The NCAA honored finance major and defenseman Kent Anderson for his academic achievement

Kent Anderson receiving a trophy for academic excellence As a self-proclaimed “math guy,” there was only one equation DU hockey defenseman Kent Anderson was focused on over the past seven months: the number of wins it took to get the Pioneers hockey team to its record-setting 10th NCAA tournament win.

“It’s unbelievable. It was a fun year for sure, and to make it to 10 is unreal,” said Anderson, a sophomore finance major in the Daniels College of Business. “Being part of the Denver hockey program, we’re expecting to win every year. We had some tough losses in the middle of the season, but I think going through that adversity made us better in the end.”

Winning the championship wasn’t his only success this year. Anderson, who has a 3.97 GPA, has been honored for academic and athletic achievement by the NCAA, receiving one of the organization’s 2024 Elite 90 awards, which are presented to the student-athlete with the highest cumulative GPA participating at the finals site for each of the NCAA’s 90 championships.

“Winning that award was great,” Anderson said. “To be at the biggest stage of college hockey and be recognized for academics was really cool. Especially with bringing home the national championship, it’s motivating to continue working hard in both athletics and academics.”

Kent Anderson playing in a hockey gameA life on the ice

Like many of his fellow Canadians in his hometown of Calgary, Anderson started playing hockey around the same time he started walking. He was fortunate to have an outdoor rink just a five-minute walk from his house.

“I played all sorts of sports growing up, but hockey was the one I loved the most,” he said. “It’s got all the sports in one—it’s a super-fast game, you need a lot of skill, you need to be strong. It’s a team game, but also everyone is so different individually. And it’s a lot of fun. Playing it at that young age, I grew to love it right away, and I didn’t stop.”

He was thrilled to be recruited to the Pioneers out of high school, drawn by the chance to play for the championship DU squad and its coach, David Carle.

“He’s the best coach in college hockey, and the best coach I’ve ever had,” Anderson said of Carle. “His ability to bring a team together is incredible—we all play for each other. And he’s a great guy on top of that, so even better.”

Kent Anderson smiling in a hockey jersey World of finance 

Anderson’s love of math and numbers also led him to the Reiman School of Finance at Daniels, which prepares students for careers in business finance, financial strategy, and investment and portfolio analysis. It also sets them up for work within financial institutions providing banking, investment and asset/wealth management services.

“Math and numbers are kind of my thing, and the whole world of managing money is really interesting—the different things you can do and the different areas of finance you can go into,” Anderson said. “And it’s an open field—you can do what you like. I like that flexibility.”

Anderson is looking to play professional hockey once he graduates and leaves the Pioneers, but he also sees a finance degree as a smart move for his future.

“If I play pro hockey, maybe I can use it to understand my contract better and figure out that part of life a little bit,” he said. “But I can’t play hockey forever. So having that degree is super-helpful, and for life after hockey, it will be awesome.”