NHL Post-Season Begins Tuesday
Cole to be honored at annual team banquet on April 17.
MSU looks to snap six-game winless streak against the Bulldogs.
Both Will Yanakeff and Jake Hildebrand bringing high quality to games, practice
Spartan All-American and 15-year professional Kelly Miller is in his second season on the coaching staff at his alma mater. Miller, who is part of a family which has been synonymous with Spartan Hockey for decades, is in his first collegiate coaching position, but brings a background that helps Spartan players not only prepare to succeed in college hockey, but also into the future either in the professional ranks or in their chosen professions.
Miller was a classmate of Tom Anastos all four seasons at Michigan State, earning four varsity letters (1981-85). The Lansing, Mich., native became the fourth member of his family (out of an eventual 10) to play hockey at Michigan State when he enrolled in the fall of 1981, and he made an immediate impact for the Spartans. During his four-year Spartan career, MSU compiled a 121-43-3 mark and advanced to the NCAA tournament each season, including a fourth-place finish in 1984. The Spartans also captured four straight Great Lakes Invitational titles and CCHA Playoff championships. He closed his career playing in 165 games, posting 82 goals and 82 assists for 164 points. He still ranks tied for 25th on MSU's all-time scoring list and tied for seventh with nine career short-handed tallies.
As a senior in 1984-85, he tallied 27 goals and 50 points in 43 games, as the Spartans rolled to 38-6 overall mark and a 27-5 first-place CCHA slate. He was a Hobey Baker Award finalist and earned All-America First-Team honors, in addition to being selected as the team MVP.
A champion in the classroom, MIller was a three-time CCHA All-Academic team honoree, earning first-team honors in 1984 and 1985. In addition, he earned Academic All-America first-team distinction in 1985. He earned both his bachelor's and master's degrees from MSU. He was honored as the MSU hockey program's Distinguished Spartan in 2003.
A ninth-round draft choice of the New York Rangers in 1982, his National Hockey League career spanned more than 1,000 games over 15 seasons, including three years with the New York Rangers and 12 with the Washington Capitals. He developed into one of the top defensive players in the league, registering 181 goals and 463 points. A Selke Trophy finalist (best defensive forward) in 1989, he helped the Capitals to the Stanley Cup Finals in 1998, and served as an assistant captain for the franchise for more than a decade. He was also the vice president of the NHL Players Association from 1990-95.
Miller started his coaching career in 1999-2000 when he served as a player/coach for the Grand Rapids Griffins, leading the squad to the Turner Cup Finals and moved on to the Anaheim Mighty Ducks as an assistant coach in 2000-01. He went on to work on the New York Islanders staff under current Philadelphia coach Peter Laviolette from 2001-2003.
Miller has extensive experience with USA Hockey and also with the game at the earliest levels of development. As a player, he skated for Team USA at the World Junior Championships in 1981, 1982 and 1983. He was captain and team MVP of the 1983 USA squad. He represented the US in three World Championships (1986, 1989, 1999), helped the US to a gold medal at the Four Nations Cup in 2000, and participated in the 1987 Canada Cup. He also served as an athlete director and Junior Council Member for USA Hockey from 1995-2001, and as an assistant coach on the U16 Four Nations Cup in Slovakia in August 2000 and at the Select 16 Hockey Festival the same summer.
Miller holds a bachelor's degree in business administration as well as his M.B.A. from Michigan State and a graduate degree in banking from the prestigious Stonier School of Banking at the University of Pennsylvania. Accomplished in the fields of both commercial real estate and banking, he has served as the vice president of Bank Performance and director of specialty finance for Capitol Bancorp Limited since 2005. He and his wife Shelby have three daughters: Taylor and Chelsey (both Michigan State students) and their youngest, Ashton, attends Okemos High School.
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