If you were wondering which college coach would make the jump to the NHL ranks next, it doesn’t look like it will be David Carle. The University of Denver head coach has signed an extension through the 2026-27 season after winning his second national championship (first as head coach) earlier this year.
There’s little doubt that he’ll eventually get there and no rush for the 32-year-old Carle, who already has a decade of coaching experience under his belt. His playing career was ended just before the 2008 draft when he was diagnosed with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, taking any chance of an NHL future off the table. Despite that diagnosis, he was still picked 203rd overall by the Tampa Bay Lightning, who would acquire his brother Matt Carle just a few days later.
Instead of giving up on hockey, he became a student assistant coach at DU the following year, and after two years as an assistant with the Green Bay Gamblers of the USHL, he was back as a full-time assistant in Denver in 2014. Given the head coaching role in 2018, he has led the program to a 86-43-13 recorder, ecently won Coach of the Year honors, and was the fourth-youngest head coach in history to take home the national championship.
With such an early start, there’s a good chance that if he wants to, Carle will be able to pursue an NHL coaching career at some point down the road. But that won’t be for a while yet, after agreeing to a long-term partnership with the school that gave him his first chance.