Rampage TV’s first episode of In the Spotlight hosted by David Cunliffe features a special interview with USA Hockey Hall of Fame legend, Lou Vairo. Below is a summary of Vairo’s impressive career spanning over six decades. To view Episode 1, please visit either Rampage TV channels:
Rampage TV Reminder! This weekend (November 5 and 6), Rampage TV will broadcast live back-to-back 16U and 18U Tier-1 action featuring the Rampage vs. Omaha Mastery AAA. To access the games, visit the WSBN Rampage TV game-day channel: https://www.wsbn.tv/rampage-hockey/
• November 5- 5:30 pm Rampage 16U vs. Omaha, 7:00 pm Rampage 18U vs. Omaha
• November 6- 8:00 am Rampage 16U vs. Omaha, 10:15 Rampage 18U vs. Omaha
About Lou Vairo:
Arriving in Austin, MN as the new Head Coach of the Austin Mavericks Junior hockey team in 1975, Coach Lou Vairo had no idea that his knowledge would make a powerful and lasting impact on countless numbers of players and coaches, and the game itself worldwide. Born in Brooklyn, NY, Vairo developed a passion for hockey playing with steel wheel skates on asphalt, and watching the New York Rangers. Coaching neighborhood players in his early twenties, he wrote the famed Russian Red Army coach Anatoly Tarasov asking for an opportunity to come learn from him in Moscow. Tarasov replied with an invitation and Vairo accepted, setting in motion the eventual transformation of the American game.
Bringing new concepts of off-ice training and an emphasis on puck possession from Tarasov to the Mavericks, Vairo led a losing team to a national championship in year-one. Two years later (in 1978) he was selected as the Head Coach for the USA U20 World Junior Championship team, and named the first Hockey Director for USA Hockey. In 1980, he was celebrating a gold medal as the advanced scout to Herb Brooks and the Miracle on Ice Team. In 1984 Vairo was honored to serve as the Head Coach of the USA Olympic team in Sarajevo. Following the Olympics, he spent time as an assistant Coach of the New Jersey Devils, and Head Coach of teams in the Netherlands and Italy.
In 1999, Vairo returned to USA Hockey as the head coach of the World Championship team. He served in this role until he reunited with Herb Brooks to coach Team USA in the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics. Coaching the American born NHL all-stars against the world’s best, Vairo added a silver medal to his Olympic collection. In 2014, he was inducted into the USA Hockey Hall of Fame. In 2022, Lou Vairo’s career coaching youth hockey in Brooklyn came full circle when he joined the Colorado Rampage staff.
His expertise has quickly help lift an already impressive USA Hockey Model Club to new heights. Serving as the 2022-23 Bantam AA Head Coach, Vairo has also been instrumental helping to develop the curriculum for 10U-14U players, which aligns with the age-appropriate approach to youth development that he implemented for USA Hockey in the late 70’s. These core concepts were ultimately adopted formally in 2009 as the American Development Model. Vairo’s input and leadership in the ongoing Rampage coaching education program, and simply his smile and humble but electric presence at all the rinks is invaluable.