One of the nation's top recruiters, Andy Slaggert will be entering his 25th season with Notre Dame hockey in 2017-18, having served the previous eight seasons in an Associate Coach role before being elevated to Associate Head Coach in the summer of 2017.
"He is the best recruiter for Notre Dame,” head coach Jeff Jackson said upon Slaggert's most recent promotion. "Andy is also extremely important to our players, from the time they are introduced to Notre Dame to long after they become alumni. He is more than a hockey coach to our young men, he's a life coach to them. Andy has been immensely loyal to Notre Dame and the Irish hockey family."
A part of three Frozen Four runs under Jackson, Slaggert holds the unique distinction of having played for the first two coaches of the modern era of Notre Dame hockey - Lefty Smith and Ric Schafer - while also serving as an assistant coach for Schafer, Dave Poulin and Jackson.
Slaggert's keen eye for talent on the recruiting trail was evidenced during the 2016-17 NHL season when a record 10 former Notre Dame hockey players appeared in the league, including back-to-back Stanley Cup champions Ian Cole and Bryan Rust with the Pittsburgh Penguins. In addition to Cole and Rust, Vince Hinostroza (Chicago), Stephen Johns (Dallas), Anders Lee (New York Islanders), Kyle Palmieri (New Jersey), Riley Sheahan (Detroit), Robbie Russo (Detroit) and T.J. Tynan (Columbus) also skated in the NHL in 2016-17.
The popular coach was honored by his peers during the 2009-10 season when he was named the winner of the American Hockey Coaches Association's Terry Flanagan Award for 2010. The award is named in honor of the former New Hampshire player and Bowling Green assistant and honors an assistant coach for his career body of work.
During Slaggert's previous 24 seasons as an assistant, he has been involved in recruiting 49 players who were selected in the NHL Draft. That group of 49 includes first-round selections Ian Cole (St. Louis in 2007), Kyle Palmieri (Anaheim in 2009) and Riley Sheahan (Detroit in 2010). In the 2016 NHL Draft, Andrew Peeke (Columbus) and Cam Morrison (Colorado) were selected 34th and 40th overall, marking the first time in Notre Dame history two players went in the first 40 picks.
The Irish also have had 37 players from the U.S. National Team Development Program play at Notre Dame, while 18 Irish players have suited up for the U.S. Junior National Team in the World Junior Championships.
The energetic and hard-working assistant has been highly involved with coaching on the national level since 1997. During the summer of 2004, Slaggert reached his highest level when he was named head coach of the U.S. Under-17 select team that went on to finish second at the Five Nations Tournament in Halle, Germany.
The previous year (2003) the veteran assistant got his first taste of coaching with USA Hockey at the international level when he served as an assistant coach on the U.S. Under-18 Select team that captured the gold medal at the Under-18 World Cup held in the Czech Republic. During the summers of 2002-05, the native of Saginaw, Michigan, served as head coach at the United States Select 15 tournament held at St. Cloud State.
Beginning in 1997, Slaggert became involved in coaching Michigan Select teams. During the summer of 2000, he coached the Michigan Select 15 Junior Olympic Festival Team. In 1998, he served as a head coach at the Michigan State Select 16 Festival helping evaluate players who were competing for a chance to play in the national tournament. In the summer of 1997, Slaggert served as an assistant coach for Team Michigan at the United States Select 15 Festival. From 1997 to 2004, he served as a head coach and evaluator at the Michigan State Bantam Camp in Big Rapids, Michigan.
Slaggert received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Notre Dame in 1989. He then went on to earn his master's degree in physical education from Ohio University in 1991. A right wing for the Irish from 1986-89, Slaggert totaled seven goals and six assists over 55 games during his three-year Notre Dame career.
Slaggert's first venture into coaching came in 1989 with the Amerisport International European Hockey Tour and he returned to Notre Dame in 1992.
Slaggert and his wife, Tara, were married in the summer of 1996. The couple resides in South Bend with their hockey-playing sons Graham, Landon and Carter. Graham has signed a National Letter of Intent to join the Irish and will skate for the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders (USHL) in 2017-18.