ORONO, Maine (NEWS CENTER) — The University of Maine hosted the largest crowd ever for a football game at Alfond Stadium. Alums were happy to be back and many were seeking out hockey coach Red Gendron for a hand shake.
Gendron is in his fourth year as the head Maine hockey coach. Although the team continues to struggle, Gendron remains a popular man on campus.
"At the end of the day, it's not the number of times you got your name on the Stanley Cup that determines the number of people who will come to your funeral," says the affable New Hampshire native.
Gendron grew up in the hockey town of Berlin, New Hampshire. That town's amateur team, The Maroons, won multiple national championships in the 1950s and '60s. As TV was just evolving, large crowds would pack arenas. The team was nicknamed "The Flying Frenchmen."
Gendron, just a boy, loved watching that team. He would grow up to lead his high school to a state championship and serve as a three-year captain at New England College.
He then started as a high school coach and got his big break from Shawn Walsh, who selected Gendron as an assistant. Red would work three years in Orono, including the national championship team in 1993, which went 42-1-2.
"The best by far, bar none, but I'm biased."
Gendron would go on to be an assistant with the New Jersey Devils. He would have his name inscribed on the Stanley Cup three times.
After stops with UMass and Yale, he returned to Maine in 2013.