Cavanaugh shares spirit with “UConn way” at Coaches Road Show

UConn’s ice hockey coach Mike Cavanaugh spoke with the media on Monday, May 23.. He shared the spirit of UConn athletics at the event as he talked with the media about coaching, last season and the “UConn way.”

Cavanaugh began by talking about last season and where he and the team felt there was a “shift.” Last season, the team finished 20-16, but fell to UMass in overtime, 2-1, in the second round of the Hockey East Championship.

” I think it’s been shifting but I think this year we have solidified it. The win was a good win, but I think the Northeastern win was even more of a statement game for us,” Cavanaugh said, talking about where he felt the season shifting and winning a game on a “big stage.”

Cavanaugh said that the right leadership and great recruiting is how the team can keep going forward, alluding to UConn basketball as a prime example of how the “expectation to win does not go away.”

Going off of this season, Cavanaugh discussed what he hopes the future of the team will look like.

” I hope it’s just a continuation and that it continues for a long while. He said that he believes it’s incumbent on us to continue building and getting better.

Because the league is improving, Cavanaugh’s primary goal is to continue to recruit and coach well, remain innovative, and not become complacent. Jerry York, a former college hockey coach, showed Cavanaugh how he was always open to change and adapting with the times.

” I don’t believe that human nature changes, and I believe people will remain the same. Cavanaugh stated that no matter how you live your life or coach your team, the game will always change. You have to be able to adapt.

Now, it’s offseason, Cavanaugh felt it would be best for the team to stay at home. The majority of the team will return to the Summer Two module in July and work out and take a few classes. Cavanaugh felt it was important for the team bonding, as the hockey team is constantly adding new faces. Cavanaugh feels at home discussing coaching for UConn’s hockey team.

“UConn offered me my first job as a head coach. Cavanaugh stated that he felt a loyalty to that program. “When you build something new, you suddenly see the fruits of your labor. You’re now seeing a brand-new rink being built, and you’re also seeing a top-notch recruitment class. My heart was here, and I didn’t want to go anywhere.”

Cavanaugh ended by discussing the “UConn way,” something that is close with the athletic community at the school. Cavanaugh likes the fact that it’s not his cultural, it’s UConn culture.

He stated, “I believe UConn has its culture.” Jim Penders seems to have it figured out. Geno (Auriemma), Jim Calhoun, and everyone else do. Nancy Stevens did, Ray Reed did. There is a UConn culture in the athletic department. It was my job, my responsibility, to ensure that my team lived upto that UConn culture.

” Since my time, I have been able to select the minds of Geno, Jim, Nancy, Jim Penders, and Ray. Dee Rowe, who knew it all better than anyone. I have tried to pass their wisdom on to my team.

He said, “It’s just really transcendent. The entire campus. We created this Olympic village that’s really cool every day to show up and go to work to.”

Read More