Mike Hastings, a Crookston native, will be the third head coach in Minnesota State men's hockey history, the school announced Saturday afternoon.
After visiting the campus and interviewing on Friday, Hastings decided to leave his associate head coaching position at the University of Nebraska Omaha to become the Mavericks' head coach. He also served as an assistant coach at the University of Minnesota for one season and led Omaha of the USHL for 14 years. He played college hockey at St. Cloud State.
"We are extremely pleased to introduce Mike Hastings as our new men’s hockey head coach," Minnesota State President Dr. Richard Davenport said in a press release. "Mike brings a wealth of knowledge and experience from his work as an assistant coach and associate head coach within the Division I hockey ranks and comes to us with a history of unprecedented success at the junior hockey level. He has demonstrated a great ability to identify talent and is committed to developing student-athletes on the ice, in the classroom and in the community. We’re excited to begin this new era of Maverick Hockey under his leadership."
Athletics Director Kevin Buisman gushed over the opportunity to lead the program, along with the eventual hire.
"I would reiterate what the President has said about Mike’s preparedness to take over the leadership of our program," Buisman said in the release. "There is a tremendous opportunity at hand for Maverick Hockey and that was evident by the level of interest that others demonstrated in this position. Coach Hastings emerged from a highly competitive process as the individual we believed was most qualified to take us in the direction we want to go with in terms of fan interest, attendance, recruiting, and overall competitiveness. Throughout this process, President Davenport has demonstrated a renewed commitment to the future success of Maverick Hockey and has set a solid foundation for our boosters, donors, alumni, and community supporters to rally around. We need to embrace this change in a positive way, seize the moment, and begin to chart a course where excellence in our hockey program becomes the standard."
Hastings' contract is for four years at $225,000 per season. He will begin on Monday, April 16.