The latest major mover is Boston College’s Greg Brown, who was officially named an assistant coach with the NHL’s New York Rangers, joining former BU head coach David Quinn’s new staff.
Brown, who played at BC through 1990 and spent the last 14 years there as an assistant to Jerry York, was part of three national championship teams with the Eagles. It’s the only coaching position he’s ever held. A one-time second-round NHL Draft pick, Brown played 94 NHL games after leaving BC, and spent his later professional playing years in Europe.
Brown is the third one-time NCAA assistant to be named an NHL assistant coach this week, joining Derek Lalonde (Ferris State/Denver) who went to Tampa, and Reid Cashman (Quinnipiac) who went to Washington.
Quinn also added David Oliver to his staff, a one-time All-American at Michigan who played 233 NHL games. He has most recently been coaching in the Colorado Avalanche organization.
Also this week, another respected long-time assistant, Cam Ellsworth, left Massachusetts-Lowell to take the head coaching job at D-III Norwich, a spot that was vacated by the retirement of Mike McShane.
New Hampshire, Boston University and Merrimack all named new head coach this offseason — Mike Souza and Albie O’Connell were promoted from assistant to head coach at UNH and BU, respectively, while former Providence assistant Scott Borek was named to replace Mark Dennehy at Merrimack.
In all, there have been 17 head coaching changes in the past two seasons, the most of any two-year span in college hockey history. That also contributed to a cascade of significant assistant coaching changes as well.
The carousel will surely continue, with several high-profile assistant jobs still available, including this one. Dennehy, a BC alum, could have been a candidate, but accepted the head coaching job with the ECHL’s Wheeling Nailers last month.
The Providence Journal is reporting that Connecticut’s Brendan Buckley and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s J.D. Forrest have already interviewed for the assistant job at Boston College. Both are former Eagles defensemen.