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Hall of Famer Ned Harkness dies

By Associated Press, 09/20/08, 10:30AM MDT


ALBANY, N.Y. (Associated Press) — Ned Harkness, who coached NCAA hockey and lacrosse championship teams, died Friday. He was 89.

Harkness, who won NCAA hockey championships in 1954 with Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and in 1967 and 1970 with Cornell University, died at his home in Rochester on his birthday, RPI said. He had recently suffered a stroke.

Harkness also coached the NHL's Detroit Red Wings and later was the team's general manager. Harkness was also the first president and CEO of the New York Olympic Regional Development Authority.

"Inside College Hockey" lists Harkness fifth among the 16 best college hockey coaches of all time, noting he was one of two to win NCAA championships at different schools. Harkness coached at RPI from 1949-63, Cornell from 1963-70, and Union College from 1975-77.

While he was at Cornell, Harkness coached a young law student named Ken Dryden, who would go on to become a Hall of Fame goaltender with the Montreal Canadiens.

He also coached RPI's national champion lacrosse team in 1952.

Harkness was inducted into the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame in 1994 and the National Lacrosse Hall of Fame in 2001.