Blashill, Kunitz named to Ferris State athletics hall of fame class of 2020

Jeff Blashill and Chris Kunitz will be part of the Ferris State athletics hall of fame class of 2020 (photos: Blashill/Ferris State Athletics, Kunitz/NHL).

Ferris State has announced its seven-member class for the school’s 2020 athletics hall of fame.

Two of the seven have hockey ties in former coach and goaltender Jeff Blashill and former forward Chris Kunitz.

An on-campus ceremony is tentatively planned for this fall.

The current head coach of the Detroit Red Wings, Blashill began his coaching career by spending three seasons (1999-02) as an assistant under head coach Bob Daniels at Ferris State before moving on to the professional ranks.

The former goaltender spent four seasons (1994-98) between the pipes for Ferris State, earning the Bulldogs’ Rookie of the Year award in 1994-95 and a spot on the CCHA’s All-Academic Team for 1996-97. He also garnered the Ferris State University President’s Award for three straight years for having the team’s highest-grade point average.

Blashill ranked among the top 15 netminders in school history with 27 career victories and his 78 games played in goal also ranked among the top 10 all-time in a FSU uniform. He’s also listed on the all-time charts with 1,666 career saves at Ferris State.

A four-time Stanley Cup Champion and Olympic gold medalist, Kunitz is regarded as perhaps the top player in school history and excelled during his 2002-03 senior season by picking up All-America First-Team honors while being among the final three 2003 finalists for the Hobey Baker Memorial Award.

A two-time (2001-02 and 2002-03) CCHA First Team selection, Kunitz became the first Bulldog skater to earn CCHA Player of the Year honors after leading the league in points, goals, assists, and plus/minus for the 2002-03 campaign.

Kunitz concluded his stellar career ranking tied for sixth in career points (175), second in goals (99) and 18th in assists (76) in 152 contests.

He then spent 15 seasons and 1,022 regular-season games with the Anaheim Ducks, Pittsburgh Penguins, Tampa Bay Lightning and Chicago Blackhawks, compiling 619 points on 268 goals and 351 assists along with 27 goals and 66 assists for 93 points in 178 playoff games.

Kunitz was also the only player in the past 50 NHL seasons to win two or more Stanley Cups, win an Olympic gold medal, become an NHL All-Star and finish as a plus on-ice player every year of his career upon retirement in 2019.