Yost Arena ice rink named to honor longtime hockey coach Red Berenson


Red Berenson was honored for his 33 seasons of coaching Michigan ice hockey Thursday when the rink inside Yost Arena was officially named the Red Berenson Rink at Yost Ice Arena.

The Board of Regents approved an addition to the historic arena’s naming structure at its monthly meeting, which took place on the UM-Flint campus.

“Red Berenson is a legend in the sport of ice hockey, a tremendous educator of young men and someone who has made a significant impact at the University of Michigan,” said Warde Manuel, the Donald R. Shepherd Director of Athletics.

“He has dedicated much of his adult life to develop hundreds of young men here at Michigan. This is an honor befitting his exceptional commitment to intercollegiate athletics and his championship success in the sport of hockey as both a player and a coach.”

Regent Katherine White congratulates Red Berenson at Thursday’s meeting. (Photo by Roger Hart, Michigan Photography)

The regents agreed with Manuel’s assessment and unanimously approved naming the rink in Berenson’s honor.

The new ice design will be unveiled ahead of this weekend’s home opener as the Wolverines host the University of Vermont with a two-game set starting at 7:30 p.m. Friday. The rink will be formally dedicated Jan. 5, 2018, when the Wolverines host Notre Dame.

The Red Berenson Rink at Yost Ice Arena features the longtime ice hockey coach’s signature on either side of the ice. Click the image to view a larger version.

Gordon “Red” Berenson came to U-M first as a student-athlete and later as its head ice hockey coach for 33 seasons. Berenson received a bachelor’s degree in 1962 and a Master of Business Administration degree in 1966 from U-M, completing the latter degree while excelling on the ice as a professional hockey player.

At U-M, Berenson was a two-time All-American, the 1962 WCHA Most Valuable Player and team captain. Following graduation, his National Hockey League career spanned 17 years and included winning the Stanley Cup as a member of the Montreal Canadiens in 1965 and 1966. He went on to coach in the NHL for three years and won the Jack Adams Award for NHL Coach of the Year in 1981.

Upon returning to Michigan in 1984 as the head ice hockey coach, Berenson immediately brought Michigan hockey back to the forefront of the NCAA, guiding the Wolverines to national championships in 1996 and 1998 while winning 21 conference championships.

The fourth all-time winningest NCAA ice hockey coach, Berenson posted a record of 848-426-92. He developed two Hobey Baker Memorial Award winners — Brendan Morrison in 1997, and Kevin Porter in 2008 — 140 Academic All-Big Ten selections and five Big Ten Distinguished Scholars.

While he retired from coaching after the 2016-17 season, Berenson continues to serve the department as he works to fulfil his goal of endowing all Michigan Ice Hockey Scholarships. Current financial commitments exceed $20 million.



  1. Steve Viert
    on November 1, 2017 at 1:17 pm

    Coach Berenson elevated the excellent traditions and reputation of Michigan Hockey over his career and naming the rink after him is modest in comparison to his achievements. As a long time hockey player from Michigan (’74) who skated on the first Yost ice, I have followed Michigan Hockey since the late 60s. I cannot envision a coach who has done more for his sport or his teams than coach Berenson. “Hail to the Victors”

  2. Tom Owen
    on November 4, 2017 at 12:33 am

    It’s great to honor Red like this, he truly deserves it. However, I am disappointed by the commercial logos on the ice. I thought “M” was above that!

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