Hockey East has continued a steady rise to prominence since its
founding charter on July 11, 1983, when the possibility of an apparent Ivy
League departure threatened the ECAC. In response, the athletics directors
from Boston College, Boston University, New Hampshire, Northeastern
and Providence unveiled a new Division I men's ice hockey conference.
Together, Bill Flynn of Boston College, John Simpson of Boston University,
Andy Mooradian of New Hampshire, Joe Zabilski of Northeastern and Lou
Lamoriello of Providence launched Hockey East. Lamoriello assumed the
role of the league's first commissioner.
Later that summer, the Board of Directors added the University of
Maine and the University of Lowell (now UMass Lowell). Official conference
competition of the seven-team league began with the 1984-85 season, and
expansion brought the league to nine teams with the additions of Merrimack
College (1989) and the University of Massachusetts (1993). The entry of
the University of Vermont for the 2005-06 season brought the conference
membership to 10 teams.
Since its inception, Hockey East has set new competitive standards for
college hockey success, annually compiling an impressive collective winning
percentage against non-conference opponents, including a record .705
during the 2002-03 season and a .669 win percentage during the 25th
anniversary season of 2008-09. Over the last 20 years, Hockey East has
cemented itself as the nation's elite college hockey league, having earned
29 of the 74 berths in the NCAA Frozen Four and boasting eight NCAA
title winners: the University of Maine in 1993 and 1999, Boston University
in 1995 and 2009, Boston College in 2001, 2008, 2010 and again most recently in 2012 in Tampa, Fla.