BREAKING: Nightingale in as next MSU hockey coach


Credit: MSU Athletic Communications

Cameron McClarren, Hockey Beat Reporter

EAST LANSING — Adam Nightingale has been named the new head coach of Michigan State hockey after former head coach Danton Cole was dismissed from his duties in mid-April. 

“It brings me great pride to bring Adam Nightingale back to Michigan State University as the new head coach of Spartan hockey,” said MSU athletic director Alan Haller. “Adam has a passion for the school and the program, and his combination of skill development, player development and recruiting ties promises to make the next era of Spartan hockey a successful chapter in the storied history of a proud program.”

Nightingale, a native of Cheboygan, Michigan, has spent the last two seasons as the head coach of the USNTDP and helped the team reach a silver medal at the IIHF Ice Hockey U18 World Championship last week. Nightingale’s roster consists of 22 DI hockey commits and played 15 games against DI schools this past season, amassing an 8-7 record in those games. 

“I’m extremely thankful and humbled to have the opportunity to lead at Michigan State University,” said Nightingale. “Spartan hockey is a source of pride for the university, the East Lansing community, and the entire state of Michigan.”

Before his time at the USNTDP, Nightingale spent four seasons on staff in the NHL. He spent three seasons with the Detroit Red Wings as a video coach (2017-19) and assistant coach (2019-20). Before Detroit, Nightingale was a video coach for one season with the Buffalo Sabres in 2016. 

Nightingale is also a former Spartan, having played two seasons in the green and white from 2003-2005. In 118 career games split between Lake Superior State and Michigan State, Nightingale amassed 37 points. He also served as an alternate captain in his two seasons at MSU.

“Our staff will put a premium on player development so that we can play an exciting and skilled brand of hockey,” said Nightingale. “We look forward to building the program back to where our proud alumni and fan base know it should be, which is the top of college hockey.”

Nightingale comes from a hockey family as his brothers Jason and Jared both work in the professional leagues. Jason currently serves as the assistant director of amateur scouting for the Buffalo Sabres and Jared is an assistant coach for the American Hockey League’s Rockford Ice Hogs. 

Nightingale will be introduced as the eighth head coach in program history at a press conference on Monday, May 9.

You can follow Cameron McClarren on Twitter at @Cam_McClarren.