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Badgers hire Minnesota State’s Mike Hastings as new HC

The Badgers made a significant hire to improve the hockey program on Thursday.

The Wisconsin Badgers have found their new men’s hockey head coach: Mark Hastings, who is stepping down from his position with the Minnesota State Mavericks to reportedly accept the same role with the Badgers.

Hastings, who possesses a 299-109-25 record over his 11 seasons with the Mavericks, comes to Madison with a distinguished legacy, having won eight conference championships, eight NCAA berths, two Frozen Fours, and a national championship.

Earlier this month, the Badgers announced that longtime coach Tony Granato would not return to the program after another losing season, ending the tenure of a predominant figure in Wisconsin.

With the hire, the Badgers have shied away from going with the internal approach in hiring head coaches, similar to their football program, when they elected to go with head coach Luke Fickell over internal candidates.

For reference, Hastings will be the first head coach of the team that wasn't an alum since Jeff Sauer in 2002.

In a press release, McIntosh praised Hastings’s career, adding that it’s a good fit for the direction of the program.

“I am incredibly excited about Mike Hastings becoming our men’s hockey coach,” McIntosh said. “He has a tremendous history of success at Minnesota State and, before that, with the Omaha Lancers. In my conversations with Mike, it is clear that he shares the values we have at Wisconsin and I know he is committed to the academic achievement and personal growth of our student-athletes. He is a great fit for our athletic department and I can’t wait for him to get started.”

Hastings shared a statement on his hire, expressing his excitement for the opportunity.

“Wisconsin is one of college hockey’s great programs and I am both thrilled and humbled to have this opportunity,” Hastings said. “I want to thank Chris McIntosh for his belief in me. Badger hockey has a lot going for it – great alums, fans, facilities, tradition, a terrific campus and city. I can’t wait to get to Madison and start working with our team on building a winning culture on and off the ice.”

Both Hastings and McIntosh are scheduled to speak with reporters at 5 p.m.