Now in his 16th season as head coach of the Dartmouth men's ice hockey program, Bob Gaudet has firmly established himself in the lore of this century-old program. A 1981 Dartmouth graduate and four-year member of the varsity hockey team, Gaudet has made the Big Green one of the most consistent teams in both ECAC Hockey and the Ivy League during his time behind the bench.
In the last two seasons, Gaudet has reached several key milestones, earning his 200th win behind the Big Green bench in 2010-11 and eclipsing the 300-career win mark in the first game of 2011-12.
In 24 seasons as a head coach, including the last 15 at Dartmouth, Gaudet has worked with and developed some of the nation's top talents. Eight former Dartmouth players suited up for NHL teams in 2010-11 alone and nine total in that time. Several more former student-athletes also played in other professional leagues in the last two years, including the KHL, AHL, ECHL and the CHL.
Entering the 2012-13 season, Gaudet ranks second all-time at Dartmouth with 219 wins, trailing only Big Green legend Eddie Jeremiah '30, who racked up 308 victories in 26 seasons with the program. Gaudet's .507 winning percentage (219-212-54) is the third-best mark at Dartmouth as well.
After nine successful seasons behind the Brown University bench from 1988-97, Gaudet returned to Hanover for the 1997-98 campaign.
In 2010-11, Gaudet and the Big Green made huge strides to return to national prominence. Dartmouth finished the season ranked No. 15 in the nation after posting 19 wins and winning the ECAC Hockey Consolation Game in Atlantic City, N.J.
At Dartmouth, Gaudet guided the Big Green to seven straight winning seasons from the 2000-01 season to 2006-07 and had 20-win seasons in 2002-03 and 2004-05. The 20-13-2 record in 2004-05 marked the team's fifth consecutive campaign above .500, the first time that had happened in school history. Gaudet has also led the Big Green to seven straight home playoff series, and in 2001, the program made its first trip to the ECAC semifinals in 20 years. He earned his 200th career win against St. Lawrence on Feb. 11, 2005 and has a Dartmouth record of 219-212-54.
The Big Green has won two titles under Gaudet. In 2007 Dartmouth captured a share of its first Ivy title since Gaudet was in net in 1980. The 2005-06 season gave Dartmouth its first-ever ECACHL title. Gaudet was also named ECAC Hockey's Coach of the Year, making him the second coach to earn the award with two separate teams. He was also a finalist for the Division I Coach of the Year award. Gaudet has now had two Ivy League Players of the Year, Mike Ouellette earned the honor in 2005-06 while David Jones was given the title in 2006-07. Jones was also an All-America, giving Gaudet four back-to-back players to earn that distinction.
Gaudet took over Brown's coaching reins in 1988 and immediately went about transforming the Bears from a perennial cellar-dweller into one of the ECAC's top programs. During his tenure, Brown steadily climbed in the league standings, from 12th in '89 to eighth in '90 and '91, fifth in '92, third in '93, fourth in '94 and all the way to second in '95. Since his return in 1997, Gaudet began the same process at Dartmouth. The Big Green finished 11th his first two years, eighth in 2000, fifth in '01, third in '05 and was tied for first in 2006-07.
During Gaudet's time at Brown, the Bears were crowned Ivy League champions twice (1991 and 1995) and, in 1993, made the school's first NCAA appearance since 1976. In both 1993 and 1995, he was a finalist for Division I Coach of the Year. He was named ECAC Coach of the Year in 1995 after leading Brown to a second-place finish in the league, just one-and-a-half games behind first-place Clarkson. The Bears also spent much of the year in and out of the top 10 in the national polls.
Gaudet became head coach of the Bears in 1988 following a five-year tenure as an assistant coach with the Big Green. He assisted in all aspects at Dartmouth under head coaches George Crowe and Brian Mason, while coordinating recruiting efforts and serving as varsity goaltender coach. In addition, he directed the junior varsity program his first season in Hanover.
Gaudet graduated in 1981 with a degree in visual arts after four productive seasons for the Big Green hockey team. In 1979 and 1980, Gaudet led the team to Ivy League titles and appearances in the NCAA Frozen Four. As a senior, he served as co-captain and was a recipient of the Philip D. McInnis Award for spirit, loyalty and dedication to Dartmouth ice hockey. In 76 career games, he made a school-record 2,129 saves, while allowing only 299 goals for a 4.00 career goals-against average and an .877 save percentage. He had his most successful campaign as a sophomore when he recorded two of his four-career shutouts to go along with a 3.03 goals-against average. He was First Team All-Ivy in 1978-79 and 1979-80, and was a two-time recipient of the Canterbury Society Award for the best Ivy League goalie.
Following graduation, Gaudet signed a free-agent contract with the Winnipeg Jets of the National Hockey League. He played for minor-league affiliates of Winnipeg in the CHL and IHL for one year before a knee injury cut short his promising career.
In the summer of 1990, Gaudet served as the assistant coach of the East Team in the Olympic Sports Festival, held in Minneapolis. In 1994, he served again as head coach of the East Team, and also coached the East All-Star Team in the East-West Shrine College Hockey Classic. Gaudet spent the summer of 1998 behind the bench of the New England Select 16-Team at USA Hockey's Summer Festival in Ann Arbor, Mich.
Gaudet and his wife Lynne, also a 1981 Dartmouth graduate, reside in Etna, N.H., and have three children: sons Joe and Jim and daughter Kelly. Eldest son Joe graduated from Dartmouth in 2010, while Jim earned his degree from the College in 2012. Both Joe and Jim played four seasons with the Big Green with each serving as an alternate captain in their final seasons with the team. Kelly will be a senior at Hanover High School in 2012-13 where she is the starting goalie and co-captain of the girl's ice hockey team.