UMass Picks Micheletto to Fill Coaching Vacancy
CHN Staff Report
AMHERST, Mass. John Micheletto was named the new head coach at Massachusetts, ending a lengthy search following last month's resignation of Don Cahoon.
Micheletto is a 21-year coaching veteran who spent the last nine seasons as an assistant at Vermont.
UMass had offered the position to Quinnipiac coach Rand Pecknold and Holy Cross coach Paul Pearl, but both ultimately turned it down. USHL coach Mark Carlson, and New Hampshire assistant Scott Borek were also reportedly in the mix.
“After our meetings with John and our consultations with those in the college hockey community, we are thrilled to announce him as our new head coach,” said UMass athletic director John McCutcheon. “John brings a wealth of coaching experience, is a talented recruiter, understands the Hockey East Association, and certainly has a strong familiarity with the UMass hockey program.”
Said Micheletto, “When I first started coaching in 1991, I never fathomed that my first head coaching job would come at such a highly-regarded hockey program as UMass.”
Micheletto's tenure at Vermont was highlighted by a 2009 Frozen Four appearance, and the recruiting of Viktor Stalberg. Since he joined the Vermont staff, Micheletto coached or recruited 12 different Catamounts who were selected in the NHL Draft including rising sophomore Connor Brickley.
In June 2006, Micheletto was promoted to associate head coach at Vermont and served as the program’s director of recruiting.
Prior to his stint at Vermont, the Chicago native was an assistant coach at Notre Dame (1999-03) and Union.
Before moving to the collegiate level, Micheletto spent five years (1991-96) in the prep ranks at The Hill School in Pottstown, Pa. Micheletto served as the Dean of Students, an instructor of English, and a dorm parent. As the head coach of the hockey team, he helped resurrect the program during his tenure.
Micheletto has also been involved with USA Hockey, as a coach in the Junior Olympic Festival for six years, and as an assistant, in 2000, for the U.S. Under-18 Select Team, which competed at the Four Nations Tournament in Kezmarok, Slovakia.
A 1984 graduate of the Milton (Mass.) Academy, Micheletto served as team captain and boarding school president. Micheletto then attended Dartmouth, graduating in 1990 with a degree in English modified with Education. He pursued a professional hockey career, which included stops with the Enschede Lions of the Netherlands First Division and the Erie Golden Blades of the now defunct Atlantic Coast Hockey League.
"Words cannot describe how proud I was when I learned the news that John Micheletto was offered the head coach position at UMass," Vermont coach Kevin Sneddon said in a statement. "Though we will miss him as a coach, I will miss him even more as a close friend. Thankfully, he remains in the best conference in college hockey and I look forward to competing against him in Hockey East for many years. He is truly an exceptional coach, and an even better person. UMass is very fortunate to have John continue the proud tradition that Toot Cahoon and his staff established at UMass."