Men's Ice Hockey Coaches
Hometown: East Providence, Rhode
Education: Brown, 1994, B.A. , Organizational Behavior and Management
Coaching Experience: Head Coach, Brown University, 2009-present
Assistant Coach, Dartmouth College, 1998-2009
Assistant Coach, Brown University, 1997-1998
Assistant Coach, Colby College, 1996-1997
Volunteer Assistant Coach, Brown University, 1994-1996
East Providence native, Brendan Whittet, a 1994 graduate of Brown
University, and an assistant coach at Dartmouth for 11 years, was
named the 15th head men's hockey coach at Brown in July of 2009. He
will begin his third season behind the Brown bench in
“I am absolutely delighted to have Brendan Whittet return to Brown as our head coach,” said Director of Athletics Michael Goldberger. “Brendan has a proven record of accomplishment as an assistant coach and brings a strong passion for Brown to our program. He had tremendous success as a player at Brown and has the knowledge and skills to guide the team to the same level of achievement that he experienced as a player. I know that Brendan learned from one of the best coaches in the league in Bob Gaudet at Brown and Dartmouth, and we are thrilled to welcome him back to Brown.”
A 15-year veteran of the college coaching ranks, Whittet spent the 11 seasons prior to joining Brown as an assistant on the Dartmouth College staff, helping to guide the Big Green to the 2006 ECAC Regular Season Championship and the 2007 Ivy League Championship. During Whittet’s tenure on the Dartmouth staff, the Big Green were perennially ranked among the nation’s elite, posting seven straight winning seasons (2000-2007) and 166 wins from 1998-2009.
“I am so thankful to have the opportunity to be the head hockey coach at Brown University,” said Whittet. “I would especially like to thank Mike Goldberger, Bob Kenneally, and the search committee for this wonderful opportunity. As a Brown alum and a Rhode Island native, my family and I are ecstatic to be heading home. I loved my time at Brown as a student-athlete and as an assistant coach and have a true appreciation for the positive impact that the University can play in one’s life.
“One of my goals when I got into the coaching profession (17) years ago was to position myself to ultimately return to Brown as its head coach. That dream is now a reality. I am ready to attack the job with tenacity, dedication, passion and positive energy to return the Bears’ hockey program to the top of both the ECAC and the NCAA.”
Whittet's first season at Brown produced immediate dividends, as he guided the Bears to one of their most successful seasons in recent history. Brown won 13 games, the most since winning 16 during the 2004-05 season. Under Whittet's guidance, the Bears improved nearly every facet of their game offensively, while advancing to the ECAC Championship Tournament after finishing the regular season in 11th. Along the way during their historic playoff run, the Bears upset sixth-seeded Rensselaer in the First Round, before upsetting top-seeded and 6th-ranked Yale in the Quarterfinals. Brown closed out its first season under Whittet by finishing third in the League with a 3-0 shutout over St. Lawrence in the third place game.
Individually, tri-captain Jordan Pietrus ’10 was the national recipient of the Derek Hines Unsung Hero Award. Established by the HCA in honor of former Army player Derek Hines, who was a “consummate team player and team builder,” the award recognizes the collegiate player who embodies Hines’ spirit and relentless commitment.
Aaron Volpatti ’10 and Jeff
Buvinow ’12 were named All-Ivy, while Volpatti also earned
All-ECAC honors and was a finalist for the ECAC’s Best
Defensive Forward Award. Volpatti, who signed an NHL contact with
Vancouver at the conclusion of the season, also earned Academic
All-Ivy and CoSIDA Academic All-District honors.
In 2010-11, Whittet improved the Bears' regular season positioning from 11th to 9th and the Bears were in the hunt for a first round home series until the final weekend of the season. Whittet and his staff guided Brown to many big wins, including a 6-1 victory over #10 Boston University, a pair of ties with #6 UNH (5-5) and #2 Boston University (4-4), and a 3-2 win over #1 Yale, Brown's first-ever modern era win over a team ranked #1 in the Country. The Bears also swept Colgate and Cornell in the same season for the first time ever.
Individually, Harry Zolnierczyk ’11 was named the Ivy League Player of the Year and earned First Team All-Ivy honors, while Dennis Robertson ’14, a 2011 draft pick of the Toronto Maple Leafs (6th round) was named Second Team All-Ivy. Jack Maclellan ’12 (Second Team) and Robertson (All-Rookie) were both named All-ECAC at the conclusion of the season. Zolnierczyk, who signed an NHL contract with Philadelphia at the conclusion of the season, was also named CoSIDA Academic All-District.
While at Dartmouth, Whittet was involved in many aspects of running the program including recruiting, video analysis, off-ice skill development, NCAA compliance issues, working primarily with the Dartmouth defensemen, and overseeing the team’s penalty-killing unit. Whittet helped lead the program to a tremendous resurgence, as the Big Green were perennially ranked in the top-20 and posted four seasons with at least 18 wins, including two 20-win seasons. Dartmouth also appeared regularly in the ECAC Tournament, making semi-final appearances in 2001, 2003, 2004, 2006, and 2007. Under Whittet’s guidance, the defensive unit saw a similar transformation, reaching a milestone during the 2004-05 season when the team recorded its lowest goals against average in 44 years. Dartmouth allowed 2.37 goals per game that placed the defensive unit among the elite teams nationally. A similar trend can be seen in the penalty kill. The 2004-05 unit finished with an 86.1 percent kill ratio that placed statistically in the top 10 in the country.
Before his arrival at Dartmouth, Whittet’s teams at Brown and Colby both experienced success. In 1995, his first season coaching the Bears, Brown won the Ivy League Title. In 1996-97 Colby finished with a 19-6-1 record and captured the ECAC East Playoff Championship. Whittet then returned to Brown for one more season, helping to lead the Bears to a fourth place finish during the ECAC Regular Season, after finishing in 12th the year before.
For 12 summers, Whittet worked for the New England District at various USA Hockey Select Summer Festivals, serving as an assistant coach in the summer of 2008 for the US Under-17 National Select Team that competed in the 5 Nations Tournament, held in Prievidza, Slovakia. Whittet has also been the head coach for the New England Select-16 team that participated in the 2000 USA Festival that went undefeated in the tournament. Whittet also serves as a member of the New England Select coaching staff that works with elite New England players ranging in age from 13-18.
A former defenseman at Brown, Whittet was a four-year letterwinner. He appeared in 74 games and helped lead the Bears to an Ivy League title in 1992, two trips to the ECAC Final Four Championship in 1993 and 1994, and an NCAA at-large tournament team selection in 1993.
During Whittet’s high school career he was a two-time Rhode Island all-state and all-league selection at perennial powerhouse Mount St. Charles. He was named the Rhode Island Defensive Player of the Year in 1988-89. Whittet also played for Southern New England in the Junior Olympics in 1989, before heading to the Kent School for a postgraduate year.
This is Whittet’s second head coaching position at Brown, as early in his career, while an assistant coach for the Brown hockey team, Whittet was also the head men’s golf coach.
Whittet, his wife, Karen, are the parents of two daughters, Peyton and Addyson.
• Whittet is the 15th head coach in the 112-year history of the Brown men’s hockey program
• Whittet is the 3rd Brown hockey alum to be named Head Coach of the men’s hockey team, joining Wescott E.S. Moulton ’31 (1948-52), Donald F. Whiston ’51 (1953-55), and J. Allan Soares ’60 (1971-74)
• Whittet is one of 11 Brown alumni on the current Brown athletic department staff, joining Bianca Aboubakare ’11 (Women's Tennis Assistant Coach), Paul Cooke ’89 (Men’s Crew Head Coach), Colleen Kelly ’06 (Women’s Basketball Assistant Coach), Bob Kenneally ’90 (Associate Athletic Director), Mike Martin ’04 (Men's Basketball Head Coach), Keely McDonald ’00 (Women’s Lacrosse Head Coach), Phoebe Murphy ’80 (Women’s Crew Assistant Coach), Catherine Starr (Women's Crew Assistant Coach), Lars Tiffany ’90 (Men’s Lacrosse Head Coach), and Steve Ziogas ’09 (Football Defensive Assistant).
Whittet Year-by-Year Results
|Season||Overall||ECAC Hockey (finish)||Ivy League (finish)|
|2010||13-20-4||6-12-4 (11th)||2-7-1 (t-5th)|
|2011||10-16-5||8-12-2 (9th)||4-6-0 (4th)|
|2012||9-18-5||5-13-4 (12th)||2-6-2 (6th)|
|Position:||Associate Head Coach|
Mark White joined the Brown staff as an assistant hockey coach in September of 2009 after spending four years as an assistant coach at Bentley, where he was responsible for all aspects of helping coach the team, including recruiting, practice planning, video breakdown, and assisting with alumni events and relations.
White was promoted to Associate Head Coach at Brown during the summer of 2011.
Prior to his stint at Bentley, White served as an assistant
coach of both the JV and Varsity hockey teams at Reading Memorial
High School for the 2004-05 season.
A 2001 graduate of the University of New Hampshire, White was a key member of the Wildcat blueline corps during his four years in Durham. In his sophomore year, he was part of the UNH Squad that faced Maine in the NCAA Championship Game. The following season as a junior, White led all Wildcat defensemen in scoring with 14 points. He was elected an assistant captain by his teammates for his senior year and graduated after making 133 career appearances.
Following his graduation from UNH, White signed a professional contract to play with the Johnstown Chiefs of the ECHL. He appeared in 72 games in his only season with the Chiefs and was named the team’s Most Improved Player. The following season, he moved on to play for the Orlando Seals of the ACHL. He served as team captain for two seasons and was named the ACHL Outstanding Defenseman of 2003 after recording 54 points in 59 games. His last stint as a professional came for the Florida Everblades of the ECHL, where he finished the final months of the 2003-04 season after leaving the Seals.
A native of Woburn, MA, White earned a B.A. in Sociology from UNH. He currently resides in Providence with his wife, Jamie, and their daughter, Emily.
Mike Souza joined Brendan Whittet’s ’94 staff as an assistant coach in 2011. Souza came to Brown after a successful professional playing career, having competed in both the AHL and internationally.
“He’s someone that our guys will lean on because he’s played at such a high level,” said Whittet. “From my side of it, he’s an unbelievably personable guy, he knows everybody. He’s well-connected in the hockey world. I’m very excited. I don’t think we’re going to miss a beat.”
Souza spent the last five seasons playing in Italy, most recently with Bolzano after four seasons with SG Cortina. In his first season with Cortina (2005-06), Souza helped lead the Sharks to the team’s first Championship dating back to 1975. From 2008-2011, he was also on the Italian national team, participating in the IIHF World Championship all three years and wining the Division I gold medal in both 2009 and 2011. In 2010, Souza and Team Italy participated in the Elite Division at the World Championships, as Souza led Team Italy in scoring with 5 points (1g, 4a).
A graduate of New Hampshire with a B.S. in Kinesiology, Souza was a four-year member of the Wildcats’ hockey team, where he finished with 156 career points (66g, 90a) in 156 games. A teammate of Brown Associate Head Coach Mark White at New Hampshire, Souza was a part of two NCAA Frozen Four teams, scoring a key goal in the third period of the 1999 National Championship against Maine. He was named to the All-Regional Team in 1999 as well as the 1999 All-Tournament Team after leading the Frozen Four in scoring with six points.
As a senior in 2000, Souza captained the Wildcats and was a Hockey East Second Team All-Star that same year, while also earning New England All-Star honors. He finished his senior season second on the team in scoring with 40 points (15g, 25a) and won both the Charles E. Holt Coaches Award and the UNH Jim Urquhart Award, given to a UNH senior student-athlete who excels in both athletic competition and the classroom, as well as possessing great character, sportsmanship, and a passion for sports.
Following his playing career at UNH, Souza played in the AHL for three full seasons with the Norfolk Admirals (2000-2003) and the Bridgeport Sound Tigers (2002-2003). From 2003-2005, Souza spent time in both the AHL and ECHL, playing for the Portland Pirates, Sound Tigers, and Hersey Bears. From 2002-2004, Souza was the Sound Tigers’ player representative for the Professional Hockey Players’ Association.
A 1997 draft pick of the Chicago Blackhawks (67th
overall), Souza began playing in Europe in 2005, competing for the
Cologne Sharks of the Deutsche Eishockey Liga, EHC Basel of the
Swiss National League A, and EHC Olton of the Swiss National League
B. In 2006, he moved to Italy to play in the Serie A, where he
spent the next five years, finishing with 194 points (90g, 104a) in
A native of Wakefield, MA, Souza was inducted into the Wakefield High School Hall of Fame in 2009. He is the cousin of Paul Thompson, who was the 2011 Hockey East Player of the Year, while at UNH and is currently playing in the AHL.
Souza and his wife, Kelly (formerly McManus), have two young daughters, Ella and Ava. Kelly captained the Boston College women’s hockey team in 2001 and is the older sister of Brown alumnae Krissy, a four-year member of the Bears’ women’s hockey team, and Kim, who is married to Chris Bourque, son of Ray Bourque and current member of the Washington Capitals.
Hometown: Johnston, Rhode Island Education: Rhode Island College, 1979, B.S., History and Education Coaching Experience: Assistant Coach, Brown University, 1997-2008; present Assistant Coach, Mt. St. Charles Academy, 1981-91
Goalie Consultant Tony Ciresi returns to the Brown staff for his
second stint, after serving as a valuable asset on the coaching
staff from 1997-2008.
The former goaltending coach of USA Hockey and currently a teacher at Woonsocket High School, Ciresi's connections to Brown extend well beyond his playing days at Ivy-rival Pennsylvania, where he was the Most Valuable Player of the 1973 squad as a goalie.
Following his playing career at Penn, Ciresi completed his degree in History and Education at Rhode Island College in 1979. He was an assistant coach at nearby Mount Saint Charles Academy from 1981-91, where his main responsibility was coaching the goalies, helping to develop such names as Garth Snow of the Islanders and former Brown standout Brian Audette '97. While coaching at the Mount, his teams won 10 consecutive state championships, and four times were honored as the national champions. He also coached future Brown athletes Derek Chauvette '93, Scott Hanley '93, and current head coach Brendan Whittet '94 at Mount.
Yann Danis '04, who signed an NHL contract with Montreal following the conclusion of the 2004 season, was the seventh goalie coached by Ciresi to sign an NHL contract. Others include Brian Eklund '02, of the Bruins, Brian Boucher of the Coyotes, and Garth Snow of the Islanders.
Ciresi and his wife, Anne, reside in Johnston. They are the parents of one son, Tony, 28.