Following the announcement last weekend that Northeastern Athletic Director Jeff Konya will leave his position for the same role at San Jose State University, Northeastern is expected to announce today that Fernie Flaman Men’s Hockey Coach Jim Madigan will move up from the bench and take the reigns at the top of the Northeastern Athletic Department. The move has been long-awaited up and down Huntington Ave, with many both inside and outside the program believing for years that Madigan would one day be tabbed to lead Northeastern as Athletic Director. Madigan, a former Northeastern captain as a player and Stanley Cup Champion scout in the NHL, had been Head Coach of the Huskies since he was selected to replace Greg Cronin in 2011.
Madigan will end his coaching tenure after ten seasons as the most successful head coach in the history of Northeastern Men’s Ice Hockey. Compiling a record of 174-139-39, Madigan is the only head coach in the history of the program with a winning record (.550). His teams finished .500 or better in each of his final eight seasons at the helm and his 174 wins are second on the school’s all time wins list to the legendary Fernie Flaman, who needed 19 seasons and nearly 600 games to compile 255 wins (Madigan also played under Flaman). Madigan’s teams won two Hockey East Championships, three Beanpots, and made the NCAA tournament three times in four years between 2016 and 2019.
The Huskies broke a 28 year Hockey East title drought in 2016 and a 30 year Beanpot drought in 2018 under his leadership, followed by a sweep of both trophies in 2019 and the first Beanpot three-peat in school history in 2020. He coached 27 NHL draft picks at Northeastern as well as a number of players who were undrafted but went on to sign NHL contracts following their collegiate careers. Including his playing and assistant coaching career, Madigan has been involved in six Northeastern Beanpot Championships, the most of any individual at the school, and coached on all three Hockey East Championship winning staffs in school history.
In Madigan’s ten years as Head Coach, Northeastern players were recipients of the 2018 Hobey Baker Award, the 2019 Mike Richter Award, 3 Hobey Baker Finalist Nominations, 8 All-American Awards, 2 Hockey East Player of the Year Awards, 2 Hockey East Goaltending Championships, 19 All-Hockey East Selections, and 6 Hockey East All-Rookie Selections.
Prior to his appointment as head coach, Madigan was a Scout with the New York Islanders and Pittsburgh Penguins of the NHL, winning the Stanley Cup as a member of the Penguins in 2009, and an Associate Dean and Director of Development at Northeastern in the College of Business Administration, roles that combined have made his eventual rise to Athletic Director seemingly a foregone conclusion for a number of years. Possibly the single most dedicated member of the Northeastern University community, Madigan has worked at Northeastern continuously since his graduation and hire as assistant hockey coach in 1986 and has proven time and time again his dedication to the university and that he is the right man for the job.
With the news today that Madigan will be leaving the bench, he is expected to name Associate Head Coach Jerry Keefe the 11th Fernie Flaman Men’s Hockey Coach at Northeastern. A part of the Northeastern staff since 2011 and Associate Head Coach since 2014, Keefe is one of the most highly regarded assistants in collegiate hockey and has been widely considered a “Head Coach in Waiting” while with the Huskies. Keefe has played a huge role in bringing NU to a prominence and deserves as much credit as Madigan for all of the many successes already cited over the last decade. He is noted for his prowess on the recruiting trail, having brought talented players to Huntington Ave for the past decade, as well as for his work on the power play, including speaking at NHL events on power play coaching and leading the Huskies to a top ranked power play on a yearly basis. In addition to his coaching duties at NU, Keefe also coached the United States National Junior Team in 2019 and 2020. Following his official hire, Keefe is expected to retain assistant coach Mike McLaughlin as part of his staff, with the remainder of the staff still to be named. Director of Hockey Operations Matt Harlow was an Associate Head Coach and Interim Head Coach for Tabor Academy prior to his arrival at NU and may be a candidate for the other full-time assistant position.
Congratulations to Athletic Director Jim Madigan and Coach Keefe on their new roles, we look forward to their partnership continuing to build on the momentum NU Athletics has been showing for the last number of years and can’t wait to see what the future holds. We’ll have more when Northeastern holds their official introductions.