The Chicago Steel announced that Jon Waibel has been named Head Coach/General Manager of the team, replacing Steve Poapst who earlier this week was named assistant coach for the Rockford IceHogs, AHL affiliate of the Chicago Blackhawks.
"I am excited for this opportunity and look forward to the upcoming season. We have a good group of guys in the room and I know they will play hard day in and day out," said Waibel. "I have been fortunate to be part of the staff under the guidance of Steve Poapst for the past few years, and I am thankful to the Chicago Steel ownership for the opportunity that they have given me to lead this organization."
Waibel, 28, enters his fifth season with the Steel organization in 2010-11 after serving the previous four seasons in coaching and scouting roles.
The native of Baudette, Minnesota also has experience playing in the USHL as he was a two-year member of the National Team Development Program. He played 65 games in the League from 1998-2000 and posted 42 points (18g, 24a) under then head coach Jeff Jackson who is now the head coach at the University of Notre Dame.
Waibel went on to a four-year collegiate career (2000-04) at the University of Minnesota. The forward appeared in 168 games for the Gophers collecting 48 points (20g, 28a). He also helped the program capture the NCAA Championship in back-to-back seasons (2002 and 2003), including scoring a goal in the 2003 title game.
Prior to joining the Steel organization, Waibel was on the coaching staff at Buffalo High School in Minnesota.
(Nathan can be reached at email@example.com)