Men's Ice Hockey, 1990-94
Gruden became the first NCAA Division I All-American in Ferris State Athletics history as a result of being named to the American Hockey Coaches Association's (AHCA) All-America Team in 1993-94. He also was the first Bulldog player in 12 years to achieve All-Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA) First-Team honors and finished as the runner-up for the CCHA's Player of the Year Award. A eighth-round pick of the Boston Bruins in the 1990 NHL Entry Draft, Gruden netted 40 goals and 64 assists for 104 total points in 155 collegiate contests at Ferris State. The standout defenseman also recorded 77 penalties for 163 minutes. He ranks first in career games played by a Bulldog defenseman along with third in goals and sixth in assists at his position. His 16 goals in 1992-93 represents the most single-season lamplighters ever recorded by a Bulldog defenseman. He netted a school single-game record tying four goals while also notching three assists for seven total points against Notre Dame on Jan. 11, 1994. A member of the 20th anniversary All-Time Ferris State Hockey Team, Gruden played under both head coaches Bob Mancini and Bob Daniels as a collegian. His play helped Ferris post a 21-16-4 mark and advance to the CCHA Championship Tournament Semifinals in 1992-93. Gruden was voted the squad's 1993-94 Most Valuable Player after being honored as the Steve Banonis Most Improved Player in 1990-91. A two-time team captain, Gruden was voted the CCHA's Best Offensive Defenseman in 1993-94 and earned honorable mention All-CCHA accolades in 1992-93. Gruden went on to play professional hockey in the NHL with the Ottawa Senators, Boston Bruins and Washington Capitals organizations. He also spent time in the International Hockey League (IHL) and the American Hockey League's (IHL) with the Grand Rapids Griffins, Detroit Vipers and Providence Bruins and one season professionally in Germany. An IHL All-Star, Gruden earned the distinction of being named the IHL's Fastest Skater in the 1997 skills competition. The Virginia, Minn., native presently resides in Rochester Hills, Mich., along with his wife, Polly, and their three children.