SCSU women's coach Brian Idalski talks about living in the dorms again

The head coach talks about several steps of his playing, coaching career, what he's been up to since getting hired and more on the Huskies Hockey Insider Podcast with The Rink Live's Mick Hatten.

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St. Cloud State women's hockey head coach Brian Idalski.
Courtesy of St. Cloud State University athletics

Since being introduced as St. Cloud State University's sixth women's hockey head coach on June 2, Brian Idalski has been working on getting to know all of his new players. He and his wife have temporarily moved into the SCSU dorms at Shoemaker Hall and he is getting used to his new surroundings.

Idalski is no stranger to women's hockey. He was the head coach at Wisconsin-Stevens Point from 2001-06, spent one season as an assistant coach at SCSU and then was the head coach for the University of North Dakota from 2007-17.

Idalski discusses what he's learned about the Huskies he's inheriting, talks about his background in coaching and his playing days growing up in Michigan and playing AAA hockey. All this and more on the Huskies Hockey Insider Podcast with The Rink Live's Mick Hatten.


:40 Decompressing from Russian professional season, living in Shoemaker Hall, renting because of the crazy housing market


3:20 Where he is at with talking to players, players testing with the strength coach

4:35 Number of freshmen coming in, super seniors Taytum Geier, McKenna Wesloh, Jennina Nylund; what it's like working with Finnish players

7:05 Transfer players Avery Myers (New Hampshire), JoJo Chobak (Minnesota Duluth), some of the needs for this season's team

8:15 Watching video delayed, some schedule news, administrative paperwork

9:25 Philosophy of Lou Holtz, can I trust you, are you committed to excellence, do you care about me? Themes of talking with returning players

13:15 His change in philosophy with regard to coaching a system, adjusting to personnel

Huskies new head coach has had a winning record wherever he has gone: Wisconsin-Stevens Point, University of North Dakota, pro hockey in Russia. Idalski was introduced as the head coach at a press conference on Thursday

15:15 Getting involved with hockey as a kid in Michigan, playing AAA hockey, trips to play games in Canada

19:00 Playing junior hockey leads to playing for Wisconsin-Stevens Point in college, playing with a few of the same players from juniors, the success the Pointers had when he played, playing with the fathers of Hobey Baker Award winners


23:25 How he got into coaching after playing minor league hockey, how he ended up coaching the UW-Stevens Point women's team

28:00 Whether or not there are differences between coaching men and women, relating to a scene from the movie "Miracle"

29:50 How he got to be an assistant at SCSU in 2006-07 for Jeff Giesen, noting the differences between Division III and Division I

31:30 How he ended up being the head coach at the University of North Dakota, not anticipating getting the job, being honest with the Grand Forks media

35:15 The shock of UND cutting women's hockey, having a recruit on campus when he got the news, filling the void for a season, coaching at Culver Academy

39:50 The schedule for players the rest of the offseason

The 18-year-old defenseman from Lake Elmo, Minn., and Hill-Murray High School graduate, is ranked No. 125 among North American Skaters by NHL Central Scouting in their final 2022 draft prospect rankings. The NHL Entry Draft will be held July 7-8 in Montreal
She spent the last two seasons playing for the University of New Hampshire. She chose St. Cloud State, despite the Huskies being in the process of interviewing new head coaches at the time.
Chobak, who was a backup goalie the last two seasons for the Bulldogs, also made the decision as St. Cloud State University was looking for a new women's head coach. Before playing in college, she played for the Chicago Young Americans.
The 27-year-old from St. Louis spent last season as an assistant coach for the St. Cloud Norsemen in the NAHL. Also, Jack Peart is one of 20 defensemen invited to National Junior Evaluation Camp for Team USA.
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After averaging nearly a point-per-game playing for the Wilderness, the wing garners attention from NCAA Division I programs, chooses to play for the Huskies. The 18-year-old from Apple Valley also has an outside shot at being selected in the 2022 NHL Entry Draft and is a former competitive mountain biker.
New scoreboards, sound system improvements should be in place by the fall of 2022. A leadership gift of $500,000 will fund a strength and conditioning coach, mental health and leadership programming for men's and women's hockey.
Both of Gruba's parents attended St. Cloud State. His father, Tony, played forward for the Huskies from 1990-94 and was the team's captain his senior season.

Mick Hatten is a reporter and editor for Forum News Service and helps manage, a website dedicated to hockey. He began working for Forum Communications in November 2018 and has covered St. Cloud State University hockey since 2010. A graduate of St. Cloud State, he has more than 30 years of experience as a journalist and has been a youth hockey coach since 2014.
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