Ohio State has added a trio of coaches to its staff.
Buckeye alums Dustin Carlson and Dave Caruso will serve as the team’s volunteer assistant coach and goaltending consultant, respectively, while Lee Harris is the team’s conditioning coach.
“We are excited to have Dusty, Dave and Lee join our program, and it is especially nice to welcome back two alums,” OSU coach Steve Rohlik said in a statement. “They all add important elements to the development process of our student-athletes.”
Carlson played in 71 games for OSU from 2008 to 2011 and ranks sixth in program history with a career 2.71 GAA. His save percentage of .913 is tied for fifth in program history and he posted two of the top 10 single-season marks (.917 in 2009, .916 in 2010). His 21 wins in 2009, including four shutouts, are the fourth highest for a Buckeye and that season he had 1,014 saves, the fifth highest in a single campaign, and played 2206:15 between the pipes, the fourth-most in a single year for the Buckeyes.
He is currently finishing his degree at Ohio State through the athletics department’s degree completion program.
“Last year was my first year away from the game of hockey and I am grateful to Coach Rohilk and the staff for allowing me to get involved again,” Carlson said in a statement. “I am honored and privileged to be with the program. I look forward to helping the current Buckeyes while I wrap up my degree.”
Caruso was between the pipes for the Buckeyes from 2003 to20 06, playing in 96 games and posting 52 wins, tying for third in program history in career victories. He is the program’s all-time leader in career GAA (2.07), had a program-record 1.97 GAA in 2004 and shares the team’s career shutout record with 11. A two-time All-CCHA Honorable Mention selection, he backstopped the Buckeyes to the 2004 CCHA tournament title and earned a spot on the All-Tournament Team that season. A winner of the Big Ten Sportsmanship Award, he was voted Team MVP by his teammates twice.
Following his Ohio State career, Caruso spent six years as a professional goaltender in the Atlanta Thrashers and New Jersey Devils organizations, playing in the AHL and ECHL. He also spent two years as the goalie coach for the Albany Devils in the Devils’ organization. He currently runs Caruso Hockey in Central Ohio, working with all age groups and levels. Caruso earned his Ohio State degree in 2006.
“I am thankful for the opportunity to be involved with the team and be able to give back to the program and university that have given me so much,” Caruso said. “I am excited to learn from the coaches and their vast knowledge of the game. I’d like to thank Coach Rohlik and Ohio State for allowing me to be a part of the program in this way.”
Harris brings a unique hockey and figure skating background to the Buckeyes as the team’s conditioning coach. He focuses on proper body awareness and technique, running the Buckeyes through drills to build on their existing foundation, helping them add new aspects to their skating and fitness. He has worked with players from all ages and skill levels, from youth to the NHL.
Harris was competing internationally for Canada in figure skating and playing Canadian junior hockey by age 17. In 2000, he moved to Hartford, Conn., to focus on his figure skating and he was the 2002 national junior champion and competed in the 2002 Junior World Championships, retiring from competitive figure skating in 2006. His career coaching skating skills started in Hartford and he moved to Columbus in 2011, where he currently runs the Lee Harris Skating System.