College hockey: Legendary Clarkson and Boston College coach Len Ceglarski dies at age 91
POTSDAM -- Former Clarkson University men's hockey coach Len Ceglarski died Saturday in the Boston area at the age of 91
Ceglarski, who is the ninth-winningest coach in NCAA Division I men's hockey, began his head coaching career at Clarkson, where he ranks second after Mark Morris in career wins for the Golden Knights.
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He coached the Golden Knights from 1958-72 and then worked at Boston College from 1972-92. He finished with a career record of 673-339-37.
In his 14 seasons guiding the Golden Knights Ceglarski compiled a record of 254-97-11 and took Clarkson to the NCAA Tournament four times, including national championship game appearances in 1962, 1966 and 1970, as well as leading Clarkson to its first ECAC Hockey Tournament title in 1966.
Ceglarski took Boston College to the Frozen Four eight times and reached the national championship game four times with the Eagles.
The entire Boston College community is heavy hearted today. Legendary BC Hockey coach and athlete Len Ceglarski passed away this morning at the age of 91. https://t.co/KSoL0y8v4T pic.twitter.com/uOvMpyTuCQ— BC Hockey (@BCHockey) December 16, 2017
He was followed at Clarkson by his former assistant coach Jerry York, who also later became the head coach at Boston College. Ceglarski won the Spencer Penrose Award, which goes to the national coach of the year, three times, first coming in 1966 at Clarkson.
He's a member of the Clarkson and Boston College Athletic halls of fame as well as the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame. Ceglarski was a forward on Boston College's 1949 national championship team and won an Olympic silver medal with the 1952 U.S. Hockey team.
Condolences to the Ceglarski family on the passing of Len today. A true gentleman and one of the greats in college athletics. We will always be grateful for what he brought to Potsdam, @ClarksonUniv and Golden Knights Hockey. @BChockey @NCAAIceHockey pic.twitter.com/fE98LQVzXn— ClarksonHockey (@ClarksonHockey1) December 17, 2017
While he played for the Eagles, and finished his career coaching them, Clarkson had a special place in his life.
"The 14 years we spent up there, they were just great years," Ceglarski said before his induction into Clarkson's Hall of Fame in 2007.
Current Clarkson athletic director Steve Yianoukos played on a freshman team Ceglarski coached and said in 2007, "He was a player's coach. He let you do your thing. If you did something wrong, he'd talk to you. Practices were very demanding, especially early in the week."
One thing Ceglarski was known for during his time at Clarkson was a distaste for fraternities and didn't allow his players to join them.
"He was more like a father figure than a coach," said ex-Clarkson All-American defenseman Steve Warr in 2007. "He was adamantly against fraternities. By the time I rolled around, he didn't want anybody to get in fraternities."
Ceglarski was known as a family man during his time with Clarkson. He made sure his players were committed to their studies and he himself did not smoke, drink or curse.
"He was quite a gentleman, a pleasure to play for," said former Clarkson player Brian Wilkinson in 2007. "I certainly looked up to him immensely."