Chat about College Hockey
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INCH Archive: Chats
Joe Gladziszewski (1:59 PM)
Hello and welcome to Inside College Hockey's weekly chat at ESPN.com. We'll be here for the next 30 minutes taking your questions on an interesting and somewhat controversial week that passed and looking ahead to this weekend and the rest of the season.
Ryan (Grand Forks, ND)
Do you think the Sioux have finally got over that hump and are going to make that run to the title?
Jess Myers (2:02 PM)
Which title? They're a dozen points behind Colorado College in the race for the MacNaughton Cup, and with the Tigers essentially finishing the season at home, I think that title is out of reach for the Sioux. Beyond that, with the talent on the North Dakota roster, I think you would be crazy not to consider them contenders for the WCHA playoff title and a fourth straight trip to the Frozen Four. But as for being "over the hump" -- ask me in another week. Three wins in a row is not something to get too excited about.
d'arcy 100 mile house, bc
If Denver wins the WCHA regular season by one or two points will the league put an asterisk next to it? Also, why didn't they just play the 5 minute overtime before Saturdays game after admitting the blown goal call from Friday night.
Joe Gladziszewski (2:03 PM)
There will be no asterisk, and as far as the playing of an overtime the following day, it can't happen. Several instances in all sports happen where leagues/officials admit to mistakes, but that doesn't change the outcome of the game and doesn't cause it to be played again. Even though error was admitted, the final score stands: Denver 3, Wisconsin 2.
Joe (Denver, CO)
How do you think Colorado College has been playing? They are a young team, but with the games remaining they have a majority at home. Do you think they have a legitimate shot at a Frozen Four in Denver given their youth?
Jess Myers (2:06 PM)
The Tigers have put themselves in an excellent position to win the WCHA regular season title thus far, and with their remaining schedule, I would be surprised if they finished below second place in the league. But when I've been asked why we've ranked Denver ahead of CC, I've responded that the Tigers' youth at key positions (especially in goal) would scare me come late March. Still, with the West Regional being played in their own building, I'd consider them a good bet to make the Frozen.
Joe (Rt. 11)
Well it must be ECAC Hockey is the standings seem like they are upside down. Is Dartmouth finding its stride after losing 150 pts this off season? What must Clarkson do to finally put an 8-10 game win streak together? What should we expect from the most unpredictable conference?
Joe Gladziszewski (2:09 PM)
The only thing we can expect is the unexpected. Dartmouth I think, has proven to be what they are: a talented team with a great first line that has the potential to beat anyone in the nation but will also lose some games and turn in shaky performances because of how young the Big Green's lineup is. Clarkson has to get some momentum, and play with a sense of urgency. They're in the mix for an NCAA bid, and even though they're in third place they have games in hand on the teams ahead of them in the league standings. Focus, work ethic, and urgency are Clarkson's keys down the stretch.
Justin H (Denver, CO)
I was at both Games in Denver this past weekend and was amazed at the "last second goal" by Wisconsin that was waived off, which was later deemed a mistake by the Ref. However, Saturdays game infuriated me, not because Denver lost,Wisconsin outplayed Denver, but because the SAME ref was looking the other way to "make up" for his mistake the prior night. He reviewed not 1, not 2, but 3 goals Saturday, he let the game get out of hand by not calling various tripping, interference, and holding penalties that were most definitely occurring,which resulted in a fight later in the game, where 10 players in the box.I'm not usually one to question the ref's but this guy flat out blew it. How should the WCHA respond and what can be done to prevent this type of thing in the future?
Jess Myers (2:11 PM)
This is an ugly situation all around, and there are clearly no winners. The WCHA has recently responded to Wisconsin's protest of the Friday night result, denying it and saying that the referee's call (and the final score) stands. As for the future of Randy Schmidt as an on-ice official, the league has made no move toward discipline or anything else. Although, since this was the second time this season that the league has issued an apology for a call by the same guy, don't be surprised if he's quietly relieved of his stripes sometime in the future.
I know michigan has fewer losses and is in first in the ccha but do you think they might be a little overrated. If you look at they're schedule it really has not been as demanding as miami's in my opinion. I think we'll how good they really are after this next stretch of eight games. MSU (2) ND (2) NMU (2) and Miami (2). thanks
Mike Eidelbes (2:17 PM)
You don't get to 20-2-0 and 13-1-0 in league play if you're a pretender. Michigan is a very good team. That said, it's fair to question their strength of schedule so far, as their most impressive win is an OT victory against Boston College at the season-opening Ice Breaker. The rest have come against teams at or below .500. We'll learn more in the coming months when they have series against Notre Dame (this weekend) and Miami, Michigan State, etc.
Brett (St Paul, MN)
John Harrington has been coaching the D-III St John's hockey team for a few years and with some success. Do you think he is a candidate for a D-I job or is that too big of a jump for a coach?
Jess Myers (2:19 PM)
Eight or 10 years ago I'd have put Harrington on the short list for just about any job opening in the WCHA. He was a finalist for the job at UMD, his alma mater, when they hired Scott Sandelin. Today I'm not so sure. He's done great with the Johnnies, and I think he might be comfortable enough that this will be his last stop on the coaching trail. Still, I think he'd be an outstanding D-I coach, and should be considered the next time there's an opening.
Quinnipiac has been on a tear in the ECAC of late, do you see them winning the league? How close are they to becoming a big-time team?
Quinnipiac hasn't lost since Nov. 30. But with a terrible strength of schedule and a 2 week hiatus from league play, do you see the Bobcats dropping in the PWR or any ranking for that matter even if they win @ Holy Cross and sweep a decent Niagara squad?
Jon (Hamden, Ct.)
How do you think the fact that Quinnipiac plays a large part of the last half of their season on the road will factor into where they stand in the ECAC at the end of the season?
Joe Gladziszewski (2:21 PM)
Three questions on Quinnipiac, and why not? They've got the longest unbeaten streak in the country at 8-0-1 in their last nine games. We'll have more on the Bobcats in this week's ECAC Hockey notebook at INCH, but one thing that stands out to me about recent games is that they're starting to score some goals. In this nine-game streak, they've scored three or more in eight games. Their offensive prowess was never a question, and head coach Rand Pecknold accurately predicted at the beginning of the year that the first few months would be tough after losing Reid Cashman.
Nate (Starkville, MS)
I am a Bemidji State Graduate so I am interested in learning what is up with the CHA. Does it have a future? Will the WCHA allow BSU to join? In my opinion the CHA should fold and Atlantic hockey should take Niagara and Robert Morris, Alabama Huntsville should replace UNO in the CCHA and UNO and BSU should join the WCHA. This makes so much sense on all levels and reduces traveling distances for all teams. What do you think? Could it happen?
Mike Eidelbes (2:27 PM)
I doubt it. The WCHA said during the offseason that it's not considering expansion at this time and there's no way the CCHA is trading Nebraska-Omaha for Alabama-Huntsville. My thought for a solution is keeping the CHA intact until the wishes are known of potential Canadian schools joining the NCAA.
GOON (Grand Forks)
Whose the favorite for the HObey this year in your mind?
Mike Eidelbes (2:29 PM)
Boston College's Nathan Gerbe currently tops our Hobey Tracker, followed by Michigan's Kevin Porter. In my opinion, those two are far and away the front-runners. I know detractors take issue with Gerbe's one-game suspension earlier this season for violating a warning secretly issued by Hockey East, but he's carried a young Boston College team that was racked by injuries and off-ice issues for the better part of two months, which is why I think he deserves the nod over Porter.
Jerry, Houghton MI
I've heard some stories of a possible outdoors hockey game coming to the WCHA because of the popularity and success of the Winter Classic this year. How true is this and if so, where would it be?
Jess Myers (2:30 PM)
I covered this in depth in my WCHA notebook last week, but here's the condensed version: The University of Minnesota is talking about a hockey game at their new 50,000-seat open-air football stadium sometime after it opens in 2009, and folks in Denver have been talking for a few years about putting an ice sheet down inside the Broncos' stadium to play at least two hockey games -- likely a CC-DU game followed by an Avalanche game. No time frame on that one. Sounds like they're waiting for a financial commitment from the Avs to make it happen, as making and maintaining outdoor ice in Denver's warmer, sunnier winter climate would be mighty costly.
Joe Gladziszewski (2:31 PM)
Thanks for the questions. That's all of the time we have for today. We'll be back next week at 2 p.m. for more college hockey discussion.