dubuque (USHL)
20 Illinois Justin Wade Senior D 6' 1" (1.85 m) 220 lb (100 kg) 1994-04-13 Aurora, Illinois Cedar Rapids (USHL)
21 New York (state) Joe Wegwerth Junior F 6' 3" (1.91 m) 225 lb (102 kg) 1996-06-16 Brewster, New York Cedar Rapids (USHL) FLA, 92nd overall 2014
22 Florida Andrew Peeke Sophomore D 6' 2" (1.88 m) 208 lb (94 kg) 1998-03-17 Parkland, Florida Green Bay (USHL) CBJ, 34th overall 2016
23 Wisconsin Luke Novak Sophomore F 6' 0" (1.83 m) 187 lb (85 kg) 1995-02-27 Waukesha, Wisconsin Jersey (USPHL)
24 British Columbia Luke Ripley (A) Senior D 6' 5" (1.96 m) 200 lb (91 kg) 1994-06-14 Kitimat, British Columbia Powell River (BCHL)
25 Minnesota Dylan Malmquist Junior F 5' 11" (1.8 m) 181 lb (82 kg) 1996-08-18 Edina, Minnesota Edina (USHS–MN)
26 Ontario Cam Morrison Sophomore F 6' 3" (1.91 m) 215 lb (98 kg) 1998-08-27 Aurora, Ontario Youngstown (USHL) COL, 40th overall 2016
27 Illinois Bobby Nardella Junior D 5' 9" (1.75 m) 178 lb (81 kg) 1996-04-22 Rosemont, Illinois Tri-City (USHL)
28 Illinois Jack Jenkins Junior F 5' 11" (1.8 m) 192 lb (87 kg) 1995-07-11 Lake Bluff, Illinois Fargo (USHL)
29 Minnesota Bo Brauer Senior F 6' 3" (1.91 m) 210 lb (95 kg) 1995-04-20 Edina, Minnesota Nanaimo (BCHL)
32 Colorado Cale Morris Sophomore G 6' 1" (1.85 m) 190 lb (86 kg) 1996-05-22 Larkspur, Colorado Waterloo (USHL)
33 New Jersey Nick Sanford Freshman G 6' 1" (1.85 m) 180 lb (82 kg) 1996-12-15 Morristown, New Jersey Boston Jr. Bruins (USPHL)

Notable alumni[edit]

Over 100 Fighting Irish alumni have gone on to play professional ice hockey, including a number of current and former NHL and WHA players.[20]

Team captains[edit]

Compton Family Ice Arena[edit]

In February 2009, The University of Notre Dame announced it will begin construction on a new, freestanding, on-campus ice arena designed to meet the needs of both the Irish hockey team and the local community.[21] Construction on the 5,022-seat arena began on March 15, 2010 with the venue opening in the Fall of 2011.[22] The arena held its first Notre Dame hockey game on October 21, 2011 when a sellout crowd saw Notre Dame defeat Rensselaer 5–2.[23]

The new ice arena is located south of the Joyce Center, just north of Edison Road, and just west of where the new Irish track and field facility is being constructed. The majority of the general public arena seating is of the chair-back variety with bleacher seating in the student section.[24] The Compton Family Center replaced the rink inside the Edmund P. Joyce Center. During the time that the Irish played at the Joyce Center, the facility was the second smallest home rink in the CCHA with a hockey capacity of 2,857. All seats were benchers, and most of the seating consists of temporary bleachers. In 2007, the Irish compiled an impressive 14–2–2 home record at the Joyce Center.


  1. ^ Notre Dame Logo Sheet (PDF). Retrieved June 22, 2016. 
  2. ^ 22, Jim Connelly • Senior Writer • March; 2016. "Sources: Notre Dame leaving Hockey East for Big Ten in 2017". Retrieved 2016-03-23. 
  3. ^ a b c "Notre Dame Men's Hockey: Team History". US Colleg Hockey Online. 1996–2010. Retrieved December 12, 2010. 
  4. ^ "Year-by-year Standings". Central States Collegiate Hockey League. Retrieved August 4, 2011. 
  5. ^ a b AP Staff (March 31, 2008). "Notre Dame books ticket to first frozen four". USA Today. Retrieved March 31, 2008. 
  6. ^ Staff (March 28, 2009). "Bemidji State stuns top-seeded Notre Dame; Cornell nips Northeastern". National Hockey League. Retrieved August 4, 2011. 
  7. ^ "Notre Dame Fighting Irish Men's Hockey 2009–2010 Team Statistics". U.S. College Hockey Online. 2010. Retrieved August 4, 2011. 
  8. ^ Boggs, Justin J. (March 6, 2010). "Carlson Stops 47 as Ohio State Sweeps Notre Dame". U.S. College Hockey Online. Retrieved August 4, 2011. 
  9. ^ Gardiner, Andy (April 7, 2011). "Minnesota-Duluth tops Notre Dame for spot in title game". USA Today. Retrieved August 4, 2011. 
  10. ^ AP Staff (October 6, 2011). "Notre Dame joining Hockey East". ESPN. Retrieved April 30, 2012. 
  11. ^ Di Carlo, Angelo (October 16, 2011). "Irish Icers fall in final hockey game ever at the Joyce Center". WNDU-TV. Retrieved April 30, 2012. 
  12. ^ Meenan, Jim (October 20, 2011). "Notre Dame hockey: Opening night finally arrives". Retrieved April 30, 2012. 
  13. ^ DeFranks, Matthew (January 19, 2012). "A brand new barn". The Observer. Retrieved April 30, 2012. 
  14. ^ a b Di Carlo, Angelo (January 4, 2012). "Irish hockey legend "Lefty" Smith passes away at age 81". WNDU-TV. Retrieved April 30, 2012. 
  15. ^ Gans, Sam (March 4, 2012). "Hockey: Irish sweep Ohio State, advance in playoffs". The Observer. Retrieved April 30, 2012. 
  16. ^ Lacy, Eric (March 10, 2012). "Michigan hockey sweeps Notre Dame, advances to CCHA semi-finals". The Detroit News. Retrieved April 30, 2012. 
  17. ^ [1]
  18. ^
  19. ^ [2]
  20. ^ "Alumni Report". Internet Hockey Database. 2008. Retrieved December 12, 2010. 
  21. ^ "Hockey Arena Construction" (PDF). University of Notre Dame. 2010. Archived from the original (PDF) on October 14, 2012. Retrieved August 4, 2011. 
  22. ^ Masoud, Chris (April 19, 2010). "Hockey: New arena to boost program". The Observer. Retrieved August 4, 2011. 
  23. ^ Meenan, Jim (October 22, 2011). "Notre Dame hockey: Irish win first game in Compton Family Ice Arena". South Bend Tribune. Retrieved November 26, 2011. 
  24. ^ "Notre Dame to Construct New Ice Arena on Campus". Retrieved February 12, 2009. 

External links[edit]