The St. Louis Blues have named Drew Bannister as the next head coach of the San Antonio Rampage, both clubs announced on Tuesday morning.
Bannister comes to San Antonio after coaching in the Ontario Hockey League with the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds. He led the Greyhounds to a franchise record of 55-7-3-3 as the club went to the OHL Finals in 2018.
“We are very excited to have Drew join our organization,” said St. Louis Blues President of Hockey Operations and General Manager Doug Armstrong in a press release. “He has proven himself over the past few seasons in the OHL and will be a perfect fit as we continue to develop our prospects through our affiliation with San Antonio.”
The 44-year-old Bannister was awarded the OHL’s 2017-2018 Coach of the Year as well as the Canadian Hockey League’s 2017-2018 Coach of the Year. The Greyhounds also won the Bumbacco Trophy as winners of the West Division. Bannister’s overall record with the Greyhounds was 136-50-13-5 in six seasons and made the playoffs ever since he took over in 2012.
“I’m incredibly appreciative of the opportunity that the Blues and Rampage have afforded me,” said Bannister in a statement. “I want to express my gratitude to all of the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhound staff members, players, and ownership. I look forward to instilling a winning culture in San Antonio as we continue to develop the young and talented players in the St. Louis system.”
The Rampage will begin a five-year affiliation with the St. Louis Blues beginning in the 2018-19 season. Over 16 seasons, San Antonio has missed out on the postseason for 12 seasons.