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Saturday, May 16, 2009

Hogan leaving Grizzlies for NorPac

By Matt Mackinder/MiCHO Exclusive

Sean Hogan, the head coach that won two national championships at two different levels with Oakland University's ACHA team, has resigned his post to accept the head coaching job with the Yellowstone Quake of the Northern Pacific Hockey League.

For Hogan, 30, he saw the opportunity in Cody, Wyo., as one he could not resist.

"I have always had a keen interest in junior hockey," Hogan said. "I take great pride in my ability to develop players not only on the ice, but with life skills. I want to play an integral role in helping players achieve their dream of playing collegiate hockey."

That said, leaving the Grizzlies was bittersweet for the White Lake native.

"It was a very difficult decision to leave OU," said Hogan. "I helped build the program to be a national contender year in and year out. I made many great friends in the league, at OU and had tremendous players. I will miss the growing and unlimited potential of the ACHA and Oakland hockey. Mostly, I will miss the coaching staff and players.

"There has always been a unique family aspect with Oakland hockey, I take great pride in our accomplishments and have no doubt that the coaching staff will keep our OU hockey tradition alive and well."

Hogan said that in dealing with the NorPac, the first thing he noticed was the professionalism of the organizations. The league, a Tier III Junior A-level outfit, has full-time coaches, incredible community and ancillary support, and an all-around willingness to grow and move players to the next level, observed Hogan.

"To me, the most important aspect of junior hockey is the ability of the organization to put more emphasis on promoting players than win-loss records," Hogan said. "I noticed that immediately with the Yellowstone organization. Winning is important, but striving to win, and the attitude is what develops players and gives them the opportunity to complete at the next level."

Hogan also feels his coaching style will fit well with the Quake.

"I am a very open communicator with my players," boasted Hogan. "Players will know what is expected and there will be no surprises. With that communication comes accountability, both ways, coach-to-player and player-to-coach. When players know their responsibilities, and know that they will be held accountable to those responsibilities, a team or organization can thrive because no one will be confused as to what is expected of them."

Hogan started coaching at OU as an assistant coach working with the defenseman from 2003-2005 under Craig Furstenau. He took over as head coach in 2005-2006 and captured a national championship in ACHA DII in 2005-2006 and then moved to DI and took the title in 2006-2007.

"I am very excited about the opportunity," continued Hogan, who is replacing another Michigan native in Southfield's Marty Quarters with the Quake. "I have begun the recruiting schedule already. There is no time to be nervous, just to get out and get to work. I do a great deal of studying other coaches and a lot of that studying is of football coaches. What I find interesting about football coaches are their organizational and preparation skills. Tony Dungy wrote in his book, "Uncommon," that when making a decision, discuss all possible outcomes, measure your desire and pray.

"I did all three and I know I made the right decision."

OU assistant coach Jeremy Bachusz, a star at Lake Superior State from 1998-2003, will take over the head coaching job with the Grizzlies.

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