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The North Wind

The North Wind

The North Wind

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Dallas Wiertella
Dallas Wiertella
Multimedia Editor

Through my experience here at the North Wind I have been able to have the privilege of highlighting students through all forms of multimedia journalism. Whether I'm in front or behind the camera, I aim...

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The North Wind is an independent student publication serving the Northern Michigan University community. It is partially funded by the Student Activity Fee. The North Wind digital paper is published daily during the fall and winter semesters except on university holidays and during exam weeks. The North Wind Board of Directors is composed of representatives of the student body, faculty, administration and area media.

Pizza Cat Vol. 10
Pizza Cat Vol. 10
Deirdre Northrup-RiestererApril 23, 2024

Additional Information: You can’t go home again

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NMU’s hockey team travels to East Lansing this weekend to take on Rick Comley and the Michigan State Spartans. Comley coached NMU from 1977 to 2002, so this game might mean a little extra to the Wildcats.

Here’s a look at some high-profile coaches who went up against their former teams.

Steve Spurrier

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Florida Gators

In 1966, a plucky little quarterback became the first Florida Gator to win the Heisman Trophy. Twenty-three years later Steve Spurrier returned to coach his alma mater and led them to a kind of dominance previously reserved for Steven Seagal over interchangeable redneck pool-hall villains. Spurrier won the SEC every year from 1993-1996. After a disastrous jump to the NFL, the Ole Ball Coach returned to the college ranks with South Carolina. There’s no question that Spurrier’s game has slipped since he returned to the Gamecocks, and watching the former King Midas lose to the doormats of the world has just gotten sad.

Winner: Florida

Spurrier is winless in two tries against the Gators.

Roy Williams

Kansas Jayhawks:

The back of Kansas’ commemorative state quarter is a picture of a buffalo and some sunflowers. I guess what I’m saying is there’s not a whole lot going on in the Sunflower State, so Kansans take their college basketball awfully seriously. Roy Williams was approaching golden god status during the 1990s when he led Kansas to nine Big 12 titles in 13 years. Despite turning down his alma mater’s head coaching vacancy in 2000, Williams made the jump to North Carolina three years later. Jayhawk fans were crushed, and Williams poured gallons of salt in the horribly gaping wound in 2005 by winning the NCAA National Championship with Carolina, something he never could at Kansas.

Winner: Tie

Williams got his title first, but the Jayhawks crushed his Tar Heels in last year’s Final Four on their way to a championship of their own.

Rick Comley

NMU Wildcats:

And the Rick Comley-Northern relationship brings us full-circle. As much as each of the coaches above meant to their respective teams, Comley was even more important as Northern’s first and most successful coach. For the first 25 years of Northern hockey, Comley was the face of the program, and led the Wildcats to their first and only national championship, in 1991. Thus far at Michigan State, Comley has won another national championship, in 2007. The man has a seriously impressive resume, too; during Comley’s coaching career, he has coached 10 Hobey Baker award finalists, 15 All-Americans, four league players of the year, 26 first team all-league selections and 83 academic all-league selections. The Spartans are again a strong team this season, at No. 12 in the country, and Northern knows they’ll be in for a fight this weekend. If last weekend’s performances against Michigan are any indication, the Wildcats could pull another upset like last season’s CCHA playoff run.

Winner: TBD

Find out this weekend. On Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m. in East Lansing, Comley’s Spartans play host to the Wildcats for their lone match-up of the season.

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