Michigan State University is in the market for a new hockey coach.
That’s after Tom Anastos stepped down from his position as head of the hockey program on Tuesday.
He led the team for six seasons, posting a record of 78-122-24.
Anastos, the former commissioner of the (now defunct) Central Collegiate Hockey Association, got off to a strong start in his first season, going 19-16-4 and leading the team to the 2012 NCAA Tournament.
But the team slumped in recent years, going 7-24-4 overall this year and 3-14-3 in the Big Ten, finishing in 6th place (out of 6 teams) in the conference.
Anastos says he wasn’t living up to his own goals.
“After a review of our season, and in spite of the progress we have made in so many areas, we have not met my expectations,” he said in a press release. “As a leader, I believe that you must always make every decision based on what’s in the overall best interests of the program, and never put personal interests first. After lengthy conversations with Mark Hollis, I am stepping down from my role to help facilitate a change in leadership and direction for Spartan hockey.”
“I want to thank Tom Anastos for the guidance he’s provided Spartan hockey over the last six seasons,” said MSU Athletic Director Mark Hollis in the same release. “He would be the first to admit that he wished there were more on-ice victories, but he built a program that was a great value to our community.”
Anastos is also a former Spartan hockey player (from 1981-85) and a former assistant hockey coach under Ron Mason, a fact that was not lost on Hollis when he made the hire and as he announced Anastos’ departure.
“A loyal Spartan for more than three decades, Tom Anastos has given so much to Michigan State,” he said. “He’s had a positive impact on our entire department, well beyond the ice rink. Tom’s an amazing individual whose passion for Michigan State is unsurpassed. He and his wife Lisa and their five children will continue to be valued members of our Spartan family.”
Assistant Coach Tom Newton will take over temporarily while MSU conducts a national search for a replacement.