USC hockey's Wilbur retires

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Bet you didn't know that USC has a men's ice hockey team...and a good one at that.

In fact, Troy's ice hockey tradition is quite strong.  From the mid-1920s to the early 1940s, USC fielded one of the premier ice hockey teams in the country.  Trojan football players dotted some of those rosters, including All-American Morley Drury.

Men's ice hockey is now a club sport at USC, under the aegis of the Recreational Sports department.  It is one of the most successful club hockey programs around, mainly because of the exceptional guidance provided the last 17 years by head coach Mark Wilbur.

Wilbur announced today that he is stepping down as the program's coach and will now serve as its general manager.

Under Wilbur, USC posted a 322-155 record, including a 63-21 mark against UCLA, and won eight PAC 8 Hockey Conference championships (including this year's title).  He is the winningest coach in the history of the Pac 8, the main hockey conference on the West Coast (he helped found the league).  His teams advanced to the Pac 8 finals 11 times.

He said he will now focus his attention on some projects for the team "that I have wanted to get done for years.  We have many opportunities in front of us that I simply cannot get accomplished while trying to coach full time as well...This is not an end of a great run of championships, but more of a refresh and a beginning of another great run."

USC hockey annually plays a schedule against local, national and international teams.  The Trojans have competed throughout the world, and in 2002 became the first American collegiate hockey team to play in China.

Congratulations, Mark, on a job well done!  And best of luck in your future.

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