Former New York Ranger All-Star goalie Mike Richter has been accepted to and will attend Yale this year, men’s hockey head coach Tim Taylor confirmed yesterday.
During the 1984-1985 season, Taylor recruited the then-Northwood School senior, who eventually decided to attend the University of Wisconsin.
Twenty years later, the three-time NHL All-Star and Stanley Cup Champion will be living in New Haven to finish his college education, Taylor said.
“Essentially, he’s going to be a full-time student,” Taylor said.
In 1993-1994, Richter led the Rangers to hockey’s ultimate prize, the Stanley Cup, the Rangers’ first since the 1939-1940 season.
Last night, prior to New York’s game against Minnesota Wild at Madison Square Garden, the Rangers organization celebrated Mike Richter Night, retiring his number 35, only the third Ranger number retired in the organization’s 77-year history.
“I’m leaving with the realization that this time here has been nothing short of an amazing gift,” Richter told the 18,000-plus crowd on hand.
Richter was unavailable for comment Wednesday night.
In addition to immortalizing himself in Ranger history, the 37-year-old from Abington, Penn., was a three-time Olympian and a member of the silver medal-winning team at Salt Lake City in 2002. In 1996, Richter was the MVP during the Inaugural World Cup, which the U.S. won.
Richter spent two years at the University of Wisconsin before leaving to join the U.S. National Team in 1987 in preparation for the Calgary Olympics and then embarked on his professional career.
His brilliant career ended on Nov. 5, 2002 when he suffered his second concussion during his last NHL game.
On Sept. 4, 2003, Richter officially retired from the NHL because of post-concussion syndrome.
He spent all 15 years of his NHL career with the Rangers and holds the team record for wins with 301.
“Yale sold itself,” Taylor said. “When his retirement became official — I put him in touch with the admissions office.”
Richter, who took summer classes at Columbia University while playing for the Rangers, also looked at the University of Pennsylvania, Dartmouth and Brown after retiring.
At Yale, Richter will be part of the Special Student Program, Taylor said.
“In the Degree Special Student Program, preference is given to applicants whose work/life experience and community involvements promise to add unusual dimensions to undergraduate life in the classroom,” the Admissions Web site reads. “Special Students in the Degree Program typically do not take a full course-load though they have the option of attending full-time by individual request.”
As for any participation in Yale’s hockey program, the Bulldogs already have one volunteer coach — the maximum the University permits — but that does not rule out any interaction between Richter and the team, Taylor said.
[ydn-legacy-photo-inline id=”18339″ ]