Mel Pearson obviously made the right decision when he became Michigan Tech’s head hockey coach last year.
Pearson, an assistant coach at Michigan for 23 years, would have had to wait until he was age 57 before he had a chance to get the top job with the Wolverines.
Pearson will have five years of head coaching experience when Berenson’s new four-year deal concludes when he turns 76 … if he decided to retire then.
Pearson quickly made a name for himself at Tech, guiding the Huskies to a 16-19-4 record and WCHA Final Five spot after they finished 4-30-4 the previous season.
Pearson was honored as the WCHA Coach of the Year for turning Tech’s program around. The Huskies averaged nearly a goal more than the previous season (2.83 from 1.97).
Pearson and his staff have brought in a strong recruiting class, led by Edmonton Oilers’ third-round pick Jujhar Khaira and Jamie Phillips, a seventh-round pick of the Winnipeg Jets.
Khaira, a 6-foot-3, 195-pound power forward, had 29 goals and 79 points in 54 games last season for Prince George of the BCHL.
Pearson, who played for Tech in the late ’70s and early ’80s, will guide the Huskies against Berenson and the Wolverines at Comerica Park Dec. 28 in the Great Lakes Invitational semifinal. It will be the first time the two men aren’t on the same bench during an outdoor game.