Bemidji State didn’t waste time replacing assistant Eddie Olczyk Jr., who took a scouting job with the NHL’s Seattle Kraken yesterday. Mike Gibbons will return to the program and fill the role vacated by Olczyk. Gibbons was most recently at St. Cloud State, where he spent 14 seasons before retiring in March.
Gibbons, 65, is a former BSU defenseman who won a Division II national title with the program as a player and is also a member of the Bemidji State Athletics Hall of Fame. He began his coaching career at BSU as an assistant in 1981 and was interim head coach of the program during the 1982-83 season, leading the Beavers to a 30-6-1 record and a trip to the national championship game.
“Gibby will be a great addition to our staff,” BSU head coach Tom Serratore said. “Not only is he a tremendous coach with experience at all levels of hockey, but he is a proven, successful recruiter who understands the makeup of a championship-caliber team. As an alumnus, he already knows Bemidji State and Beaver Hockey well. He is part of the historic fabr
ic of this program and we are fortunate to have him back.”
After his previous stint at BSU, Gibbons became an assistant coach at Northern Michigan and also had runs with Colorado College and Denver. Gibbons also spent some time in the pros, serving as an AHL assistant for the Anaheim Ducks from 1995-97 and then became the head coach at Eastview High School in Minnesota for 10 years before taking the job at St. Cloud State in 2007.
“It means a lot to be back. Bemidji State Hockey has had such an impact on my life, being able to come back full circle is unbelievable,” said Gibbons. “I may have left Beaver Hockey in 1983 but the Beaver Hockey culture has never left me. Everywhere I have coached I have tried to replicate that culture, so I am already familiar with it and I believe I will fit in very nicely here."
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