Amherst, MA (New Haven Register) — Despite reports that he was ready to leave for a position with a Hockey East program, Quinnipiac men’s hockey coach Rand Pecknold is staying put.
Sources told the Register that Pecknold, head coach at Quinnipiac since 1994, was contacted by the University of Massachusetts over the weekend. UMass offered Pecknold its head coaching position. Quinnipiac came back with a better contract offer, which Pecknold accepted on Monday.
It ended a strange day at Quinnipiac. A report by College Hockey News surfaced early in the afternoon stating Pecknold was “ready to accept” the UMass offer. That set off some Internet fireworks, which got as far as speculation on fan sites as to who would be the next coach at Quinnipiac.
But a source close to the situation said Pecknold never gave any indication he was ready to accept the offer from UMass. Quinnipiac made an aggressive counter-offer, and Pecknold accepted on Monday afternoon. Terms of the new contract are unknown, but sources said Quinnipiac’s offer will almost certainly top the numbers UMass had put on the table.
Don “Toot” Cahoon resigned last month after 12 seasons at UMass.
Pecknold is all but an institution at Quinnipiac, despite the fact that at 44 he’s still considered young by college head coaching standards. He will begin his 19th season in Hamden in the fall. Expectations are high thanks to a strong nucleus of returning players and solid recruiting class.
During Pecknold’s tenure, Quinnipiac elevated the program to Division I, upgraded from Atlantic Hockey to the ECAC and built a state-of-the-art facility which rates among the best in the Northeast.