Sean Hogan is in his second season as Arizona hockey coach, but it’s his first full year after being hired to replace longtime head coach Leo Golembiewski prior to last season. With a year under his belt, he was able to assemble his first schedule and recruiting class this offseason. The Wildcats first game will be on Sept. 21 against NAU.
He spoke with the Daily Wildcat on Monday about his boxing career, Rich Rodriguez and much more.
Daily Wildcat: How does the start of last year compare to the start of this year for you personally?
Sean Hogan: I’m a lot less frazzled this year, I was hired late last year, there was a lot going on. I’ve had a whole year to prepare. We’ve got a lot more accomplished, a lot more behind the scenes stuff’s been accomplished this year then it was last year. The one thing we are facing, we’re going to have a little bit of adversity with, is that they are putting in the new seats at the (Tucson Convention Center). So we are going to start a little later than we ideally would like, but that’s just something that you have to overcome, that adversity, and make sure that you take positive steps forward with things like that. But I am definitely excited for the season. I think we’ve got a high caliber team and should be able to make some noise this year.
I saw that you were a Golden Gloves champ…
Not a champ (laughs). Definitely not a champ. Yeah, one of the sports I did growing up was boxing. Fought in the Golden Gloves tournament in my weight class for my gym. The one I did was in Flint (Mich.). My last amateur fight was when I was like 22, so it’s been a long time. In terms of sport, in terms of being mentally tough, boxing was a great experience for me.
So it’s safe to assume you never lost a fight on the ice?
(laughs) Oh no, I’ve lost my fair share in the ring and on the ice. But it was great training. Boxing is phenomenal, so I enjoyed it.
Are you going to go to the football game this week?
I want to go to the football game this weekend, I’m going to try pretty hard. I’ve got some other things I have to do Saturday, but I think I’ll be able to get there.
So being from Michigan, what do you think of the Rich Rod hire?
Oh, I’m excited, I think that he’s going to do a real good job for us. I think he’s the kind of guy that is exactly what Wildcat football needs. The guy’s going to come in there and have a high octane offense and it is going to be pretty exciting.
So how does coaching here compare to coaching at Oakland from 2005-2009?
Well coaching here is fantastic. The fan support, being backed by the University of Arizona, a school that size and that magnitude and that nationally known, makes it a lot easier to recruit players and it’s basically just another level. Oakland has a really good hockey program in our league, they do a really good job, but now we are going to try and take their success and go to the University of Arizona and exponentially grow that, just with that name.
I saw that ASU is playing at the new NCAA Division I team Penn State. Do you think playing NCAA teams is possible here in the future for Arizona?
Yeah, that’s the goal, one of things we want to get accomplished right away. There’s a rule in the NCAA, it’s a game count — the amount of games you can play and right now. Canadian colleges don’t count against NCAA game counts, but our teams do, so we’re trying to get that changed. When that is changed hopefully we can play a lot more. It’s a great opportunity for ASU, it’s a great opportunity for our league because Penn State is actually going to play Oklahoma, ASU and Ohio, three of the top teams in our league. The last time that happened, when Penn State was in our position, playing NCAA teams, Penn State won. A lot of the guys on the team that lost to Oakland are on Penn State’s team. It’s a possibility, for sure, that ASU can win some of those games.