Penn State Hockey: Patrick Koudys Named 2014-15 Men’s Hockey Captain
Penn State hockey has a new captain in defenseman Patrick Koudys the program announced on Friday afternoon.
“We have a tremendous leadership group for the 2014-15 season and the addition of Patrick Koudys as captain will make it even stronger,” said head coach Guy Gadowsky. “The group is a consummate representation of the hard work and dedication seen throughout Penn State University, Penn State Athletics and the hockey program.”
Koudys, a redshirt senior will take over as captain after establishing himself as one of Penn State's most reliable defenseman and one of the most consistent players in the conference. He will be flanked in offical leadership roles by Nate Jensen and David Glen who both were assistant captains this past season.
Former captain Tommy Olczyk will remain with the team despite no longer being team captain. The position is voted on annually by the team with coaching influence as well. Gadowksy stressed that the move was not reflective of Olczyk's performance as captain or standing on the team.
“We want to establish a standard that everyone on this team be a strong leader regardless of whether or not the individual has a letter on his uniform," Gadowksy said. "Tommy remains an important part of our leadership core.”
Ultimately the move makes sense on several levels. While well-respected by his teammates, Olczyk was known more for doing things the right way rather than being a player who led by physical play and timely goals (although he does head into 2014 with a handful to his name.)
As Penn State transitions into a more established role in college hockey, Koudys -- who was one of only four Nittany Lions to play all 36 games -- will provide Penn State with leadership on the ice in different ways than Olczyk did. It is simply inserting a different kind of leader into the captain role at this juncture in the program's history than a reflection of Olcyzk's performance.
In the end, both players will be a big part of Penn State's ability to succeed in 2014.