Shannon Miller, former head coach of the Canadian Olympic women’s ice hockey team, has agreed to become the first coach of the nascent women’s varsity team at the University of Minnesota-Duluth. The UMD squad will compete on a club level next season, then move into an independent varsity schedule in 1999-2000.
Miller, 34, led Canada to the silver medal at the 1998 Olympics and to a fourth straight gold at the previous year’s world championships. She was an assistant coach on the national team at the 1992 and 1994 Olympics.
A native of Melfort, Sask., Miller competed in four Canadian national championships as a player before retiring in 1989. She is a 1985 graduate of the University of Saskatchewan, and from 1988-96 was employed as a police officer in Calgary, Alb. She has been president of the Southern Alberta Women’s Hockey League and chairperson of the Saskatchewan Female Hockey League in addition to refereeing hockey for three years (1982-85) at the collegiate level.
“We are extremely excited to have Shannon take on the challenge of building our women’s hockey program,” said Minnesota-Duluth director of intercollegiate athletics Bob Corran.
Miller reportedly signed a three-year contract valued at a total of $225,000.