The American Hockey Coaches Association has announced that former St. Lawrence University men's ice hockey coach Joe Marsh will be the 2014 recipient of the John MacInnes Award, recognizing him for his great concern for amateur hockey and youth programs.
The recipients of the MacInnes Award have had high winning percentages as well as outstanding graduation percentages among their former players. The winners of this award have helped young men grown not only as hockey players, but more importantly as men.
Marsh will be among those honored at the AHCA National Convention in Naples, FL in May.
Joe Marsh spent 26 years behind the St. Lawrence University bench and forged one of the most successful coaching careers in U.S. college history. Not only was he successful with wins and championships, but he was also one of the most revered and admired coaches of his generation. He coached twelve of the fourteen 20+ win seasons in St. Lawrence history, produced ECAC championship teams in 1988, 1989, 1992, 2000 and 2001,and took teams to eight ECAC tournament championship game appearances.
His 1988 team was NCAA runner-up and he took a total of eight teams to NCAA tournament play. His career record in Canton was 468-399-72, the 468 wins ranking 26th all-time at the start of this season.
"At St. Lawrence, we do not measure a coach's work solely by the length of a career, the number of victories, or the championship banners draped from the rafters, though Joe Marsh has earned the luster of many positive statistics," said St. Lawrence President William Fox in a statement. "Rather,we appreciate and admire Joe's success because it was all about being a teacher first, who had lessons, values and examples to impart. Our men's hockey program, so distinctive from all others, is nationally renowned – and an important part of Joe's legacy is the number of alumni who have gone into professional coaching. St. Lawrence is immensely grateful."
Marsh, who received the AHCA's Spencer Penrose Award as Division I Men's Coach of the Year in 1989 and again in 2000, was responsible for launching the careers of many former players and assistant coaches. Among his former assistants are Mark Morris, now coach of the Manchester Monarchs in the American Hockey League; Don Vaughan, head coach at Colgate; Paul Flanagan, head women's coach at Syracuse; Pierre Maguire, NBC hockey analyst; and Jay Heinbuck, director of scouting for the Pittsburgh Penguins. Three of his former players are Division I head coaches:Bob Prier at Princeton and Chris Wells, coach of the St. Lawrence women's program, and Greg Carvel, who succeeded Marsh at SLU.
Among Marsh's many accomplishments, he received the Tim Taylor Award as ECAC Coach of the Year on four different occasions, more than any other coach in ECAC history. A native of Lynn, Mass., Marsh briefly attended Boston College and then was graduated from the University of New Hampshire, where he played for the legendary coach Charlie Holt, before his career was shortened by injury.