Jerry York is on top of college hockey. Will the head coach of Boston College's arch rival ever catch him?
Boston University hockey coach Jack Parker, who gets his fair share of ribbing around these parts, was gracious in speaking about coach Jerry York following the Terriers December 1 loss to BC. York had tied the all-time wins record with the 5-2 win over the Eagles' arch rivals.
"He deserves all the accolades. It's hard for people to believe this, because he's been around so long and been so successful, and he's won so many games, but I still don't think he gets the credit he deserves.
"He's a very good coach who's run great programs at three different places, and has done an unbelievable job making this program the best it's ever been. This is a place where they've had two other coaches who've won 500 games. It's had a lot of good hockey for a long, long time. And he's the best they've ever had."
York and Parker's careers will forever be tied together. Not just because they coach at opposite ends of the Green Line as part of college hockey's greatest rivalry, but because Parker sits third on the all-time win list with 886. That total is good for second best of all active coaches behind only York.
The question is can Parker ever catch York for take sole possession of the all-time wins record?
It's not going to be easy as York is winning games at an almost absurd clip these days. It took York over five seasons to earn victories 1-100 at Clarkson and over four full seasons at Bowling Green to earn 100 more. The amount of time between York's 825th and 925th victories at Boston College? A little over three full seasons.
Over the last four full seasons from 2008-09 to 2011-12, York has won 27.5 games per season. To put this in perspective, the 19 year coach of the Eagles has accomplished that feat just one other time on the Heights, and five other times while at Bowling Green:
At Bowling Green:
1982-83 to 1985-86: 27.75 wins/season
1983-84 to 1986-87: 29 wins/season
1984-85 to 1987-88: 28 wins/season
1985-86 to 1988-89: 29.25 wins/season
1986-87 to 1989-90: 28.5 wins/season
At Boston College:
1997-98 to 2000-01: 29.25 wins/season
I'm under no delusion that BC will keep winning at its current pace this season, but with the Eagles winning 80 percent of all games, York is on track to eclipse the 30 wins/season four-year average for the first time ever, which is almost unfair.
Packer has eclipsed the 30 wins/season four-year average just once in his career, winning 30.25 games/season over the four years from 1993-94 to 1996-97 which included the 1995 National Championship. In recent years, however, Parker has slowed the pace of victory -- winning just 18, 19 and 23 games in the three seasons after a 35 victory season capped by another title in 2009. Recent four years averages for the Terriers head coach:
2005-06 to 2008-09: 25 wins/season
2006-07 to 2009-10: 23 wins/season
2007-08 to 2010-11: 22.75 wins/season
2008-09 to 2011-12: 23.75 wins/season
York, 39 victories clear of Parker, has been averaging 2-3 more wins a year over a four-year period the last three seasons. Should the two coaches continue winning at roughly the same clip, it would likely take Parker almost two years of coaching after York retires to catch the sport's all-time wins leader.
Given the way York has swung the momentum in the Green Line Rivalry in favor of Boston College in recent years and the way he has restocked future recruiting classes with a near embarrassment of riches, it's hard to see Parker catching York.