Eric Hoffberg, the winningest coach in RIT history, resigned today to pursue a position at the Division I or professional level.
Hoffberg was 188-82-22 in his ten-year career at RIT, including 47-7-7 the last two seasons. The Tigers made the Division III NCAA Tournament five times during his tenure, including a fourth-place finish this season.
Hoffberg was diplomatic about the reasons for his departure, but it was clear that he was frustrated with the RIT administration’s lack of interest in elevating the program to the Division I level.
“Many people don’t realize how many Division I players are at RIT,” he said. “I feel there’s a Division I level of play here, and that makes me want to coach Division I. If that could have happened at RIT, then I would have been here.
“If I want to be a Division I head coach, I need to make a move now to fill in some gaps that may exist in my resume,” Hoffberg indicated. He also said that he would entertain a position in the professional ranks if one became available.
Hoffberg said that he wants to be remembered as a “player’s coach” and that he hopes that his players have “taken a little bit of Hoff with them.”
RIT athletic director Lou Spiotti said that RIT will initiate a national search for a new head coach.
“I believe we will attract a really fine candidate,” he said. “We’ve been able to fill this position with good people in the past and we expect to do the same thing again.”
Former RIT coaches who moved into Division I include Brian Mason, who went on to coach at Dartmouth, former Union head coach Bruce Delventhal, and current Bowling Green coach Buddy Powers.