One of the FCIAC’s legendary coaching careers came to an end last week when Bo Hickey informed Jay Egan, the athletic director at New Canaan High School, that he was stepping down as the boys hockey coach.
Hickey, who made the decision at the end of last season and had been considering it for even longer, told his players Monday night at a camp at Terry Conners Rink.
“I don’t know how many wins I’ve had or any of that,” Hickey said. “All I know is I must have done pretty good because I never got fired. It doesn’t matter because the kids win the games.”
For the record, Hickey led the Rams to 10 FCIAC titles, most recently last March with an upset win over Darien, and to six state championship games.
Hickey is probably equally well known for his accomplishments as an athlete and assistant football coach.
Hickey played football at what was then known as Stamford Catholic, then went on to Maryland, the Canadian Football League and for one season with the Broncos.
Hickey spent 31 years as an assistant to Lou Marinelli with the New Canaan football team after a previous stint at Staples.
A gruff exterior that often included a wad of chewing tobacco in his mouth often gave those unfamiliar with Hickey a wrong perception.
Hickey cared deeply for his players, always deflecting credit to them for their victories and accepting the blame for defeats.
In a foreshadowing of what was to come, Hickey was asked to take over the hockey program in 1994 in midseason, when the Rams were 1-7. He agreed to finish out the season.
That season ended with his first FCIAC title.