John Mayasich, considered by many to be the greatest American-born hockey player of all time, has been chosen as the recipient of the 2006 Lou Lamoriello Award.
The award, named after the former Providence College player and coach — and current New Jersey Devils president and coach — honors a former member of the college hockey community who has forged a unique career after college hockey.
Mayasich enjoyed an outstanding career as one of the top broadcast executives in the region. A University of Minnesota graduate, Mayasich entered the broadcast industry with a sales position at KSTP Radio in 1957. He moved to WFRV TV in Green Bay, Wisconsin, in 1959 and later became sales manager at WDUZ Radio in Green Bay.
He returned to Hubbard Broadcasting in 1974, and became general manager of KS95 FM, making it the highest-rated FM station in the top 30 US markets. In 1983, he began a 12-year term as president of the radio division of Hubbard Broadcasting, later serving as head of public relations. He retired in 1997, but remains active as a consultant to Hubbard Broadcasting.
Widely respected among his peers in the industry, he served for nine years on the board of directors of the Minnesota Broadcasters Association, and was its president for 1993 to 1994.
As a player, Mayasich excelled like few others. Here are just a few of his on-ice accomplishments:
• Led Eveleth High School to four straight Minnesota high school championships from 1948-1951, never losing a single high school game in four years.
• Set numerous high school tournament records, ten of which still stood nearly 50 years later.
• Led the University of Minnesota to two NCAA championship games (1953 and 1954.)
• Set numerous University of Minnesota records, including goals (144) and points (298), which still stand.
• Won silver (1956) and gold (1960) medals as a member of two U.S. Olympic teams.
• Played on various U.S. National Teams up through 1966, 11 years after graduating from college.
• Named one of the WCHA’s Top 50 Players in 50 Years in 2002-03 and named WCHA’s All-Time Best Player in the 50th Anniversary Issue of The Hockey News in 1997.
The previous winners of the Lamoriello Award are Tom “Red” Martin of Boston College (2005) and Lamoriello himself (2005). The award will be presented at an April 7 luncheon during the 2006 NCAA Frozen Four weekend in Milwaukee, Wis.