Mike Babcock has had hundreds of players call him coach in over two decades behind the bench, but as of Nov. 25 they can call him something new.
The Detroit Red Wings coach will receive an honorary doctorate as part of the fall convocation ceremonies at his alma mater, McGill University in Montreal. Babcock will be made a Doctor of Laws.
"No question about it that an honorary degree from McGill was more improbable to me than winning a Stanley Cup," Babcock told the McGill Reporter, which revealed the news Thursday. "When I went to McGill I had no idea of the quality of people I would meet and the quality of institute that I would be attending. And I didn't know it until after I arrived and maybe even until after I left what a great school it was and how it was going to impact my life. So to be honored in this fashion is so humbling and unbelievable."
Babcock graduated from McGill in 1986 with a bachelor's degree in physical education and went on to do post-graduate work in sports psychology.
After spending nearly a decade coaching junior hockey in the Western Hockey League for the Moose Jaw Warriors and Spokane Chiefs, he coached the Cincinnati Mighty Ducks of the American Hockey League for two seasons before being named coach of the Anaheim Mighty Ducks for the 2002-03 season.
In Babcock's first NHL season he guided the Mighty Ducks to the Stanley Cup Final, where they lost in Game 7 to the New Jersey Devils. Babcock coached one more season with the Ducks before joining the Red Wings, where he has coached since the 2005-06 season. Babcock led the Red Wings to a Stanley Cup victory in 2008 and back to the Final again the following season.
In addition, Babcock coached Canada to gold at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics and will be behind the bench again leading the team at the 2014 Sochi Olympics. He is the only coach to be a member of the Triple Gold Club, having won a Stanley Cup, an Olympic gold medal and a World Championship gold medal, which he won coaching Canada in 2004.