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MSU hockey's Tom Anastos stepping down as head coach

March 21, 2017
Head coach Tom Anastos thinks during the third period of the 52nd Annual Great Lakes Invitational semifinal game against Western Michigan on Dec. 29, 2016 at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit. The Spartans were defeated by the Broncos, 4-1.
Head coach Tom Anastos thinks during the third period of the 52nd Annual Great Lakes Invitational semifinal game against Western Michigan on Dec. 29, 2016 at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit. The Spartans were defeated by the Broncos, 4-1. —
Photo by Nic Antaya | and Nic Antaya The State News

Tom Anastos' tenure as head coach of the MSU hockey team is over. 

After six seasons, MSU athletic director Mark Hollis announced in a press release Tuesday, Anastos will step down from his position as head coach, effective immediately. 

As the search to find a new head coach begins, assistant coach Tom Newton will serve as interim head coach. 

"When I first became head coach I established my own timeline for the program’s development," Anastos said in the release. "After a review of our season, and in spite of the progress we have made in so many areas, we have not met my expectations. As a leader, I believe that you must always make every decision based on what’s in the overall best interests of the program, and never put personal interests first. After lengthy conversations with Mark Hollis, I am stepping down from my role to help facilitate a change in leadership and direction for Spartan hockey." 

At the helm of the Spartan hockey program, Anastos compiled a 78-122-24 overall record in six seasons. Anastos was able to guide the Spartans to a berth in the 2012 NCAA Tournament in his first season as head coach after a 19-16-4 record. 

"I want to thank Tom Anastos for the guidance he’s provided Spartan hockey over the last six seasons,” Hollis said. “He would be the first to admit that he wished there were more on-ice victories, but he built a program that was a great value to our community. His student-athletes were successful in the classroom and were great representatives of the athletic department and the university as a whole with their commitment to community outreach." 

Prior to becoming MSU's head coach, Anastos played for the Spartan hockey program from 1981-85. He served as an assistant coach under legendary coach Ron Mason from 1990-92 before being appointed the sixth head coach in MSU hockey history in 2011 after serving as the commissioner of the Central Collegiate Hockey Association, or CCHA, for 13 years. 

During his time in East Lansing, Anastos coached two All-Americans, two conference players of the year, 11 all-time conference selections and a Big Ten Medal of Honor recipient. 

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