A week after parting ways with long time head coach Don Lucia, Bob Motzko was named the newest head coach of the University of Minnesota Golden Gopher Hockey Men’s Hockey Team.
(Via Gophersports.com) – University of Minnesota Athletics Director Mark Coyle announced that he has hired Bob Motzko as the new head coach of the Gopher Men’s Hockey program, pending Board of Regents approval of the agreement. Motzko, a Minnesota native and an assistant coach for the two most recent Gopher national championship teams, has spent the past 13 years building St. Cloud State into a national program.
It’s a weird feeling. The very first Gopher Hockey game I watched was when they won the 2002 National Championship against Maine.
That video has over 200,000 views, you can bet I’m at least 250 of those. Needless to say, I’ve been a big fan ever since. Don Lucia was in his 3rd season as the Gophers head coach at the time. Now for the first time since I’ve been a fan, there will be someone else commanding the bench at Mariucci Arena. St. Cloud State’s Bob Motzko will be that man. Motzko is a familiar name, as he was an assistant coach for those two national championships before taking the St. Cloud State job.
Motzko took that St. Cloud team to their first ever Frozen Four in 2013. Some people wanted a younger guy to take the reigns like Grant Poltunly. Some wanted long time assistant coach Mike Guentzel to get the job. Even former Gopher and recent gold medal head coach Robb Stauber’s name was thrown around. But in the end, AD Mark Coyle went with the guy with the great track record at a top college hockey school.
In the end, the program just needed a new voice. Motzko will do a great job of that. Now the big question will be who are the assistants? Will Guentzel and Scott Bell stay on? My gut says no but who knows.