skip navigation

Charlie Holt - 2010 Legend of College Hockey

By Mackenzie Fraser, University of New Hampshire ‘12

Charlie Holt has without a doubt left a lasting impression on the college hockey world. Although he never thought of himself to be great, those he worked with and those that admired him certainly did.

“He never talked about winning,” said University of New Hampshire head coach Dick Umile. “He talked about playing the game.”

This says a lot about the true values that Holt coached by, what he strived for and how he ruled other aspects of his life. The way he led teams on the ice was carried into his personal life. Holt was an excellent father, friend, and made his mark in coaching student athletes.

Holt would help players get their equipment into the locker room, sharpen skates and was even spotted behind the wheel of the Zamboni. His day certainly did not end when the final horn sounded in the third period. His outstanding work ethic and his commitment to excellence are what leave his name echoing in the halls of college coaching legends.

“My dad once said ‘I can’t imagine I get paid to do this,’” said Holt’s daughter Brenda Holt-Mullaney. “He loved being surrounded by student-athletes.”

As the recipient of the 2010 Hobey Baker Legend of Hockey award Charlie Holt was recognized for his lengthy and outstanding service to college hockey. He will be recognized for his commitment at this year’s Hobey Baker Memorial Award banquet on May, 6 2010 in St. Paul Minn. Holt will be honored along with this year’s Hobey Baker Award winner Blake Geoffrion from the University of Wisconsin.

Even though Holt is remembered for many things including his trademark fedora, he is best remembered as a player, coach and innovator of the game of hockey. To some he is considered a student of the game. Many even say he was a visionary, utilizing strategies that had his UNH teams ahead of their time. However, Holt remained humble to compliments about the proficiency of his coaching because of his modesty and his beliefs that coaching was just as important as being a good husband and father.

“He had a knack for listening and giving advice, he looked at each athlete as a whole person, instead of just a player,” said Holt- Mullaney.

Holt’s coaching persona can be described as modest and giving. Holt understood that it took more than talent to be a great asset to the team, and surely carried this idea over into his own life.

Holt started his collegiate coaching career in 1962 with a sixyear stretch leading Colby College in Maine. He then made the move to Durham in 1968 steering the University of New Hampshire Wildcats to a 22-win season. He would remain with the Wildcats through the 1985-86 season, posting a total of 347 career wins at UNH in his 18 years behind the Wildcat bench.