Michigan Wolverines men's ice hockey

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Michigan Wolverines
Michigan Wolverines athletic logo
University University of Michigan
Conference Big Ten
Head coach Mel Pearson
1st season
Captain(s) Nolan De Jong
Alex Kile
Alternate captain(s) Kevin Lohan
Arena Yost Ice Arena
Capacity: 6,600[1]
Surface: 200' x 85'
Location Ann Arbor, Michigan
Colors Maize and Blue[2]
Fight song The Victors
NCAA Tournament championships
1948, 1951, 1952, 1953, 1955, 1956, 1964, 1996, 1998[3]
NCAA Tournament Frozen Four
1948, 1949, 1950, 1951, 1952, 1953, 1954, 1955, 1956, 1957, 1962, 1964, 1977, 1992, 1993, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2008, 2011
NCAA Tournament appearances
1948, 1949, 1950, 1951, 1952, 1953, 1954, 1955, 1956, 1957, 1962, 1964, 1977, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2016
Conference Tournament championships
1994, 1996, 1997, 1999, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2008, 2010, 2016
Conference regular season championships
1953, 1956, 1964, 1992, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2002, 2004, 2005, 2008, 2011[4]
Current uniform

The Michigan Wolverines men's ice hockey team is the college ice hockey team that represents the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Earning varsity status in 1922, the program has completed its 91st season. Until the 2012–13 season, the school's team competed in the Central Collegiate Hockey Association, although it competed in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association between 1959 and 1981.[3] Since the 2013–14 season, the Wolverines have competed in the Big Ten, which began sponsoring hockey. From 1991–2012, the team played in 22 consecutive NCAA Men's Division I Ice Hockey Tournaments; this is an NCAA record.[3] The Wolverines have won an NCAA-record nine Division I NCAA Men's Ice Hockey Championships,[3] seven of which came during a 17-year stretch between 1948 and 1964. Two more championships were won under head coach Red Berenson in 1996 and 1998.[3]

Michigan has had many successes as a program including a record-setting number of championships, total championship tournament appearances, and consecutive tournament appearances. In 2010, Michigan hosted a Guinness verified world record crowd in excess of 113,000 in an event known as The Big Chill. Players from the program have earned numerous honors, professional championships, international championships, individual statistical championships, team and individual records. The team is currently led by Mel Pearson, in his first year as head coach although a former assistant to Berenson; Berenson for nearly fifty years has continued to hold the school single-season goal scoring record, and was the second player in the program's history to win the Stanley Cup. The program has dozens of National Hockey League alumni and over twenty current players. They currently hold the record for the most titles at the Great Lakes Invitational with 17 titles respectively. Their traditional rival is Michigan State and the teams have played an annual game at the Joe Louis Arena since 1990.

Team history[edit]

Early history[edit]

1920 "Informal Varsity Hockey Team"

In 1920, "as a result of the interest in the interclass and interfraternity leagues, in which twenty-two teams took part," an informal Michigan hockey team was organized to represent the university.[5][6] Mr. Le Mieux of the Engineering faculty, had played 12 years of professional hockey and offered his services as coach.[7][8] Because of the difficulty in securing intercollegiate competition, the 1920 team played a six-game schedule against an Ann Arbor team, Assumption College, and four games against teams from the Detroit Hockey League. The 1920 Michigan team, with Russell Barkell as the team's high scorer, compiled a 6–0 record and outscored opponents 27 to 7.[5][6] In February 1920, The Michigan Alumnus noted: "There is a big sentiment for a Varsity hockey team. The difficulties are the lack of a University rink, and the arranging of suitable competition."[9] In April 1920, The Michigan Chimes wrote:

"The record of our informal hockey team which was organized at the close of the January interclass sportsw, has been truly remarkable. With only two weeks of practice, it has defeated the three strongest Detroit teams. ... Unfortunately this one team of ours which seems able to win, and shows possibilities of great development has not as yet been recognized as a regular team."[10]

Later, The Michigan Chimes published a lengthy article pleading for the administration to recognize hockey as a varsity sport: "Agitation was started for the recognition of hockey as a varsity sport. What spell, what charm there is in that single appellation bestowed by custom on football, baseball, track, and recently basketball! What obstacles must be overcome, what sacrifices made, to attain the heights!"[7]

With the success of the informal Michigan hockey team in 1920, Michigan moved forward with the development of the hockey team. According to Wilfred Byron Shaw's four-volume history of the University of Michigan, "Hockey also had its beginning in 1921, with Richard Barss as Coach (1921–26). Although officially not on the Western Conference athletic program, hockey provided a number of Big Ten teams with competition."[11] The 1921 season saw the development of intercollegiate hockey at Michigan, Wisconsin and Minnesota.[12][13] In January 1921, Michigan and Wisconsin scheduled four games to be played on consecutive weekends from February 18 to 26, 1921.[14] The 1921 team began the season with two games against the Michigan College of Mines at Houghton, Michigan. Michigan lost the first game 3–0 but won the second game 4–3. Russell Barkell, the first standout hockey player at Michigan, was the Michigan star in both games against the College of Mines.[15] However, the remainder of the season, including the planned four-game series with Wisconsin, was cancelled due to warm weather. The Michigan Alumnus reported in March 1921: "The warmth of the present winter has made necessary the cancelling of all scheduled hockey games. The informal team had started off well, but lack of ice made the development of a really powerful team impossible."[16]

In December 1921, The Michigan Alumnus wrote: "There will be much pushing of the puck this year. The Athletic Association hopes to have more money to spend for Michigan skaters, and plans to encourage hockey more than ever before. We used to spend our time 'doing the grapevine,' but only because we were not fast enough for shinny. More power to the shinny artists."[17]

Over the course of a 10-game schedule, Michigan's 1922 squad finished with a record of 5–5. The team opened the 1922 season with a 5–1 victory over Michigan Agricultural College (now known as Michigan State University) in the first hockey match between the rival schools.[18] They followed with a 3–2 overtime victory over the Detroit Rayls on January 16, 1922. Later that month, the Notre Dame hockey team defeated Michigan 3–2 in overtime, marking the first defeat for the Michigan hockey team on its home rink in three years.[19] The team traveled to Houghton for night games against the Michigan School of Mines, losing both games by scores of 2–1 and 5–2.[20] The Wolverines beat the School of Mines 4–1 in a rematch in Ann Arbor. In the season's seventh game, Michigan defeated Wisconsin 6–3 in the first match between Western Conference hockey teams.[18] Following another loss to Notre Dame (7–2), Michigan defeated Wisconsin for the second time by a score of 5–1; Barkell scored three goals against Wisconsin and was the high scorer in the game.[21] The season ended with a 5–2 victory over the Windsor Monarchs.[18]

In March 1922, The Michigan Alumnus reported that athletic director Fielding H. Yost had stated that recognition of hockey as a minor sport was very probable in 1923. Yost expressed the view that the sport should be either intramural or intercollegiate and not an informal sport. The same article noted that Michigan's hockey team had already met Notre Dame, Michigan School of Mines, Michigan Agricultural College and many Detroit teams.[22]

According to Bacon's history of the Michigan hockey program, the first "official" college hockey game played west of the Alleghenies was a game between Michigan and Wisconsin, played on January 12, 1923, in Ann Arbor, Michigan. The game went into overtime with Michigan prevailing by a score of 2–1. The Capital Times in Madison reported on the game as follows: "Michigan counted the first point, when Kahn, by clever work, rushed the ball through the Badger defense for a goal. In the second period Blodgett for Wisconsin tied the score. The first five-minute period of overtime found both teams battling desperately. The second five minutes was a repetition. The Wolverines seemed held on from the side, slipped the puck through the goal for the winning point."[23] In another account, the Madison newspaper wrote that, "after outplaying Michigan all the way through, Wisconsin lost in the second overtime period when a lucky shot went for a goal."[24] Michigan again defeated Wisconsin 1–0 in the second game of the season, played the following day, January 13, 1923.[24]

Barss coached the Michigan Wolverines men's ice hockey team from 1922 to 1927. In five years as the head coach, the Michigan hockey team compiled a record of 26–21–4.[25]

As the popularity of college hockey grew in the early 1920s, other colleges looked to Barss' pupils for coaching candidates. In January 1923, former Michigan hockey star Russell Barkell was hired as the coach of the hockey team at Williams College.[26]

In February 1924, after a 3–0 victory by Michigan over Wisconsin, a Madison newspaper praised the defensive play of the Barss-coached Wolverines: "With an almost air-tight defense and a definite scoring attack the Michigan hockey team defeated the Badger six by a score of 3 to 0 yesterday afternoon. Wisconsin could not stop Michigan's fast team work and was unable to penetrate their defense to take any close shots at the goal."[27]

Vic Heyliger era[edit]

From 1947–48 through 1956–57, when Vic Heyliger retired, the Michigan hockey team had won 195 games, lost only 41, and tied 11. The Wolverines' record got them 10 consecutive invitations to the Frozen Four, where they came home with the national title six times-records that have never been in danger of being broken by any college team a half century later. This also helped shift the locus of power in hockey from the East to the West when it was previously thought to be the other way around. Led by Michigan, the West won 18 of the first 20 NCAA championships, setting the question rather emphatically. The run also ensured the team its place on campus for years to come, filling a hole created by the football and basketball teams' mediocrity during the fifties.

Of Michigan's 53 players who have earned All-American status, almost half (24) played for Heyliger between 1948 and 1957. During that stretch he never had fewer than two players on the All-American team. Four times he had five players so honored, and in 1956 he had a record six players on the squad. In Michigan history, twelve Wolverines have won it twice or more. Heyliger coached nine of them and recruited the tenth, Bob White. No other school has ever amassed and developed such a mother lode of talent in the history of college hockey.

For all of this Heyliger was given the NCAA's Spencer Penrose Award for Coach of the Year, he was inducted into the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame, and he was selected in 1996 by the American Hockey Coaches Association as one of the five best college coaches of the century, and the very best of the first half. In 1980 he became the first hockey coach to be inducted into the University of Michigan's Hall of Honor. Heyliger's severe asthma forced him to leave the team and Ann Arbor in the summer of 1957. His impact on the Michigan program, the NCAA tournament, the WCHA, and college hockey would be hard to overstate.[28]

Al Renfrew era[edit]

Through Heyliger's tenure, athletic director Fritz Crisler had seen the virtue of having a Michigan man head the hockey program. When it came time for Crisler to conduct his second search for a hockey coach, therefore, he sought out Al Renfrew, an affable man who had captained the 1948–49 Wolverine squad and had already been coaching college hockey for six years.

At the end of Renfrew's first season in Grand Forks, Heyliger stepped down from the Michigan job and told Renfrew to put his name in for it. Renfrew wrote Fritz Crisler a letter in March indicating his interest, but Crisler didn't respond for over a month. Renfrew had already concluded he was out of the running when Crisler called to offer him the job. His decision should have been harder than it was. He had built a great team at North Dakota, and the players he recruited won the national title two years after he left, but he was too excited to be back in Ann Arbor.[citation needed]

Renfrew inherited a team that had gone 18–5–2 and finished one victory short of its third consecutive NCAA title in 1956–57—and then Renfrew promptly suffered Michigan's first losing season since World War II. His skaters finished 8–13 in 1957–58, his first year, and 8–13–1 his second. But Renfrew wasn't worried-he knew he had a secret weapon coming in.[citation needed]

From 1958 to 1964, some 14 players made the trek from Regina, Saskatchewan to Ann Arbor, including one Red Berenson. While still in high school, Berenson had already become a highly touted major junior player, one good enough to join the Montreal Canadiens system straight out of high school, but he had other ideas. A serious student, Berenson became aware of the world of American college hockey when Regina Pats high-profile coach Murray Armstrong went south of the border in 1956 to accept the head coaching job at University of Denver. Berenson visited North Dakota in 1958 and was favorably impressed at the caliber of players the former coach, a man named Al Renfrew, had lured to Grand Forks before Ranfrew returned to Michigan the year before. But soon after Berenson's visit to North Dakota, Dale MacDonald, a Saskatchewan native playing for Renfrew at Michigan, told his coach that Berenson was the rare player worth going out of his way to get. Renfrew scraped together enough money to fly the young phenom to Michigan, thereby making him the first hockey player ever to receive a free recruiting trip to Ann Arbor. The extra effort was worth it, for both parties. Once he was on campus, they didn't have to sell him on it. "After I came down on a visit," Berenson confirms, "I came back and told the other guys. "This is where we're going." And just like that, a pipeline of hockey talent was created between Regina and Ann Arbor.[citation needed]

Berenson's decision, at least, came with a price. Frank Selke, the Montreal GM who had drafted Berenson, warned him that if he went to an America college he would never become a pro. Fully aware he might be sacrificing the dream of every Canadian boy to play in the NHL-and for the Montreal Canadiens, no less—Berenson didn't flinch. After sitting out his first year, which the NCAA required of all freshmen at that time, Berenson suited up for his first game on February 5, 1960, against Minnesota. He scored 90 seconds into his first game, assisted on another goal five minutes later and scored a third later in the game. Everyone in the building that night had just seen the future of Michigan hockey, and it looked bright.[citation needed]

Renfrew notched his first winning season and his first league playoff berth in the 1960–61 season. The following season, the Berenson-captained squad didn't lose a game through New Year's, and finished the regular season with a 20–3 mark. As expected, the Wolverines received their first NCAA bid under Renfrew that spring. Michigan was a slight favorite entering the 1962 NCAA Tournament in Utica, New York, but were upset by Clarkson 5–4 in the semifinal. In a life with few regrets, the game against Clarkson ranks near the top for Berenson. "We should've won it," he said. "We were destined to meet Michigan Tech in the finals, but got knocked off by and underdog-Clarkson-back when eastern teams weren't that good. You don't get too many chances to win it all as a player. At the time it doesn't seem so important, but 10 years, 20 years later, you ask yourself: "Why the hell didn't we do that?"[attribution needed] After scoring his school record-tying 43rd goal against St. Lawrence in the consolation game, Berenson caught a ride to Boston, where he played for the Canadiens the next night, making him the first player to jump directly from college to the NHL.[29]

The 1964 squad returned its two leading scorers from the previous season, Gary Butler and Gordon Wilkie, both ex-Pats, who had combined for 79 points in just 24 games the previous season. They played better than expected, combining for a remarkable 135 points in just 29 games-both players finished just shy of Berenson's single-season record of 70 points. Rookie Wilf Martin added an unexpected 58 points. Mel Wakabayashi, all 5'5" of him, join the team in January 1964, centering Rob Coristine and Bob Ferguson on the third line. The trio added 107 points, which would have made them the top-scoring line the previous season. Added it all up and you had the first Michigan team to score more than 200 goals in a season, averaging a prolific 7.5 goals per game. Thanks largely to the scoring streak, this unheralded but determined bunch beat every opponent at least once en route to a 24–2–1 record, winning more games than any team in Michigan history. At the 1964 Frozen Four, Denver took care of Rensselaer, 4–1, while Michigan survived a close game with Providence, 3–2. For the final game, 7,000 Pioneer fans packed the Denver Arena to watch their team battle for its fourth NCAA title in seven years. The underdog Wolverines beat Denver, 6–3, in the Bulldogs' backyard, winning their seventh national championship. It was the last hurrah for the Regina regiment, a group of some 14 players who came to Ann Arbor between 1958 and 1964. "This is the place", Berenson told them, and they followed.[30]

Transition to Yost and the CCHA[edit]

Renfrew retired as head coach following the 1972-73 season. He was succeeded by Dan Farrell, a former assistant coach at Michigan Tech (where Renfrew had previously coached). Farrell's first season was also the team's first at their new home in the converted Fielding H. Yost Field House, now known as Yost Ice Arena. Farrell guided the Wolverines to the 1977 NCAA championship game at Olympia Stadium, losing to the Wisconsin Badgers by a score of 6-5. Farrell's teams would be unable to duplicate that success, and he stepped down at the end of the 1979-80 season.

Wilf Martin returned to his alma mater to serve as head coach, but only lasted two games into the 1980-81 season before he was forced to step down for health reasons. Assistant coach John Giordano took over for the rest of the season. In 1981, Giordano's Wolverines moved from the WCHA to the CCHA, joining fellow Big Ten rival schools Michigan State (which also jumped from the WCHA) and Ohio State (a founding member of the CCHA), as well as football rival Notre Dame. It was hoped that the change in conferences would help the Wolverines compete, but Michigan followed up a first-round conference tournament loss to the Irish with back-to-back ninth-place finishes, leading Giordano to step down after four seasons.

Red Berenson era[edit]

After a lengthy playing career in the NHL and a stint as head coach of the St. Louis Blues (where he won the Jack Adams Award) and a term as an assistant to Scotty Bowman in Buffalo, Red Berenson returned to his alma mater in 1984 to take over the reins. Berenson's teams faced a stiff rival in Ron Mason's Spartans, who dominated the CCHA in the mid-eighties and won the 1986 NCAA championship. Prior to the 1989 CCHA playoffs, Berenson had the Wolverines adopted the winged helmet design associated with the football team.

Berenson led the Wolverines to 22 consecutive NCAA tournament appearances, including 11 Frozen Four appearances and three appearances in the title game, winning the championship in 1996 and 1998. The streak was broken in the final season of the CCHA, when the team failed to get an invite after losing the conference championship to Notre Dame. Berenson's final trip to the NCAA tournament came in 2016, which was also his last conference championship (this time in the Big Ten). Berenson announced his retirement on April 10, 2017.

Mel Pearson era[edit]

On April 24, 2017, Mel Pearson was announced as the new head coach at the University of Michigan.


Conference affiliation since 1951[31]

NCAA National championships[edit]

Year Champion Score Runner-up City Arena Ref.
1948 Michigan 8–4 Dartmouth Colorado Springs, CO Broadmoor Arena [32]
1951 Michigan 7–1 Brown Colorado Springs, CO Broadmoor Arena [33]
1952 Michigan 4–1 Colorado College Colorado Springs, CO Broadmoor Arena [34]
1953 Michigan 7–3 Minnesota Colorado Springs, CO Broadmoor Arena [35]
1955 Michigan 5–3 Colorado College Colorado Springs, CO Broadmoor Arena [36]
1956 Michigan 7–5 Michigan Tech Colorado Springs, CO Broadmoor Arena [37]
1964 Michigan 6–3 Denver Denver, CO University of Denver Arena [38]
1996 Michigan 3–2 Colorado College Cincinnati, OH Riverfront Coliseum [39]
1998 Michigan 3–2 Boston College Boston, MA Fleet Center [40]

Conference Regular-Season Championships[edit]

Season Conference Record Head Coach
1952–53 WCHA 12–4–0 Vic Heyliger
1955–56 WCHA 15–2–1 Vic Heyliger
1963–64 WCHA 12–2–0 Al Renfrew
1991–92 CCHA 22–7–3 Red Berenson
1993–94 CCHA 24–5–1 Red Berenson
1994–95 CCHA 22–4–1 Red Berenson
1995–96 CCHA 22–6–2 Red Berenson
1996–97 CCHA 21–3–3 Red Berenson
1999-00 CCHA 19–6–3 Red Berenson
2001–02 CCHA 19–5–4 Red Berenson
2003–04 CCHA 18–8–2 Red Berenson
2004–05 CCHA 23–3–2 Red Berenson
2007–08 CCHA 20–4–4 Red Berenson
2010–11 CCHA 20–7–1 Red Berenson

Conference Tournament championships[edit]

Tournament Conference Championship Game Opponent Score Location Head Coach
1994 CCHA Lake Superior State 3–0 Joe Louis Arena Detroit, MI Red Berenson
1996 CCHA Lake Superior State 4–3 Joe Louis Arena Detroit, MI Red Berenson
1997 CCHA Michigan State 3–1 Joe Louis Arena Detroit, MI Red Berenson
1999 CCHA Northern Michigan 5–1 Joe Louis Arena Detroit, MI Red Berenson
2002 CCHA Michigan State 3–2 Joe Louis Arena Detroit, MI Red Berenson
2003 CCHA Ferris State 5–3 Joe Louis Arena Detroit, MI Red Berenson
2005 CCHA Ohio State 4–2 Joe Louis Arena Detroit, MI Red Berenson
2008 CCHA Miami University 2–1 Joe Louis Arena Detroit, MI Red Berenson
2010 CCHA Northern Michigan 2–1 Joe Louis Arena Detroit, MI Red Berenson
2016 Big Ten Minnesota 5–3 Xcel Energy Center Saint Paul, MN Red Berenson

Season-by-season results[edit]

This is a partial list. The NCAA began sponsoring hockey as a championship sport in 1947–48.

Season Coach Overall Conference Standing Postseason
Vic Heyliger (Independent) (1947–48–1950–51)
1947–48 Vic Heyliger 20–2–1 NCAA Champion
1948–49 Vic Heyliger 20–2–3 NCAA Third Place
1949–50 Vic Heyliger 23–4–0 NCAA Third Place
1950–51 Vic Heyliger 22–4–1 NCAA Champion
Vic Heyliger (MCHL) (1951–52–1952–53)
1951–52 Vic Heyliger 22–4–0 9–3–0 T-2nd NCAA Champion
1952–53 Vic Heyliger 17–7–0 12–4–0 T-1st NCAA Champion
Vic Heyliger (WIHL) (1953–54–1957–58)
1953–54 Vic Heyliger 15–6–2 12–3–1 2nd NCAA Third Place
1954–55 Vic Heyliger 18–5–1 13–5–0 2nd NCAA Champion
1955–56 Vic Heyliger 20–2–1 15–2–1 1st NCAA Champion
1956–57 Vic Heyliger 20–2–1 13–4–1 2nd NCAA Finalist
Vic Heyliger: 195–41–11* -
Al Renfrew (WIHL) (1957–58–1957–58)
1957–58 Al Renfrew 8–13–0 7–11–0 6th
Al Renfrew (Big Ten) (1958–59–1958–59)
1958–59 Al Renfrew 8–13–1 2–6–0 3rd
Al Renfrew (WCHA / Big Ten) (1959–60–1972–73)
1959–60 Al Renfrew 12–12–0 7–11–0 5th / 2nd
1960–61 Al Renfrew 16–10–2 15–8–1 3rd / 1st
1961–62 Al Renfrew 22–5–0 15–3–0 2nd / 1st NCAA Third Place
1962–63 Al Renfrew 7–14–3 3–14–3 7th / 3rd
1963–64 Al Renfrew 24–4–1 12–2–0 1st / 1st NCAA Champion
1964–65 Al Renfrew 13–12–1 7–11–0 5th / 3rd
1965–66 Al Renfrew 14–14–0 9–9–0 5th / 3rd
1966–67 Al Renfrew 19–7–2 11–6–1 4th / 2nd
1967–68 Al Renfrew 18–9–0 11–7–0 4th / 1st
1968–69 Al Renfrew 16–12–0 10–8–0 4th / 1st
1969–70 Al Renfrew 14–16–0 11–13–0 6th / 3rd
1970–71 Al Renfrew 9–21–0 5–17–0 9th / 4th
1971–72 Al Renfrew 16–18–0 12–16–0 6th / 2nd
1972–73 Al Renfrew 6–27–1 4–25–1 10th / 4th
Al Renfrew: 222–207–11 -
Dan Farrell (WCHA / Big Ten) (1973–74–1979–80)
1973–74 Dan Farrell 18–17–1 12–15–1 7th / 4th
1974–75 Dan Farrell 22–17–1 17–15–0 6th / 2nd
1975–76 Dan Farrell 21–18–0 17–15–0 4th / 2nd
1976–77 Dan Farrell 28–17–0 20–12–0 3rd / 2nd NCAA Finalist
1977–78 Dan Farrell 15–20–1 12–19–1 T-7th / 2nd
1978–79 Dan Farrell 8–27–1 6–25–1 10th / 3rd
1979–80 Dan Farrell 23–13–2 13–11–2 4th / 2nd
Dan Farrell: 135–129–6 -
Wilf Martin (WCHA / Big Ten) (1980–1980)
1980 Wilf Martin 1–1–0 0–0–0
Wilf Martin: 1–1–0 -
John Giordano (WCHA / Big Ten) (1980–81–present)
1980–81 John Giordano 22–16–0 15–13–0 5th / 3rd
John Giordano (CCHA) (1981–82–1983–84)
1981–82 John Giordano 18–15–5 14–12–4 5th
1982–83 John Giordano 14–22–0 11–21–0 9th
1983–84 John Giordano 14–22–1 11–18–1 9th
John Giordano: 68–75–6 -
Red Berenson (CCHA) (1984–85–2012-13)
1984–85 Red Berenson 13–26–1 11–20–1 T-7th
1985–86 Red Berenson 12–26–0 10–22–0 8th
1986–87 Red Berenson 14–25–1 11–20–1 7th
1987–88 Red Berenson 22–19–0 17–15–0 5th
1988–89 Red Berenson 22–15–4 17–11–4 4th
1989–90 Red Berenson 24–12–6 16–11–5 4th
1990–91 Red Berenson 34–10–3 24–5–3 2nd NCAA Quarterfinalist
1991–92 Red Berenson 32–9–3 22–7–3 1st NCAA Frozen Four
1992–93 Red Berenson 30–7–3 23–5–2 2nd NCAA Frozen Four
1993–94 Red Berenson 33–7–1 24–5–1 1st NCAA Quarterfinalist
1994–95 Red Berenson 30–8–1 22–4–1 1st NCAA Frozen Four
1995–96 Red Berenson 34–7–2 22–6–2 T-1st NCAA Champion
1996–97 Red Berenson 35–4–4 21–3–3 1st NCAA Frozen Four
1997–98 Red Berenson 34–11–1 22–7–1 2nd NCAA Champion
1998–99 Red Berenson 25–11–6 17–8–5 2nd NCAA Quarterfinalist
1999–00 Red Berenson 27–10–4 19–6–3 1st NCAA Quarterfinalist
2000–01 Red Berenson 27–13–5 16–9–3 T-2nd NCAA Frozen Four
2001–02 Red Berenson 28–11–5 19–5–4 1st NCAA Frozen Four
2002–03 Red Berenson 30–10–3 18–7–3 2nd NCAA Frozen Four
2003–04 Red Berenson 27–14–2 18–8–2 1st NCAA Quarterfinalist
2004–05 Red Berenson 31–8–3 23–3–2 1st NCAA Quarterfinalist
2005–06 Red Berenson 21–15–5 13–10–5 3rd NCAA First Round
2006–07 Red Berenson 26–14–1 18–9–1 2nd NCAA First Round
2007–08 Red Berenson 33–6–4 20–4–4 1st NCAA Frozen Four
2008–09 Red Berenson 29–12–0 20–8–0 2nd NCAA First Round
2009–10 Red Berenson 26–18–1 14–13–1 7th NCAA Quarterfinalist
2010–11 Red Berenson 29–11–4 20–7–1 1st NCAA Finalist
2011–12 Red Berenson 24–13–4 15–9–4 2nd NCAA First Round
2012–13 Red Berenson 18–19–3 9–15–3 7th
Red Berenson (Big Ten [31]) (2013-14–2017)
2013–14 Red Berenson 18–13–4 10–8–2 3rd
2014–15 Red Berenson 22–15–0 12–8–0 3rd
2015–16 Red Berenson 25–8–5 12–5–3 2nd NCAA Quarterfinalist
2016–17 Red Berenson 13–19–3 6–12–2 5th
Red Berenson: 848–426–92
Mel Pearson (Big Ten [31]) (2017–Present)
2017–18 Mel Pearson
Mel Pearson:
Total: 1,669–1,067–153

      National champion         Postseason invitational champion  
      Conference regular season champion         Conference regular season and conference tournament champion
      Division regular season champion       Division regular season and conference tournament champion
      Conference tournament champion

* Record does not include Vic Heyliger's 33–20–2 record from 1944–47.

Outdoor games[edit]

Game Date Matchup Result Attendance Site Location
The Cold War October 6, 2001 No. 5 Michigan at No. 1 Michigan State T 3–3 74,554 Spartan Stadium East Lansing, MI
Camp Randall Hockey Classic February 6, 2010 No. 19 Michigan at No. 3 Wisconsin L 2–3 55,031 Camp Randall Stadium Madison, WI
The Big Chill at the Big House December 11, 2010 No. 12 Michigan vs Michigan State W 5–0 113,411 Michigan Stadium Ann Arbor, MI
Frozen Diamond Faceoff January 15, 2012 No. 15 Michigan at No. 2 Ohio State W 4–1 25,831 Progressive Field Cleveland, OH
Great Lakes Invitational December 27, 2013 No. 3 Michigan vs. Western Michigan L 2–3 (OT) 25,449 Comerica Park Detroit, MI
Great Lakes Invitational December 28, 2013 No. 3 Michigan vs. Michigan State L 0–3 26,052 Comerica Park Detroit, MI
Hockey City Classic February 7, 2015 No. 14 Michigan vs. Michigan State W 4–1 22,751 Soldier Field Chicago, IL


Interior of Yost Ice Arena

Built in 1923 as a field house, the facility is named in honor of Michigan's legendary football coach and athletic director, Fielding H. Yost. For many years, it housed the Michigan basketball team, until they relocated to the larger Crisler Arena in 1967. It also housed the track teams in the 1950s. In 1973, it was converted into an ice arena, and the Michigan hockey team has used it ever since. The University of Michigan's Senior and Collegiate synchronized skating and freestyle teams also practice at Yost. In addition, local high school teams, recreational leagues (AAAHA) and the university's intramural hockey league call it home.

The arena is one of the most unusual in college hockey not only because it retains the charm of an old barn, but also offers the amenities of the most modern of arenas. It has served as home of Michigan hockey since 1973–74, and over 3 million fans have helped make it one of the most exciting and intimidating venues in college hockey. The atmosphere has helped the Wolverines on the ice significantly, accumulating more than 450 victories at home.[41]

Yost Ice Arena has hosted NCAA Ice Hockey Tournament games five times in its history, most recently in 2003.


Current roster[edit]

As of August 11, 2017.[42]

# S/P/C Player Class Pos Height Weight DoB Hometown Previous team NHL rights
2 Missouri Martin, LukeLuke Martin Sophomore D 6' 3" (1.91 m) 215 lb (98 kg) 1998-09-20 St. Louis, Missouri USNTDP (USHL) CAR, 52nd overall 2017
4 Michigan Martin, CutlerCutler Martin Senior D 6' 0" (1.83 m) 220 lb (100 kg) 1994-07-20 East Lansing, Michigan Tri-City (USHL)
5 New York (state) Luce, GriffinGriffin Luce (A) Sophomore D 6' 3" (1.91 m) 214 lb (97 kg) 1998-03-10 Williamsville, New York USNTDP (USHL)
6 Illinois Piazza, SamSam Piazza (A) Senior D 6' 0" (1.83 m) 196 lb (89 kg) 1994-01-27 Darien, Illinois Wichita Falls (NAHL)
8 Minnesota Becker, JackJack Becker Freshman F 6' 3" (1.91 m) 195 lb (88 kg) 1997-06-24 Dellwood, Minnesota Sioux Falls (USHL) BOS, 195th overall 2015
9 Michigan Norris, JoshJosh Norris Freshman F 6' 1" (1.85 m) 195 lb (88 kg) 1999-05-05 Oxford, Michigan USNTDP (USHL) SJS, 19th overall 2017
10 Michigan Lockwood, WillWill Lockwood Sophomore F 5' 11" (1.8 m) 172 lb (78 kg) 1998-06-20 Bloomfield Hills, Michigan USNTDP (USHL) VAN, 64th overall 2016
11 Michigan Warren, BrendanBrendan Warren Junior F 6' 1" (1.85 m) 185 lb (84 kg) 1997-05-07 Carleton, Michigan USNTDP (USHL) PHI, 81st overall 2015
12 California Raabe, DakotaDakota Raabe Freshman F 5' 9" (1.75 m) 155 lb (70 kg) 1997-05-06 Capistrano Beach, California Wenatchee (BCHL)
13 California Slaker, JakeJake Slaker (A) Sophomore F 5' 10" (1.78 m) 184 lb (83 kg) 1996-06-28 San Diego, California Bloomington (USHL)
17 Michigan Calderone, TonyTony Calderone (C) Senior F 6' 0" (1.83 m) 200 lb (91 kg) 1994-10-15 Trenton, Michigan Sioux Falls (USHL)
18 Sweden Winborg, AdamAdam Winborg Sophomore F 6' 2" (1.88 m) 200 lb (91 kg) 1995-03-31 Stockholm, Sweden Janesville (NAHL)
20 Michigan Marody, CooperCooper Marody Junior F 6' 0" (1.83 m) 190 lb (86 kg) 1996-12-20 Brighton, Michigan Muskegon (USHL) PHI, 158th overall 2015
21 Florida Pastujov, MichaelMichael Pastujov Freshman F 6' 0" (1.83 m) 190 lb (86 kg) 1999-08-23 Bradenton, Florida USNTDP (USHL)
22 Michigan Porikos, NikoNiko Porikos Senior D 6' 3" (1.91 m) 200 lb (91 kg) 1993-05-04 Ann Arbor, Michigan Hamilton (OJHL)
25 Michigan Morgan, LukeLuke Morgan Sophomore F 5' 11" (1.8 m) 190 lb (86 kg) 1997-08-28 Brighton, Michigan Lake Superior State (WCHA)
28 Illinois Roos, AlexAlex Roos Senior (RS) F 5' 9" (1.75 m) 175 lb (79 kg) 1994-12-05 Prairie Grove, Illinois Colorado College (NCHC)
30 Ontario Lavigne, HaydenHayden Lavigne Sophomore G 6' 3" (1.91 m) 200 lb (91 kg) 1996-04-07 Brampton, Ontario Bloomington (USHL)
31 Michigan Catt, ChadChad Catt Junior G 5' 10" (1.78 m) 190 lb (86 kg) 1994-03-28 Williamston, Michigan Soo (NAHL)
33 New York (state) Cecconi, JosephJoseph Cecconi (A) Junior D 6' 2" (1.88 m) 205 lb (93 kg) 1997-05-23 Youngstown, New York Muskegon (USHL) DAL, 133rd overall 2015
43 Florida Hughes, QuinnQuinn Hughes Freshman D 5' 10" (1.78 m) 175 lb (79 kg) 1999-10-14 Orlando, Florida USNTDP (USHL)
45 Ontario LaFontaine, JackJack LaFontaine Sophomore G 6' 3" (1.91 m) 197 lb (89 kg) 1998-01-06 Mississauga, Ontario Janesville (NAHL) CAR, 75th overall 2016
47 Virginia Meike, ChristianChristian Meike Sophomore D 6' 0" (1.83 m) 172 lb (78 kg) 1996-01-23 Arlington, Virginia Waterloo (USHL)
61 Illinois Sanchez, JamesJames Sanchez Sophomore F 6' 1" (1.85 m) 184 lb (83 kg) 1998-02-25 Northbrook, Illinois USNTDP (USHL)
74 Michigan Boka, NicholasNicholas Boka Junior D 6' 1" (1.85 m) 200 lb (91 kg) 1997-09-08 Plymouth, Michigan USNTDP (USHL) MIN, 171st overall 2015
88 Florida Merl, StevenSteven Merl Sophomore F 6' 4" (1.93 m) 207 lb (94 kg) 1996-02-07 Coral Springs, Florida Bloomington (USHL)
90 British Columbia Dancs, DexterDexter Dancs Senior F 6' 2" (1.88 m) 205 lb (93 kg) 1995-02-01 North Vancouver, British Columbia Vernon (BCHL)
91 Florida Pastujov, NickNick Pastujov Sophomore F 6' 0" (1.83 m) 202 lb (92 kg) 1998-01-21 Bradenton, Florida USNTDP (USHL) NYI, 193rd overall 2016

Michigan has had numerous players recognized with prestigious awards and honors. The following is a summary of some of the other standout Michigan Wolverines men's ice hockey players.

U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame[edit]

The following individuals have been inducted into the United States Hockey Hall of Fame.[43]

Hobey Baker Award winners[edit]

The following players have been awarded the Hobey Baker Award.[44]

Player of the year[edit]

The Hockey News U.S. College Player of the Year[45]
  • David Oliver (1994)
  • Brendan Morrison (1996, 1997)
Central Collegiate Hockey Association[46]
  • David Oliver (1994)
  • Brendan Morrison (1996, 1997)
  • Kevin Porter (2008)
Western Collegiate Hockey Association[47]

Academic All-American[edit]

Michigan has had two hockey Academic All-American.[47]

Winter Olympic medalists[edit]

Michigan has had ten players and one coach participate in the Winter Olympics. Seven of these participants earned Olympic medals.[43]

Stanley Cup champions[edit]

Wolverines in the NHL[edit]

Wolverine All-Americans[edit]

The following Michigan Wolverines men's ice hockey players have been chosen as First team Division I All-Americans by the American Hockey Coaches Association.[74]

Statistical accomplishments[edit]

The Michigan Wolverines at the 2015 Great Lakes Invitational

The all-time Michigan single-season goal scoring leaders are Red Berenson (1961–62) and Dave Debol (1976–77) who have each totaled 43. Denny Felsner (1988–92) has totaled 139 in his career for the school record. Brendan Morrison holds the school record for both single-season and career assists with 57 (1996–97) and 182 (1994–97), respectively. Debol (99, 1976–77) and Morrison (284, 1994–97) hold the single-season and career points records, respectively.[75]

On defense, Marty Turco holds the single-season and career win records with 34 (1995–96) and 127 (1995–98). The single-season goals against average is held by Billy Sauer (1.95, 2007–08), while the career record is held by Shawn Hunwick (2.21, 2007–2012). Shawn Hunwick holds the single-season save percentage record, (.925, 2010–11), and also holds the career record (.924, 2007–2012). Montoya's 6 single-season shutouts (2003–2004) is the school record while Turco's 15 is the career record.[75]

Current national individual records[edit]

The following Michigan Wolverines men's ice hockey players hold NCAA Division I national records:[76]

Former national individual records[edit]

The following Michigan Wolverines men's ice hockey players formerly held NCAA Division I national records:[77]

  • Neil Celley – single-season points per game (2.93 1951–1952)
  • Gordon McMillan – single-season points per game (2.70 1948–1949)
  • Neil Celley – single-season goals per game (1.48 1951–1952)
  • Gil Burford – single-season goal points per game (1.48 1950–1952)
  • Karl Bagnell – single-season saves (1305, 1972–75)
  • Gordon MacMillan – career points per game (2.54, 1949–1954)
  • Gil Burford – career goals per game (1.30 1951–1952)
  • Wally Gacek – career goals per game (1.21 1949–1951)
  • Gordon MacMillan – career assists per game (1.38, 1949–1952)
  • David Oliver – career game-winning goals (21, 1994–2006)
  • Steve Shields – career wins (111, 1991–94)

Recent individual national statistical champions[edit]

The following Michigan Wolverines men's ice hockey players have been national statistical champions:[78]

National team records[edit]

Michigan posing with the Great Lakes Invitational banner after winning the 2015 GLI

The following Michigan Wolverines men's ice hockey teams hold NCAA Division I national records:[79]

  • Largest single-game margin of victory (21–0, vs. Ohio State, February 8, 1964)
  • Most single-season overtime wins (6, 1998)

In addition, the 2005 and 2007 teams led the nation in goals per game, and the 1996 and 1997 teams led the nation in both goals allowed per game and scoring margin per game.[80]


Current coaching staff[edit]

As of June 3, 2017[81]

All-time coaching records[edit]

Current records[82]

Tenure Coach Years Record Pct.
1922–27 Joseph Barss 5 26–21–4 .549
1927–44 Edward Lowrey 17 124–136–21 .479
1944–57 Vic Heyliger 13 228–61–13 .776
1957–73 Al Renfrew 16 222–207–11 .517
1973–80 Dan Farrell 7 135–129–6 .511
1980 Wilf Martin^ 1^ 1–1–0 .500
1980–84 John Giordano 4 68–75–6 .477
1984–2016 Red Berenson 33 848–426–92 .654
2017–present Mel Pearson 0 0–0–0
Totals 8 coaches 92 seasons 1,593–1019–143 .604

^ Martin coached the first two games of the 1980–81 season before Giordano took over the coaching duties.

NCAA Tournament history[edit]

Including the 2012 NCAA Division I Men's Ice Hockey Tournament, Michigan holds several NCAA Men's Ice Hockey Championship records: Tournaments (36), consecutive tournaments (22), Frozen Four appearances (24), championships (9).[83] Through the 2016 Tournament, the team has a 51–29 record in the NCAA Tournament, including a 25–15 record in the Frozen Four.[84] The following is the complete history of the Michigan Wolverines men's ice hockey team in the NCAA Men's Ice Hockey Championship.[85]

Year Seed First Round Quarterfinals Semifinals Finals Notes
4-team tournament
Boston College W 6–4 OT Dartmouth College W 8–4 Fastest consecutive goals record (0:05) still stands (Gordon McMillan and Wally Gacek) vs. Dartmouth[86]
Dartmouth College L 2–4 Colorado College WC 10–4
Boston University L 3–4 Boston College WC 10–6 vs. Boston College only tournament game with no penalties for either team[87]
Boston University W 8–2 Brown University W 7–1 Gil Burford's 9 career Frozen Four goals was a record until 1987.[88]
St. Lawrence W 9–3 Colorado College W 4–1
Boston University W 14–2 Minnesota W 7–3 14 goals continues to be a tournament record.[86]
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute L 4–6 Boston College WC 7–2
Harvard University W 7–3 Colorado College W 5–3
St. Lawrence W 2–1 OT Michigan Technological University W 7–5
Harvard University W 6–1 Colorado College L 6–13
Clarkson University L 4–5 St. Lawrence WC 5–1
Providence College W 3–2 Denver W 6–3
5-team tournament
1977 W2
Bowling Green W 7–5 Boston University W 6–4 Wisconsin L 5–6 OT Shortest overtime championship game (0:23)[89]
12-team tournament
1991 W3 Cornell W 4–5 OT, 6–4, 9–3 Boston University L 1–4, 1–8
1992 W1 bye Northern Michigan W 7–6 Wisconsin L 2–4
1993 W2 bye Wisconsin W 4–3 OT Maine L 3–4 OT
1994 W1 bye Lake Superior State L 4–5 OT
1995 W1 bye Wisconsin W 4–3 Maine L 3–4 OT
Longest overtime tournament game at the time (100:28)[89]
1996 W2 bye Minnesota W 4–3 Boston University W 4–0 Colorado College W 3–2 OT
1997 W1 bye Minnesota W 7–4 Boston University L 2–3
1998 W3 Princeton University W 2–1 North Dakota W 4–3 New Hampshire W 4–0 Boston College W 3–2 OT Marty Turco's 9 career Frozen Four wins and 2 career shutouts are former records.[86]
1999 E5 Denver W 5–3 New Hampshire L 1–2 OT
2000 E5 Colgate University W 4–3 OT Maine L 5–2
2001 W3 Mercyhurst College W 4–3 St. Cloud State University W 4–3 Boston College L 2–4
2002 W4 St. Cloud State W 4–2 Denver W 5–3 Minnesota L 2–3
16-team tournament
2003 MW3 Maine W 2–1 Colorado College W 5–3 Minnesota L 2–3 OT
2004 NE2 New Hampshire W 4–1 Boston College L 2–3 OT
2005 MW2 Wisconsin W 4–1 Colorado College L 3–4
2006 W3 North Dakota L 3–4
2007 W2 North Dakota L 5–8
2008 E1 Niagara W 5–1 Clarkson W 2–0 Notre Dame L 4–5 OT
2009 E1 Air Force L 0–2
2010 MW3 Bemidji State W 5–1 Miami L 2–3 2OT
2011 W2 Nebraska-Omaha W 3–2 OT Colorado College W 2–1 North Dakota W 2–0 Minnesota-Duluth L 2–3 OT
2012 MW1 Cornell L 2–3 OT*
2016 MW2 Notre Dame W 3–2 OT North Dakota L 2–5


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External links[edit]