UMass Boston hockey player becomes first to sign with NHL team
Colin Larkin, a senior management major from Waterford, Michigan, became the first UMass Boston hockey player to sign a contract with an NHL team on Monday. Larkin signed a one-year, entry-level contract with the Edmonton Oilers and an amateur tryout contract with the Oilers’s American Hockey League affiliate, the Bakersfield Condors.
“Being able to have this opportunity is a dream come true. I’m extremely excited,” said Larkin as he prepared to board a plane for California.
Larkin, 24, said the NHL was always a goal, and that Edmonton is a good fit.
Larkin, who led all New England Hockey Conference teams in scoring this year with 46 points, earned his second straight New England Hockey Conference Player of the Year honor during the 2017-2018 season. He had 24 goals for the Beacons this season, including one in the final game of his collegiate career, in the semifinals of the NEHC Tournament. He is the all-time Beacons leader in power-play goals (23) and games played (111). The highlight of his four years here, though, was being part of UMass Boston’s Frozen Four team in 2016.
“I think my team here was exceptional. For me, as a player and as a student, going to UMass Boston was the best thing for me,” Larkin said. “There’s a lot of great people at UMass Boston, in facilities, and teaching and coaching. I’m extremely thankful for my coaches. My teammates and Coach Peter Belisle and Coach Cory Schneider and Coach Sean Walsh helped me become the player and person that I am today.”
“I am so proud of Colin. He has worked so hard for this opportunity,” Head Coach Peter Belisle said. “I can't think of a better person to represent our university and our hockey program at the highest professional level.”
Larkin will be playing for the Condors and doing his schoolwork remotely until April. He’ll then be returning to campus to finish up his classes before graduation in May.
Larkin said he still has a lot of work to do, but he now has the opportunity to face off against his younger brother, Dylan Larkin, on NHL ice. Dylan is in his third season as a forward for the Detroit Red Wings, following a year at the University of Michigan.