OXFORD, Ohio - Miami Hockey has completed its coaching staff for the 2012-13 season after head coach Enrico Blasi announced Tuesday that Tommy Hill will serve as the RedHawks' volunteer assistant coach. He replaces Brian Kaufman, who served in that role in 2011-12 while earning his master's degree in business administration and is now an assistant coach with the Omaha Lancers in the USHL.
Hill, a native of Portage, Mich., will help break down game film, assist in skill development with players and contribute to in-game strategy. He will also coordinate the Junior RedHawks program, among other duties. Hill will also work towards his master's degree in sport studies while at Miami.
"We're excited to have Tommy join our staff," Blasi said. "He has played at the highest level of collegiate hockey and his experience as both a player and leader will be valuable to us this season."
Hill, a four-year member of the Ferris State hockey team from 2008-12, served as co-captain this past season, leading the Bulldogs to their first ever Frozen Four and a berth in the national championship game. He also helped guide them to the program's second CCHA regular-season title last year.
A defenseman his first three years before moving to forward as a senior, Hill played in 61 career games as a Bulldog, including a career-high 24 this past season. He blocked 30 shots during his FSU career while firing 36. He finished his bachelor's degree in finance this past spring.
Hill was honored with the NCAA Elite 89 award in April, which recognizes the true essence of the student-athlete by honoring the individual who has reached the pinnacle of competition at the national championship level in his or her sport, while also achieving the highest academic standard among his or her peers. It is presented to the student-athlete with the highest cumulative grade-point average participating at the finals site for each of the NCAA's 89 championships.
Among Hill's other awards are the FSU Blue Line Competitive Award, which he won as a junior for being the top competitor on the team on a daily basis. The award was voted on by his teammates. He earned the Bulldogs' Most Improved Player Award as a sophomore and has been given the FSU Dean's Academic Award three times during his career.
With Hill's announcement as volunteer coach, Miami's 2012-13 coaching staff is now complete, led by Blasi, who enters his 14th season at the helm. Brent Brekke enters his third season as the associate head coach and fifth as an assistant coach, Nick Petraglia begins his second season as an assistant coach and Matt Cady remains as the strength and conditioning coach for the hockey team. Brad Aldrich was named Miami's director of hockey operations earlier this summer.
The RedHawks open their 2012-13 season Oct. 7 with an exhibition game against Western Ontario.