Denver Post: Two New Coaching Finalists Revealed

by Mike Chambers

The University of Denver has tentative plans to hire a new hockey coach over the weekend and make the announcement early next week, a school source familiar with the search said Thursday.

The finalists to succeed George Gwozdecky are Seth Appert, a former DU assistant under Gwozdecky and the current head coach at Rensselear; Derek Lalonde, who succeeded Appert at DU before becoming the head coach of the Green Bay Gamblers of the U.S. Hockey League (junior-A amateur); Jim Montgomery, a former Maine star and NHL player who is head coach and general manager of the USHL's Dubuque Fighting Saints; and Boston College associate head coach Greg Brown [read entire article].

34 comments:

dggoddard said...

This is a far more solid list than we thought DU was dealing with a couple of days ago.

Montgomery is considered to be one of the favorites at Maine because of his ties there.

Interesting that Browns name finally pops up after a lot of chatter about him in earlier comments.

timt89 said...

What a solid list. Any thoughts that DU would do this on the cheap have been dispelled.

There are no two better candidates than Lalonde or Appert with DU ties. Greg Brown is a fantastic option and is in a program that mirrors DU in many ways and the top assistant in the country. The only risk with Brown would be if he would return to Boston when Jerry York retires. Montgomery has all the qualifications, too.

I am pleased that the University has taken the time to interview heritage Gwozdecky candidates and give them serious consideration. It underscores the values that Gwoz brought to the program.

I have thought about Coach Gwozdecky a lot this week. In all the discussion about a new coach, many of us are still disappointed in how this whole thing went down. I, for one, think that he was a great coach and even a bettr representative for DU. When the dust settles, I hope Coach Gwozdecky is formally honored at DU in some way. He transformed the program and did it the right way. He should be a Pioneer for life. It will be tough to see him behind the bench of different colored sweaters.

UDenver20 said...

Well said, timt89

Anonymous said...

Love me some Greg Brown.

Would love to see DU combine it's hockey heritage with some of the BC blueprint for success in the modern era of college hockey.

Anonymous said...

How about a statue of Gwoz with his foot on Peg's throat?

Coach said...

So Gwozdecky is not good enough to lead this program, but coaches that he has mentored are?

I better hear an explanation about the firing soon if I`m going to continue my support for this hockey program.

Anonymous said...

There really isn't much to explain.

Contract spats and associated behavior often can overshadow good recordss, especially when the Board of Trustees doesn't like you.

DU will never explain itself in public, because they don't want to besmirch Gwoz, not do they want to open themselves up to potential exposure and legal issues.

Get over the firing. It happens. Wel all love Gwoz, but we need to get behind the new coach.

Anonymous said...

BROWN, BROWN, BROWN.

PLUS HIS BROTHER WON 2 STANLEY CUPS WITH DETROIT

PEG - LETS GET THE PRESS CONFERENCE READY AND HIRE THE BEST AVAILABLE GUY.

Anonymous said...

Seriously. Just carry on. It is over and done with, Gwoz is gone. He was a difficult guy to work with and it finally came back to haunt him. Just support the guys on the ice.

dggoddard said...

Agree with people who say support the players and the school.

I personally believe that Gwozdecky was the greatest coach we ever had and DU screwed this up big-time.

Which is why this coaching hire is so important. The program is at a cross-road. Bring the right guy and revitalize the fans, alumni and students. Or head back to the dark days on the 1990s.

From what I can see DU has four great candidates and whomever rises from the process has the chance to be a great coach. It remains to be seen if that candidate will be able to make us forget Gwozdecky.

Say what you will about Peg [I happen to be a big supporter]. She has hired some great coaches. Bill Tierney, Joe Scott, Liza Kelly and Kerry Cremeans.

Clearly Peg knows how important this hire is. If hockey revenue dips the whole department will be in peril.

Anonymous said...

Scott is the epitome of Peg’s vision. He may not have gotten DU to the NCAA’s but at least his team made it to the NIT. He is as squarely mediocre as a coach can be. CI can't wait to see who they pick for hockey.

Anonymous said...

DG: I agree that Gwoz is a great coach, but I can't agree with greatest coach we have ever had. I would have to put Murray Armstrong at the top of that list.

dggoddard said...

I never saw Murray Armstrong and clearly coaching today is far more complex than coaching in the 60s & 70s.

Jason said...

I agree with others that the best hire would be Brown. He is a solid talent AND it closes the book on the Gwoz era of DU hockey. If you are going to make the change, make it completely. While I like the thought of Lalonde, he is too much a part of the past.

timt89 said...

Anon 10:01
I have to disagree. Joe Scott took, possibly, the worst program in Division 1 basketball to a league championship and post season win. I have watched or listened to most of their games since he came and he is exceptional. Also, just like Gwoz, he brings in good kids.

Turning BBall around has been a monumental effort. Plus, they play one of the most disciplined and creative brands of basketball you will ever see.

Take another look- you will like what you see.

There are pros and cons with Peg but her coaching hires have been exceptional.

Anonymous said...

Well, by all accounts, Peg was an outstanding coach herself, so, I guess, it takes one to know one.

Anonymous said...

The Peter Principle is a proposition that states that the members of an organization where promotion is based on achievement, success, and merit, will eventually be promoted beyond their level of ability. Peg has simply petered out.

Anonymous said...

As a long time DU hockey fan and Crimson Club member I am very DONE with the no class Diversity University. Scum.They could put god behind the bench and they wouldn't get a penny from me. NO Class. All trash. Done

old pio said...

Dr. Peter also identified a corollary concept: Tabulatory Gigantism, in which people demand bigger desks as they move up the chain of command. If you remember the old Beatle Bailey comic strip, you'll recall Lt. Fuzz was always envious that Sgt. Snorkle's desk was a fraction of an inch wider than his.

Anonymous said...

1:40-

Oh well. Bye.

Anonymous said...

Jim Montgomery is the best candidate by far. Lalonde, and Appert are not even in his league. He was an exceptional player and has alot of success as a coach. As a alumni i will be very dissapointed if Montgomery is not offered the job. The others like I said don't have his metal not even close.

Nincompoop said...

1:40.... Don't be so hard on North Dakota.

Anonymous said...

Montgomery has nothing on Greg Brown.

Coach Brown is superior in all categories.

Peg - Please pull the trigger on one of the few coaches to have had as much success as the Murray Armstrong coached DU teams

Twister said...

Anon 10:01,

Joe Scott mediocre?? Try again. Men's hoops was a laughingstock a few years ago and under his leadership the is poised to make the NCAAs before too long.

Sounds like the Greg Brown train is pciking up steam.

Anonymous said...

Honestly, if Peg fired Scott instead of Gwoz would more than a handful of folks complain?

Anonymous said...

You guys underestimate Peg's impact.

Her coaching hires so far have been sensational, relative to predecessors. Her teams are winning and many of them are seriously ranked- DU is the top non-football athletic dept in the country.

DU athletes graduate at a 90% rate and have better graduation rates and GPAs than the DU all student average. And the kids stay off the police blotter, too.

Sure, I wish she'd done a better job with Gwoz and Conference Affiliation, but in both cases, the Board of Trustees has made both situations difficult.

I would argue that Peg has done a better job with her Division than any Dean at DU has on a national level. How many academic programs at DU are truly top 20 in their fields nationally? Atheltics has six of them right now- Womens's Soccer (#16) M Hockey (#12), Skiing (4), M Lacrosse (3), W. Lacrosse (12) and Gymnastics (#12).

Anonymous said...

I don't care what anybody says. Peg doesn't run the hockey program - Ron Graham does. Sure Peg is the patsy; the title, and the face - and get all the credit or criticism...but for HOCKEY - Graham is her go-to. I guarantee it. She'd be crazy not to lean heavily on him for hockey decisions. Why are so many of you avoiding that thought? Don't think it was all her decision. They even said that Ron was doing the interviews - of course he is. That guy is a key figure in the program; and from what I see - he (probably quite smartly so) stays in the background.

Anonymous said...

Agreed - Ron is our hockey guy.

That said, he has a keen eye for talent, doesn't want to go with a disciple of George or a lightweight. How Greg Brown got there is probably due to his due diligence and conversations with hockey guys.

I trust Peg to trust Ron with this decision.

Conclusion: Greg Brown

Anonymous said...

Montgomery - no masters + DUI.

Brown - no head coaching. No Beantown in DTown!

Appert - 0.400 win percentage. Are we trying for mediocrity?

LaLonde -best recruiter in the nation...ask anyone in the hockey world. Up-and-comer...get him before he's gone!

timt89 said...

Anon 5:34
Stanford, Notre Dame, Michigan and others believe that they can actually excel with multiple sports during the winter. I want all of our teams to do well - this is not basketball versus hockey. The athletic department recognizes that hockey is the Flagship sport- always will be. However, Basketball is a sport that can, potentially, generate revenue or at least cover costs. Most of our other sports are money losers. A strong basketball program is good for all of us.

Joe is a great guy and he represents us well. I think a lot of people would hate to see him go...

Anonymous said...

A handful? That's more than showed up at the games. Scott gets paid way too much to have his team miss the NCAA's and fizzle in in the NIT. Peg fired the wrong coach. And now there are rumors that Tierney is is in trouble. Peg wants to push basketball and with a limited budget is robbing Peter to pay Paul.

dggoddard said...

DU's budget problems must be far worse than they are letting on.

They're raising tuition 4%, freezing faculty salaries, cutting the athletics budget by $500,000 and blaming the whole fiasco on a few students not showing up for the first day of classes.

http://duclarion.com/faculty-pay-takes-hit-front/

Meanwhile Coombe is running around campus telling everyone that "DU wants to have a 'conversation' about the role of the western settlers on Native American genocide."

I want to have a "conversation" about the Genocide Chancellor Coombe is committing on DU.

Anonymous said...

How bout a conversation on the REAL cost of the obama show last October?

Anonymous said...

It was more the Romney show than the Obama show.

Whatever the cost, it was worth it to DU.

Applications are up 35% over last year - over 20,000 this year.

In fact, there are so many applicants now, that they had to cancel the Hyde Interview Program completely becuase there are too many people interested in coming here now...