WORCESTER, Mass. — Holy Cross coach Paul Pearl has resigned to become director of admissions and head hockey coach at Milton (Mass.) Academy, a top-tier prep school.
Pearl was the head coach at Holy Cross for eight years, guiding his team to a 116-114-19 record. His brightest moment came in 1998 when Holy Cross captured the inaugural MAAC championship on home ice.
Pearl cited family reasons for making the career move.
“It’s about a lifestyle for my family,” said Pearl. “[Holy Cross] is great. But the lifestyle itself, and the way I’ve approached my job at Holy Cross, I don’t think is right to do with a three-year old and a one-year old [child].”
The decision comes amid a state of turmoil in the MAAC, with members slated to vote today over what the league’s governance structure will be next year.
That, though, Pearl said, held no bearing on his decision to move to Milton.
“It has nothing to do with it,” said Pearl. “I think the MAAC may not be called the MAAC but it’s going to be a good league and continue to get better. But, that has absolutely nothing to do with [my decision].”
The decision itself was a tough one said Pearl, and made in the 11th hour.
“I’d been thinking about it three weeks and they gave me an extra three days to think about it,” Pearl said. “I used every minute I could to think about it.”
As for what the future holds, Pearl hopes it can be a long one with Milton Academy.
“I plan on being there for a long, long time,” said Pearl.
Milton is a 12-year school so the option remains whether or not he will send his own children there once they reach grade-school level.
“It seems like a great place,” Pearl said. “It’s working with kids and I’m coaching. But my main job there is in the admissions department.”
Milton Academy is a Division Independent Schools League team in Massachusetts. The ISL is highly thought of in athletics, particularly in hockey, though the hockey program at Milton has lacked extreme success lately.
“The school is interested in being good,” said Pearl. “Obviously, it’s a different game [at Milton] and a different situation.
“[At Holy Cross], you think hockey 24 hours a day. But, still, [Milton] is interested in being good.”
As for a replacement for Pearl at Holy Cross, the coaching carousel may continue to turn. The Cross and Union, with Kevin Sneddon’s recent departure, are the two schools at the Division I level currently searching for a coach.
To Pearl, though, he’s set on the idea that his replacement should be current assistant coach Terrance Butt.
“I think [Terrence] should be the next coach,” said Pearl. “I think he’d do a great job with this program.”