Western Michigan Names Blashill
CHN Staff Report
Western Michigan has named Jeff Blashill its new head coach, CHN sources have confirmed. He replaces Jim Culhane, who was let go at the conclusion of the Broncos' season.
Blashill will assume head coaching duties when his season with the Indiana Ice of the USHL ends. Indiana is about to begin the playoffs. He has spent the last two years coaching the Ice after serving as an assistant coach to Enrico Blasi at Miami.
"When we set out to find our next head coach, we wanted a candidate with experience as a head coach, one that has had success at multiple levels and someone that has the drive and blueprint to take this program to championship levels with national prominence,” WMU athletic director Kathy Beauregard said. “Coach Blashill embodies each and every one of these qualities.”
Blashill, a native of Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., led Indiana to the USHL's Clark Cup championship last season, in his first season as head coach there. His team defeated Dean Blais' Fargo Force.
“I am extremely excited for the opportunity to lead the Western Michigan Bronco Hockey team and build upon the foundation laid by so many Bronco Alums,” Blashill said Tuesday. “I’d like to thank ... those who were a part of this process for the trust they’ve placed in me and for allowing me the opportunity and challenge of pursuing, with passion and integrity, championship level ice hockey at Western Michigan. I also owe a great deal of thanks to Indiana Ice owners Paul and Cindy Skjodt for the opportunity to lead the Ice the past two seasons.”
Blashill was a goalie for Ferris State from 1994-98, then started his coaching career as an assistant at his alma mater for four seasons. He went on to become an assistant at Miami for six years. He has also been an assistant for the U.S. World Junior team.
Others known to have interviewed were Colorado College assistant Joe Bonnett and Miami assistant Brent Brekke.
Blashill joins another Ferris State goaltender in the Division I head coaching fraternity, Rensselaer's Seth Appert.