Ferris State coach Bob Daniels has been named the winner of the 2012 Spencer Penrose Award as the top coach in Division I men’s hockey, the American Hockey Coaches Association announced Wednesday.

It is the second such honor for Daniels, who was named the nation’s top coach in 2003 when he led the Bulldogs to their first NCAA tournament appearance.

Ferris State is making its second appearance this season, and Daniels led it to the Frozen Four. The Bulldogs play Union on Thursday in Tampa, Fla.

Daniels’ Ferris State team was picked for ninth in the CCHA by the league’s coaches before the season, but it won the regular season title and carries a 25-11-5 record into the Frozen Four.

Ferris State assistant coach Drew Famulak also is being recognized by the AHCA this year as the recipient of the Terry Flanagan Award, which recognizes an assistant coach’s body of work.

The runners-up for the Spencer Penrose Award were Massachusetts-Lowell’s Norm Bazin and Union’s Rick Bennett.

  • tape

    Norm Bazin engineered the best turnaround for a first-year coach in NCAA history. Giving the Penrose to anyone else makes a mockery of the award.

    • TruthHurts

      tape-I agree with you 100%

      Bazin comes in April of 2011, doesn’t even really get an opportunity to recruit players who could make an impact for the 2011-12 season.

      Takes a team with 5 wins in the previous season, gets them to the show in his first year, third in the East

      Now that is “coaching”.  Just imagine what he could do if he has a couple of years of successful recruiting.

      What he did, based on what he had to work and with in the time frame of less than a year is incrediable.  Not trying to put down Danials, its just not even a close comparison

  • tape

    Ferris State went from a winning record to a better winning record. Lowell went from the third worst record in D-I hockey to 24 wins.

    Ferris State won 7 more games in 2011-12 than in 2010-11. Lowell won 19 more.

    Ferris State improved their winning percentage .145. Lowell’s winning percentage improved .439.

    And, again, this was Norm Bazin’s FIRST year not just at Lowell, but as a D-I head coach. Daniels has been coaching Ferris State since 1992.

  • Rich

    How is Bazin not coach of the year? Rick Bennett was more deserving than Daniels. Just because Ferris is in the frozen four doesn’t make his coaching better than those two!

    • Dennygt

      If you need some cheese for that ‘whine’ go to Wisconsin.

    • Unionguy

       I agree, and as a Union guy, I wanted Bennett to win, but I still think Bazin deserved it more than anyone considering the turnaround.  Only way I see them justifying Daniels is that Ferris State won the regular season of the strongest conference (based on most NCAA tourny competitors) and advanced to the Frozen Four, notwithstanding that his team was outed from the CCHA tourny by that tourny’s lowest seed.  Then again, Lehman won last year after Union lost to 12th seeded Colgate in the ECAC quarters, then got outplayed by UMD in the NCAA first round.

    • Gophers4Eva

      Right. And I thought that post-season success wasn’t included in the consideration — am I wrong?

  • bob

    for bennett to duplicate and better leaman’s acheivements form a year before, getting to the frozen four for union and winning the whitelaw cup, neither of which leaman did, this guy s/h/b hands down the winner

    • aznman08

      your using the same reason except that Bazin engineered 19 more wins with a team that was “given” mostly unknowns to him. apparently being the number 1 seed and getting knocked out in quarterfinals of the CCHA tournament doesn’t mean anything. 
      would be interesting to see on what criteria they gave it for. 

  • Guest

    Any coach who has even won this award needs to return them because, clearly, they are worthless.  Sorry Norm, real fans know what you did at Lowell this year.

  • Gophers4Eva

    Agreed with what the others have said.  For Coach Bazin of Lowell to not win this award is just a travesty.  This is embarrassing.