After six seasons, ACHA Division I Men’s Head Coach and American Collegiate Hockey Association (ACHA) Hockey Director Dan Phelps has stepped down from his positions at Adrian College for personal and family commitments, and to pursue other opportunities in his future. The news comes after the Bulldogs finished this season with a 31-7 record and captured both the Great Lakes College Hockey League (GLCHL) regular season championship and playoff title. It is the first time in the league’s four-year history that the same team has won both titles in the same season. Adrian went into the ACHA DI National Tournament for the fourth consecutive time ranked No. 6. They were knocked out in the opening round by Central Oklahoma in a hard fought 1-0 battle.
“This was an extremely difficult decision to come to, but after sitting down with my family and looking at the big picture now, and in the future, it was in the best interest of my family to move forward in another direction in my life,” said Phelps.
In his tenure with Adrian, Phelps will leave behind a notable track record not only personally, but for the program as well. Being hired in 2008 to coach only the Division I team, as the years progressed, Phelps was a pivotal player in the initiation and growth of all the ACHA teams the College now fields (four-total). As Hockey Director, he has worn both coaching and program administrative hats for the past four seasons. His accomplishments both on and off the ice leave a great foundation for others to follow:
Games, Erzurum, Turkey 2011, and Trentino, Italy 2013
- 6 Seasons -165 wins - 65 losses
- 3 GLCHL regular season titles, 2 playoff championships
- 4 consecutive ACHA Division I National Tournament appearances
Coach – United States Men’s National University Team - World University
- GLCHL Coach-of-the-Year Award - 2011, 2013
- ACHA Division I National Coach-of-the-Year – 2011
- Managing Director - ACHA Division I All-Star Game - Adrian College - 2010, 2011
In addition to personal accolades, he has helped guide and mentor numerous players each season to conference awards and selections along with many ACHA Division I national award winners. He states that all the awards won by his players come from their hard work and dedication to the team. Of all the individual awards his players receive, he notes the Academic All-League and Academic All-ACHA selections are the most cherished to him personally.
“Being a student-athlete can be both mentally and physically tough. To see the players balance academics and hockey, along with all the other aspects in their lives, and do it at the level they do…there are no words big enough to recognize these tremendous accomplishments. These guys are amazing in their efforts! Seeing all our players walk up to the podium to receive their degree has made every one of my days on campus worth it.”
In looking at his time at Adrian, he credits the people he worked with as a big part of his opportunity and success. “I would be remiss in my departure by not thanking certain people that have been a big part of mine, and my family’s life for the past six years. Foremost, I want to thank Dr. Jeffrey Docking (Adrian College president), for the opportunity he gave me to live the dream of being a hockey coach as a profession. I also want to thank him for believing and allowing me to grow and develop the ACHA hockey programs to where they are today for the college.