Willie Mitchell, a 1993 graduate of the University of Western Ontario and a former associate head coach at Wayne State has been named an assistant coach for the Vermont men’s hockey team. Head coach Kevin Sneddon made the announcement today.
“I feel very fortunate to be adding another great coach to our program,” Sneddon said. “I have been truly fortunate during my career to be surrounded by great people, and this continues today by naming Willie Mitchell as men’s hockey assistant coach. Willie’s coaching experience at the collegiate level combined with his recruiting expertise will certainly help our program. Throughout his career as a player and as a coach, he has had success. Our staff is looking forward to continuing that trend as we compete for Hockey East championships.”
“I am grateful to Kevin Sneddon and the University of Vermont for such an incredible opportunity to be a part of their program and family,” Mitchell said. “I am very honored and excited to join such a prestigious program and look forward to working with the student-athletes and entire staff as we work toward our goals as a team.”
Mitchell comes to Vermont after spending seven years with the Wayne State hockey program in Detroit. He spent two seasons as the associate head coach after spending the first five years as an assistant coach.
Mitchell played an integral role with the Warriors as they captured three consecutive CHA Tournament Championships from 2001 to 2003. His duties with the team included coordinating all recruiting efforts of prospective student-athletes, game and practice preparation and video analysis. He also served as the team’s goaltending coach.
Prior to WSU, Mitchell served as a volunteer coach at Michigan State. While at MSU, he worked in all facets of the program but was primarily the goaltending coach. During his tenure, MSU produced two consecutive First Team All-American goalies. The Spartans also won the CCHA Championship in 1998 and advanced to the Frozen Four in 1999. Mitchell completed his masters at MSU in athletic administration and also served as the color commentator for all Spartan radio broadcasts.
A native of Windsor, Ontario, Mitchell was a goaltender at Northern Michigan where the team went on to capture the 1989 WCHA Playoff Championship. After two years at NMU, Mitchell played with the Canadian National Team in Calgary and then completed his undergraduate degree in sociology at the University of Western Ontario. After graduation in 1993, he joined the University of Colorado in Boulder. As the youngest coach in the ACHA, he compiled a three-year record of 38-36-2.
Mitchell’s primary responsibilities with the Catamounts will include: assisting in all recruiting, working with assistant coach Terry Lovelette to develop the UVM goalies, assisting coach Sneddon with the Catamount defensemen, penalty kill, video tape analysis and pre-scouting opponents.
Mitchell replaces Damian DiGiulian who resigned from his position this month.