MINNEAPOLIS (GopherSports.com) – Gopher Hockey assistant coach Grant Potulny has been named the new head coach at Northern Michigan, the school announced on Tuesday. A University of Minnesota alum, Potulny spent the last eight seasons on the Gophers coaching staff.
“Grant is very deserving of the opportunity to be the next head coach at Northern Michigan University,” Minnesota head coach Don Lucia said. “He’s had a tremendous career at the ‘U’ as a player and as a coach, and it’s been enjoyable to watch him grow. There’s no question in my mind that he’s ready to be a head coach. Grant’s a great family man, and he and his family will be a tremendous asset in their move to Marquette.”
Potulny helped guide the Maroon & Gold to a new NCAA record with six-straight regular-season conference titles along with four NCAA tournament berths. The Gophers made a pair of Frozen Four appearances during his time on staff including a national championship berth in 2014. Minnesota also captured the 2015 Big Ten Tournament title with Potulny on the bench. Eleven Gophers who skated for Potulny have gone on to play in the NHL while seven Minnesota players earned All-America accolades during his tenure including First Team honorees Tyler Sheehy (2017) and Mike Reilly (2014, 2015).
In addition to his coaching accomplishments at Minnesota, Potulny has been integral part of USA Hockey’s success at the international level. He has served as an assistant coach on two gold medal-winning U.S. National Junior Teams at the IIHF World Junior Championships (2013, 2017). His most recent outing in 2017 saw the U.S. squad go unbeaten in tournament action to claim its fourth gold medal and 10th overall medal.
As a player, Potulny remains one of greatest on-ice leaders in Gopher Hockey history. The program’s only three-year captain since 1947, he helped the Maroon & Gold win back-to-back national championships in 2002 and 2003. In 146 games with the Gophers, Potulny tallied 116 points (68 goals, 48 assists) before playing professionally from 2004-09.
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