Boston College men’s hockey has missed out on the NCAA Tournament back-to-back seasons and, prior to its Beanpot semifinal victory over Harvard, hadn’t won a non-conference game since Nov. 13, 2016, but Jerry York—the all-time winningest coach in college hockey history—is here to stay.
On Monday morning, Director of Athletics Martin Jarmond announced that the 73-year-old head coach has signed a multi-year extension through the 2021-22 season.
“Jerry embodies everything we look for in a coach,” the second-year AD told BCEagles.com. “He is a tremendous person, teacher, [and] leader and has taken our program to elite levels, both on and off the ice, while also making such a positive impact in all areas for his student-athletes. We are thrilled to see Jerry continue to lead our program for years to come.”
York is in his 25th season with BC, his alma mater, and has racked up 1,063 career wins. Before returning to Chestnut Hill, he coached at Bowling Green (1979-94) and Clarkson (1972-79). While at Bowling Green, York guided the Falcons to the program’s first and only National Championship (1984), in addition to three NCAA Quarterfinals appearances. But he has cemented his legacy in the college hockey world on the Heights.
Four victories shy of the 600 mark, York has posted a 596-306-86 record with the Eagles, including nine consecutive 20-plus win seasons—to put that in perspective, only one other Division I team, Denver, has a longer active streak.
The Watertown, Mass. native has navigated Hockey East better than any other coach in the league. Since he was hired, BC has only had a sub-.500 record in conference play four times—two of which came amid his first three seasons with the program. All in all, York has logged 15 or more league wins in a season on 15 separate occasions, claimed at least a share of 10 regular season titles and coached nine Hockey East Tournament winning teams. Even in the past two years—the program’s first stretch of consecutive seasons without a NCAA Tournament since 1995-97—York’s Eagles finished with a combined Hockey East record of 31-12, including an 18-6 mark in 2017-18, for which he was named Hockey East Coach of the Year.
That’s not to say that York hasn’t made a name for himself on the national stage, too. He has coached BC to 12 Frozen Fours and four national titles, three of which came in a five-year span (2008-12). Not to mention that he’s also the sport’s all-time leader in NCAA Tournament victories with 41. Besides delivering championships, he’s also produced a number of NHL players. At the moment, BC is tied for the most NHL alumni with 21 pro skaters. York’s former players have hoisted a combined nine Stanley Cups, and forwards Johnny Gaudreau (Calgary Flames) and Cam Atkinson (Columbus Blue Jackets) were part of January’s All-Star Game.
Despite all the accolades, there’s no denying that York has encountered a bit of a rough patch. This season, BC ranks 52nd in goals per game (2.31) and 31st in goals allowed per game (2.85) after only losing one skater to graduation in 2017-18 and bringing in one of the best recruiting classes in the country. Nonetheless, York is still optimistic that his team has what it takes to get BC back to where it was a few years ago.
“I am excited and honored to continue coaching our incredible student-athletes at my alma mater,” York said. “I truly believe that this year’s team can and will accomplish something significant in our ongoing pursuit of trophies.”
The Eagles can live up to York’s word on Monday night with a Beanpot Championship victory over Northeastern, a win that would secure BC’s first title in the annual tournament since 2016.
Featured Image by Julia Hopkins / Heights Senior Staff