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Old
09-08-2010, 04:39 PM
  #226
Badger36
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Originally Posted by RabidBadger View Post
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Wisconsin

Ah man, am I really prognosticating my team to an 8th place finish? Woe unto the republic. Well, no team was hit harder by graduation and early departures last year than Bucky. The team collectively lost 335 points of scoring from the guys who left....that's more than Mankato's entire team score last year. There is a decent, but not spectacular group coming in as recruits. Jason clark and Mark 1st Star Zengerle should be impact players at forward. Frankie Simonelli and newly poached, er decommit, Joe Faust will be nice additions on a blue line that just reloads. In all, 5 forwawrds and 3 D will be new faces in Madison.

Strengths: Defense and goaltending.

They lost 2 1st round picks and a 2nd rounder to the pros which is a hard hit to any team. They still have Jake Gardiner, John Ramage and Justin Schultz. Any one of those guys would be a top 3 d-man on any team. Joe Faust is a 4th round pick. This core is backed up by Craig Johnson who saw limited time because of the depth, but played great when called on. He's the 1st senior on the backline since the 07-08 season. Eric Springer is another reliable backliner to add to the mix. Gudmandson and Bennett were one of the top pairings in the NCAA last year in net. Bennett was out with an injury and never quite recouped. If he has fully recovered it gives the team 2 reliable goalies, but Gudmandson is the guy who will be relied on to steal a game or two.

Weaknesses: Lack of scoring depth, possibly coaching.

There should be 2 solid lines with Jordy Murray, Craig Smith, Derek Lee, 1st Star and Clark in the mix. UW usually has an unheralded senior have a career year...that'll be Sean Dolan. It's pretty slim pickin's beyond that. Kevin Patrick and Mark Osiecki were quality assistants, now head coaches. Gary Shuchuk has virtually no coaching experience and Bill Butters was the D coach at Minny under the Woogey Man. It remains to be seen how they'll do. To underscore the loss Osiecki, let's look at his resume: '97 NoDak assistant-National champs, '99 Green Bay Gamblers head coach- Clark Cup Champions, UW assistant- 2 trips to the finals, 1 National championship, USWJC- Gold Medal, hell yes! Good things happen where Oz goes.

Outlook:

This team will only go as far as the incoming class will take them. My esteemed colleague, GoBucky, and I agree there will be some growing pains initially but the team has potential to gel later in the season. There is enough talent for a deep run in the WCHA playoffs if they catch fire at the right time. An NCAA berth is not out of the question, but everything will have to fall in place perfectly. I doubt they finish lower than this and could finish high as 5th if the stars are aligned for them.

On a personel note; thank you Badgers for a great year! 2 more 1st team All Americans, a trip to the finals, and the program's 1st Hobey Baker
Agree. The first half of the season might be ugly, but the Badgers might surprise everyone in the 2nd half of the season and ruin someone else's postseason.
Im expecting a big year for Jordy Murrary. He was a good player last season and now he will have the chance to be a star. He has been criticized for being too small but he's a very solid player who can score goals if given the chance.
Im a little skeptical of the Badgers' goaltending. Ive never been all that impressed with Bennett. I saw him play a few times last season and he just didnt seem to have any confidence. I know he was recovering from injury but he just didnt look good at all. As for Gudmanson, he's a great goalie when he's on but he can also give up a few soft goals. IMO, his biggest problem is inconsistency.
One other thing worth nothing is that this year the Badgers will have 13 Wisconsin-born players and the last time they had that many homegrown players, they won the national championship. Not that I expect them to win the NC this year, but in a year or 2 its possible if these kids stick around..
I also agree with you on thanks to the Badgers for a great year. It would be easy to be bitter and disappointed about them losing in the NC game to BC, but it was great season with so many great plays and awesome moments. They were just 1 win away from it pretty much being a perfect season.


Last edited by Badger36: 09-08-2010 at 04:46 PM.
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Old
09-08-2010, 07:53 PM
  #227
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Duluth

A lot of people have this team penciled in to finish 3rd. Not so fast... they have a lot of key guys coming back, no doubt. Maybe another year of experience can take this team to the next level but I have my reservations. They didn't sweep anyone of note, lost to every DECENT non-con opponent, and lost a lot of lopsided games. They lost to Tech, for crying out loud! You can see my reservations about jumping on the Duluth bandwagon with other pollsters.

Strengths: Defense.

For all the talk of the big scorers on the team, they've quietly assembled a very good back line at the ramshackle DECC. Brady Lamb is an offensive force and Dylan Olsen had a very solid freshman campaign. The rest of the cast is solid, but not spectacular stay-at-home guys that won't cost the team the game taking bad risks. Throw in blue-chip recruit, Justin Faulk, and you have one of the better blue lines in the W.

Weaknesses: Lack of offensive depth, goaltending.

Rob Bordson was insurance the forward ranks would not be a one line pony with Justin Fontaine and the Connolly bros stacked on the top line (I know they're not related). Bordson is gone and there is no heir apparent to manufacture offense on the lower lines. Incoming freshman, Joe Basaraba, has potential to have a pretty good year, but freshman rarely dominate and carry their team in the WCHA. Travis Olesuk made big improvements in offensive output from his freshman year, but that was likely due to the Bordson effect. Kenny Reiter was okay last year, but hardly dominant and his backup, Aaron Crandall has no NCAA experience. Brady Hjelle was a decent backup but mysteriously chose to return to the USHL, much to blogger, Runnin With The Dogs, chagrin. I have a hunch he may end up in Madison.

Outlook:

The team was decent last year and missed the playoffs by a slim margin. The incoming class is pretty good wit some real impact players. If some guys step up offensively they can play their games a lot tighter and squeak out a few extra wins then they did last year. I think 4th place is about as good as they can hope for. If the top line is shut down and the the other lines don't step up then 7th place is not out of the question.

Lets all wish Duluth's eqipment manager, Chris Garner, a speedy and full recovery after receiving a bone marrow transplant last month. Best of luck, Chris!

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Old
09-09-2010, 08:55 AM
  #228
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I expect a good year from UMD, hope to see Scott Kishel step up now that he's an upperclassman. Looks like he's beefed up a bit this summer as well. Here's to hoping he can convince Justin Fontaine to sign with the Habs!

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Old
09-09-2010, 08:07 PM
  #229
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CC

This team took a lot of people by surprise the first half of last year staying near the top of the polls and the WCHA. The 2nd half was not so kind to Les Tigres and they plummeted to the bottom as many expected them to. They lost some very key guys in Bill Sweatt, Nate Prosser and Mike Testwuide, but there is still a lot to like about this team. Joe Howe performed very well in goal for a freshman and Rylan Schwartz lived up to his hype. The team was pretty young last year and there were no early departures so there are a lot of guys coming back who got valuable experience.

Strengths: Coaching, goaltending.

Scotty Owen, he who looks like Ron Jeremy's brother, gets the most out of his teams (except in the post-season). The team was young and the talent pool was not deep last year but CC put together a decent season reagrdless. Most of their losses were 1 goal games. Joe Howe was not a heralded frosh when he took the reigns in goal from Richard Bachman, whom the press had an immense man-crush on. He looked shaky the 2nd half but I think he was very good in a conference that eats weak goalies and few freshman make a big mark. Keep in mind he had 6 d-men who were underclassmen in front of him last year.

Weaknesses: Youth, lack of depth.

There are quite a few underclassmen on this year's roster. The group is growing up but still not ready for prime time. There are some key players at every position; Howe in goal, the Schwartz bros up front and Gabe Guentzel, who is a beast, on the backline. However there is not enough left in the tank after the top end guys to step up and be game changers for the team. I came across a CC blog whining about how there were no CC players on the College Hockey Blog's pre-season All WCHA picks: that's because there isn't a player on this team that stands out in the conference.

Outlook:

This is probably the highest they'll finish (5th place for those of you paying attention) and may finish low as 7th. A playoff berth is not out of the question if they play well and take advantage of a pretty favorable schedule by WCHA standards. Upperclassmen like Stephen Schultz, Tyler Johnson and Ryan Lowery will have to be big time leaders on the ice to carry a game when the top end talent falters.

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Old
09-10-2010, 10:40 PM
  #230
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Denver

Only Bucky was hit harder with offseason departures with DU losing Rhett Rhakshani and Tyler Ruegsegger to graduation and the early departures of 1st team All-Americans Pat Wiercioch (thank god for Badger fans he's not around to torch the team anymore!)and Chevy, as well as Sasquatch-like forward, Joe Colburne. You could argue DU was hit worse by losing a goalie of Chevy's calibre. With losses like that not even the homers at "Let's Go DU" are expecting much from the team. But DU is reloading nicely with impact freshman forwards Jason Zucker, Nick Shore and Beau Bennett on the way. This team can be a real wild card in the conference and I have good reason to believe they are still at least a dark horse contender.

Strengths: Defense.

Even without Wiercioch this is still one of the best units in the NCAA. There was some growing pains the past couple years with the relative youth of the backline. Now they're a veteran squad who has matured together and was pretty accomplished despite their lack of experience the past couple years. Matt donovan was scary good as a freshman and William Wrenn was solid as can be for a frosh. No player on the d-line finished in the minus category, which is pretty impressive.

Weaknesses: Goaltending.

This may not be so much a weakness as an unknown. Adam Murray looked like a freshman all around last year going 3-4-1 with a 3.8 GAA and .874 save%. After his big slice of humble pie he went to Toronto with a couple former DU goalies to work with an NHL goalie coach to "tweak" some things. We'll see if it pays off. I think between the offseason work and the prospect of losing the starting job to promising freshman, Sam Brittian, Murray will be pretty motivated this year. It seems no matter who they put in the crease they turn out well. Only St. Cloud and UW have had a successive string of quality goalies the DU has had in the past few years.

Outlook:

It's easy to say this team has lost too much and won't do anything this year. Well they've shed guys like Stastny, Trotter, Mannino, Bozak...and on, and have been competitive year in and out. The offense still has uber-playmaker Anthony Maiani and big goal scorers Kyle Ostrow and Jesse Martin. Luke Salazar was hampered by injuries last year after an impressive 25 point freshman campaign. Look for him to have a big-time rebound year. Throw in a very good freshman class and the deck is stacked for DU. If goaltending finds its rythym the team could place high as 2nd. I doubt they finish below 5th. They will be tested early with Vermont, BC, Bucky, NoDak and arch-rival CC as their 1st 5 opponents.

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Old
09-11-2010, 10:46 AM
  #231
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Originally Posted by RabidBadger View Post
Denver

Only Bucky was hit harder with offseason departures with DU losing Rhett Rhakshani and Tyler Ruegsegger to graduation and the early departures of 1st team All-Americans Pat Wiercioch (thank god for Badger fans he's not around to torch the team anymore!)and Chevy, as well as Sasquatch-like forward, Joe Colburne. You could argue DU was hit worse by losing a goalie of Chevy's calibre. With losses like that not even the homers at "Let's Go DU" are expecting much from the team. But DU is reloading nicely with impact freshman forwards Jason Zucker, Nick Shore and Beau Bennett on the way. This team can be a real wild card in the conference and I have good reason to believe they are still at least a dark horse contender.

Strengths: Defense.

Even without Wiercioch this is still one of the best units in the NCAA. There was some growing pains the past couple years with the relative youth of the backline. Now they're a veteran squad who has matured together and was pretty accomplished despite their lack of experience the past couple years. Matt donovan was scary good as a freshman and William Wrenn was solid as can be for a frosh. No player on the d-line finished in the minus category, which is pretty impressive.

Weaknesses: Goaltending.

This may not be so much a weakness as an unknown. Adam Murray looked like a freshman all around last year going 3-4-1 with a 3.8 GAA and .874 save%. After his big slice of humble pie he went to Toronto with a couple former DU goalies to work with an NHL goalie coach to "tweak" some things. We'll see if it pays off. I think between the offseason work and the prospect of losing the starting job to promising freshman, Sam Brittian, Murray will be pretty motivated this year. It seems no matter who they put in the crease they turn out well. Only St. Cloud and UW have had a successive string of quality goalies the DU has had in the past few years.

Outlook:

It's easy to say this team has lost too much and won't do anything this year. Well they've shed guys like Stastny, Trotter, Mannino, Bozak...and on, and have been competitive year in and out. The offense still has uber-playmaker Anthony Maiani and big goal scorers Kyle Ostrow and Jesse Martin. Luke Salazar was hampered by injuries last year after an impressive 25 point freshman campaign. Look for him to have a big-time rebound year. Throw in a very good freshman class and the deck is stacked for DU. If goaltending finds its rythym the team could place high as 2nd. I doubt they finish below 5th. They will be tested early with Vermont, BC, Bucky, NoDak and arch-rival CC as their 1st 5 opponents.
Not to be a hater or anything, but I question DU's heart. It seems like they really fell apart towards the end of last season and lost games that they probably should have won.

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Old
09-11-2010, 11:21 AM
  #232
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Not to be a hater or anything, but I question DU's heart. It seems like they really fell apart towards the end of last season and lost games that they probably should have won.
I'm with you on that one. The on ice spark plugs didn't seem to be there; the looked outright uninspired against RIT. I was going to mention something about the leadership X-factor, something I questioned last year, and summarily forgot to. I don't see any guys on this roster that compare to J.P. Testwuide to be the straw that stirs the drink.

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09-11-2010, 11:35 PM
  #233
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Bemidji, The Mighty Beavers!

This is going to be an interesting addition to the conference. I think a lot of people are still wondering if they are for real even after some very strong performances the past couple seasons. I'm not one of those as you can see by my very generous ranking. There was the Frozen Four appearance 2 years ago and they put together a good year last year before tailing off at the end and rolling over for Michigan in the playoffs. They seemed to have had a case of Denveritis. But they played well against good opponents beating Miami, taking 3 of 4 points against Northern Michigan and going 4-4 against WCHA competition (I'm including Omaha). Are the Beavs ready for the big boys now? We'll find out.

Strengths: Team speed, depth, experience.

The Beavers buzz around like angry hornets when they play. It's hard to get a body on them and few teams can skate with them. They were in the top 10 in offensive and defensive categories for most of last season so they are balanced at both ends of the ice. Matt Read is a gamebreaker for the forwards and Brad Hunt leads a mobile defense.There are a lot of guys from the FF appearance still on the roster; this squad has grown up together. Plus, they only lost one guy from their top 10 scorers. The goalies aren't bad either. I wouldn't be surprised to see Mathieu Dugas win the starting position from Dan Bakala...always go with the French Canadian goalie, eh?

Weaknesses: This is NOT the CHA!

The Beav starts their season facing NoDak, Duluth and St. Cloud; most people's picks for the top 3 teams in the conference. Welcome to the WCHA. This will be the toughest schedule this team has faced and is one of the toughest of any team in the conference. They are not being eased in by any means. If they split their first 3 series then you have to finally take this team seriously. It remains to be seen wether they can compete in the week-in week-out grind of a much deeper conference than they came from.

Outlook:

The schedule is harder but this team has had some very good showings against some of the top talent in NCAA recently. They won't finish higher than this and could finish low as 6th. I think having a mature team will help the transition of switching conferences. I credit Tom Serratore for bringing in good recruits to a small school in podunkville surrounded by recruiting giants of the WCHA.

I wish the best for Ben Kinne, a very good player who suffered a stroke in July. Here's to a full recovery of health and hopefully a return to the ice.

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09-12-2010, 11:54 AM
  #234
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Originally Posted by RabidBadger View Post
Bemidji, The Mighty Beavers!

This is going to be an interesting addition to the conference. I think a lot of people are still wondering if they are for real even after some very strong performances the past couple seasons. I'm not one of those as you can see by my very generous ranking. There was the Frozen Four appearance 2 years ago and they put together a good year last year before tailing off at the end and rolling over for Michigan in the playoffs. They seemed to have had a case of Denveritis. But they played well against good opponents beating Miami, taking 3 of 4 points against Northern Michigan and going 4-4 against WCHA competition (I'm including Omaha). Are the Beavs ready for the big boys now? We'll find out.

Strengths: Team speed, depth, experience.

The Beavers buzz around like angry hornets when they play. It's hard to get a body on them and few teams can skate with them. They were in the top 10 in offensive and defensive categories for most of last season so they are balanced at both ends of the ice. Matt Read is a gamebreaker for the forwards and Brad Hunt leads a mobile defense.There are a lot of guys from the FF appearance still on the roster; this squad has grown up together. Plus, they only lost one guy from their top 10 scorers. The goalies aren't bad either. I wouldn't be surprised to see Mathieu Dugas win the starting position from Dan Bakala...always go with the French Canadian goalie, eh?

Weaknesses: This is NOT the CHA!

The Beav starts their season facing NoDak, Duluth and St. Cloud; most people's picks for the top 3 teams in the conference. Welcome to the WCHA. This will be the toughest schedule this team has faced and is one of the toughest of any team in the conference. They are not being eased in by any means. If they split their first 3 series then you have to finally take this team seriously. It remains to be seen wether they can compete in the week-in week-out grind of a much deeper conference than they came from.

Outlook:

The schedule is harder but this team has had some very good showings against some of the top talent in NCAA recently. They won't finish higher than this and could finish low as 6th. I think having a mature team will help the transition of switching conferences. I credit Tom Serratore for bringing in good recruits to a small school in podunkville surrounded by recruiting giants of the WCHA.

I wish the best for Ben Kinne, a very good player who suffered a stroke in July. Here's to a full recovery of health and hopefully a return to the ice.
You could definetly make the arguement that the first 3 games are doing to be a WCHA hazing for Bemidji. Playing those 3 teams is a row is a heck of an introduction to the WCHA!

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Old
09-13-2010, 06:31 PM
  #235
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North Dakota:

Expectations are very high for the Grand Forks Green Giouxns this year; anything less than a FF aprearance will be considered a colossal failure and we'll hear the cries of the angry torch-bearing mob calling for Hakstol's head. They lost their leading scorer from last year, Chris VandeVelde, but there is a lot of returning talent. There is a ton of quality young guys coming back that have a year of WCHA and playoff experience under their belts. Chay Genoway will be back on a very deep blueline which gives them one of, if not the best player in the WCHA on the squad. Throw in a stacked incomng class highlighted by Derek Forbert and there is reason to have lofty ambitions for this team.

Strengths: Depth in all positions.

Genoway and Danny Kristo are the only stars on this team. That doesn't matter because they can roll 4 lines with scoring potential on all of them, not to mention 3 D lines that are solid in their own end with several guys that have good offensive upsides. Brad Eidsness has been solid in goal and has two years of experience. and didn't really have any shaky outings last year. In fact, the team was pretty young last year but only had 3 losses that were by more than 1 goal. They are more of a veteran team this year and should be improved in all areas.

Weaknesses: Post season play.

Things looked good when Dave Hakstol took a good, but not great, team to the championship game against a stacked DU team his 1st year as head coach. I don't think anyone was going to beat DU that year but NoDak could have made it more interesting if not for a parade to the penalty box. Then there were subsequent meltdowns in FF appearances and losses in the 1st round against New Hampshire and Yale that should have been winable games. You can't argue Hakstol's success as head coach. But, it is bewildering that the team seems to play its worst games, not to mention games that don't represent their playing style in the regular season, at the most critical times. They're almost certain to meet BC, Maine or some other eastern power in the playoffs this year. They need to shake the post-season monkey on their back and treat it like another game if they are going to do anything.

Outlook:

Everyone knows this is the very regretable final year of the Fighting Sioux moniker. This will be a motivator for the team to go out in a blaze of glory. If Hakstol can sell the heritage of the team and go Vince Lombardi on them when it matters most then they should be unbeatable at tournament time. The schedule is tough as always so getting to a high seed in the playoffs will be a dogfight unto itself. Talent-wise this team stacks up well with any of the other top contenders in the NCAA. It's only a question of if the team can hold it together when it matters most and do what it takes to reach their potential.

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09-14-2010, 05:39 PM
  #236
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St. Cloud:

If the bounces had gone there way last year it could have been St. Cloud playing in the FF instead of Bucky. They looked like they belonged in the post-season after so many previous letdowns. All time leading scorer Ryan Lasch and Garrett Raboin are big losses but the team is bringing back a lot of depth and experience and will likely be better this year.

Strengths: Goaltending, depth.

No team not named Miami can boast a better duo in net than the Huskies. Mike Lee looked shaky at times last year but he was a freshman thrown into the pressure cooker of playing goalie in a deep conference. He looked pretty good on a lot of outings as well. The offense has scorers on all lines and the defense, which was solid last year is reloading with a good deal of veterans.

Weaknesses: None, really. They just need need to be better in the post season.

Outlook: I flip-flopped on wether to have the Huskies or NoDak as my #1 projected team. The goaltending factor won out for the Huskies. Plus, St. Cloud has an edge in scheduling for the most part but finish pretty rough with series against Duluth, NoDak, UW and DU, not to mention they will have to face Miami 2 or 3 times this year. The loss of David Eddy, following in Jase Weslosky's footsteps of academic ineligibility, won't be too hard to absorb and he will likely be back after the fall semester. Note to student athletes: substitute your 40 ouncer and X-box controller for a textbook for 3 hours a week and you should be fine. You're not an Ohio State football player so teachers won't pass you just so you can play.

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09-16-2010, 09:26 PM
  #237
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SCSU can have the MacNaughton.Damn jinx.

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10-14-2010, 06:13 PM
  #238
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Rabid:

Good job on the team reports.

My two cents -

1) I think (in time) UNO and BSU will be better than most people think. And that will be a good thing for the WCHA IMO. Much more competition, and with 12 teams, the in-conference games become that much more critical.

2) UND is one of my picks to be in the FF come April (my aplogies for the Sioux fans, if this is some sort of jinx). My reason is quite simple - this team is loaded from top to bottom. Add in the straw that stirs the drink (read that Chay Genoway) and you've got the makings of a potential NCAA Championship contender. I think being humbled by Yale in the NE Regional last year was probably a valuable lesson that the team learned and the experience isn't likely to be forgetten when NCAA tourney time comes around again. This is just my prediction, so take it for what it's worth.

3) The team that's making a lot of noise right now is MTU. Sure, they did well against LSSU and NMU in the Superior Cup, but they open WCHA play this weekend against Mankato, who I thought played well against SLU this past weekend. So how well will Tech respond and are they starting to put it all together?

4) I think DU will be fine with their goaltending. In the few games that I saw Murray play in last season, he looked good. I think he'll be fine and if not, Sam Brittain looks like he can step right in. DU's first big test will come this weekend vs. BC.

5) The team that is still piqueing my curiosity as far as how they will or won't do is this season is Minnesota. No disrespect to the Gophers faithful here, but gotta ask the question: Will this year's Gophers be a team where everyone is all on the same page or a collection of individuals that just happen to play for the same team? I'd like to think (and hope) that it is the former and not the latter.

Thoughts?


Last edited by Oilers Chick: 10-18-2010 at 02:09 PM.
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10-14-2010, 06:59 PM
  #239
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5) The team that is still piqueing my curiosity as far as how they will or won't do is this season is Minnesota. No disrespect to the Gophers faithful here, but gotta ask the question: Will this year's Gophers be a team where everyone is all on the same page or a collection of individuals that just happen to play for the same team? I'd like to think (and hope) that it is the former and not the latter.

Thoughts?
Looked more like the former than the latter this weekend although there are still a couple things which need to be tightened (PK being one).

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Old
10-15-2010, 10:19 AM
  #240
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It's a great day for hockey! Aren't they all, though? Pretty good slate of games for this weekend with a few more conference tilts than last week.

The matchup up the week is North Dakota traveling to Bemidji for The Mighty Beav to christen a fancy-schmancy new arena. That new arena smell will be gone after the Sioux visit...HA! North Dakota has an edge having played an exhibition and 2 games on the road so they should be in game form. Bemidji will be looking to impress the home crowd and make a statement in their first WCHA game. I really wish I could watch this one.

Minny is taking on Dean Blais' Mavericks in what should be a very good undercard. The other Mavericks are taking on the surprising Houghton Dogs and CC and AA are squaring off, although it's really a non-con game for the Goldrush tourney.

There are a couple great non-con tilts highlighted by DU taking on NC Bah-stin College. This is another one I'd really love to watch. they played a great Game at The Denver Cup last year with DU winning 4-3. Miami and St. Cloud should be pretty good series as well. I'm betting the first game will be pretty fierce since I'm sure both teams got a good reaming after let downs to New Hampshire and Clarkson respectively. Rico and Motzko have a good way of getting their teams ready for blood after a bad loss. Duluth is taking on Providence, who represented themselves pretty well last week with a win over Northeastern last week. Bucky will facing the Geoffrion Bros and Alabama Huntsville, the lonely independent who the CCHA pushed off the plank.

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10-15-2010, 08:30 PM
  #241
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Looked more like the former than the latter this weekend although there are still a couple things which need to be tightened (PK being one).
And not so much the former tonight...you're spot on about the PK. When does Hill get fired, again? I know it's early, but everyone who has watched a a Goph game the past couple years knows Hill is the weak link. It's not like the backline doesn't have the talent to be better than they are.

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12-05-2010, 07:34 PM
  #242
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That SCSU pick isn't looking so good right now Rabid.Man are they underachieving.

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12-06-2010, 08:26 AM
  #243
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That SCSU pick isn't looking so good right now Rabid.Man are they underachieving.
That's a great segue to my mid-season team reports; I'm rating teams as under/over achievers or "right where they should be". Here they are in order of current standings:

Duluth: This is a team I underestimated. I still don't believe in them for some reason and they may continue to prove me wrong. I can't shake the feeling they're headed for a big letdown. Regardless, they are deep in all areas and LIVE for overtime games. Analysis: Overachievers in my book.

North Dakota: No surprises with this team. Pretty much everyone had them penciled in for a FF berth. They are off to one of the better starts than they have been under Hakstol despite a ruthless schedule. These guys are deep and Genoway and Kristo haven't even hit their potential yet. Analysis: Right where they should be.

Denver: What a stellar freshman class! This is one of the better impact frosh classes in the past decade of the WCHA. Goaltending was a question coming into the season but DU just reloads. Freshman Sam Brittian looks to be the next great one in a steady stream of high-end netminders for Gwoz. Analysis: I picked this team to finish 4th and I was well aware of their incoming class' potential so I'm not surprised by how good they are. Right where they should be.

Omaha: Chuck Schwartz from the 60 Minutes Badger Board was really the only person to peg this team's potential from the start. We shouldn't too surprised with the coaching staff they have but I don't think anyone else thought they'd do this well their 1st season in The W. Analysis: Overachievers!

Minnesota: Everyone knows this team has the talent on the roster to be a good team, but no one really expected much. The defense is, and will continue to be, THE weak spot. Goon posted a good write up about how there are too many prima donnas and a lack of roll players: here's the link http://ndgoon.blogspot.com/2010/12/t...got-to-be.html I agree with that summation. T-Don needs to get more kids in from the Iron Range ala Herbie. Analysis: Minny is right where they should be based on expectations but underachieving based on talent depth.

CC: Not too bad, but the schedule hasn't been overwhelming. They have one quality win against Denver. They better make the most of the next few games because the last 1/3 of their schedule is pretty brutal. Analysis: Right where they should be.

Minnesota State: These guys have managed to scrape and claw for points with a pretty brutal roster. Some of the losses have been of the one goal variety against good competition. They won't be a pushover for anyone, that's for sure. Analysis: Overachievers in a big way.

Wisconsin: The young Badgers have only been routed by North Dakota. Other than that they've been very competitive against top teams. The freshman class has been solid and the new coaching staff has risen to the occasion. I doubt anyone will want to see them as an opponent when Broadmoor time rolls around. Analysis: Right where they should be.

AA: There's no lack of fight in these guys. They've only been pasted twice by Duluth and Bemidji, respectively. The freshman class has been a nice surprise. These guys are way overachieving.


Bemidji...The Mighty Beavers!
I expected more from these guys given their veteran roster and foot speed. To be fair, the schedule was brutal for them, especially starting the season against NoDak and Duluth. They did just sweep Omaha, something no other team has done this year. Has the Mighty Beaver awoken? Analysis: I still consider them underachievers.

St. Cloud: What the frick? I'm hardly the only one with egg on their face having lofty expectations for this team. Pretty much every prognosticator, professional or otherwise, even the pre-season coaches poll, had these guys finishing 2nd to NoDak. They look bad and need to play more than one good period. Do I even need to say underachievers?

Tech: Things started out pretty well in Houghton and then they turned into the Tech of yore. They should be more competitive than they have been. No one expected much, but I think they are better than this and fall into the underachiever category.

All Rabid Badger team: (F)Jay Barriball, Minny. Ryan Stoa Jr. has been an inspiration on a ho-hum team. (F) Rylan Schwartz, CC. This kid has been as advertised and then some. (F) Matt Frattin, NoDak. Talk about making the most of a fresh start. Fratting has been a wrecking ball. (D) Justin Schultz, Wisc. He's the secret to Brendan Smith's success last season. (D) Kurt Davis, Mankato. If I could build my team around one player it would be KD. The guy would be a superstar if he played for a top team. (G) Sam Brittian, DU. Outstanding job as a freshman goalie, I already sang his praises above.

All Freshman Team (Brittian and Schwartz are omitted since they are with the big kids upstairs): (F) Jordan Kwas, AA. The kid is a threat every time he's on the ice. (F) Mark Zengerle, Wisc. 1st Star Zengerle is a rich man's Jordan Kwas. His on ice vision is superb. (F) Jason Zucker, DU. Two words, Power Forward. (D) Justin Faulk, Duluth. He's been arguably the best d-man on a deep team. (D) David Makowski, DU. He's one of the less-heralded recruits and has performed big time. (G) Aaron Crandall, Duluth. This kid was a cast off from UW. He's probably making Mike Eaves regret that decision with his play this year.


Last edited by RabidBadger: 12-06-2010 at 08:31 AM.
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12-06-2010, 01:29 PM
  #244
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Yes, let's take a blog post from a Sioux fan about the Gophers. Let me get my popcorn ready.

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12-06-2010, 01:52 PM
  #245
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Yes, let's take a blog post from a Sioux fan about the Gophers. Let me get my popcorn ready.
Yes, let's do. It was a pretty good assesment of the, *ahem*....situation in Dinky Town in my book. I don't always agree with Goon, but he does have some good observations. I didn't feel that article had a "kick a guy while he's down" tone. I've seen similar comments on the Goph forum on this site back in the day about the need to get the right guys instead of the top guys.

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12-06-2010, 02:12 PM
  #246
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Yes, let's do. It was a pretty good assesment of the, *ahem*....situation in Dinky Town in my book. I don't always agree with Goon, but he does have some good observations. I didn't feel that article had a "kick a guy while he's down" tone. I've seen similar comments on the Goph forum on this site back in the day about the need to get the right guys instead of the top guys.
I have to disagree. The entire article is fairly condescending and a shot at the Star Tribune's coverage. You can have role players be NHL draft picks; it's not one or the other and one of the things this year's team has over the last few years is a number of 20 year-old freshman role players. The WCHA is an older game and while it is great to get the top players, the leading scorer is a late-round pick in his fifth season and another leading scorer is an undrafted senior. Same thing happened the year before. Talent as an 18 year-old only gets you so far in the WCHA and if you look at the players who have a PPG average at that age this decade they are almost all leading their NHL teams.

If anything, the better point of the article is buried at the end about playing a more finesse style. That can actually be debated rather than "oh look people draft players from the U based on name recognition and it's disappointing a bunch of underclassmen aren't leading the league."

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12-06-2010, 02:17 PM
  #247
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I've had my share of go arounds with that guy.He is a bit delusional but a passionate AA fan.
What do you call him again?

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12-06-2010, 02:24 PM
  #248
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I have to disagree. The entire article is fairly condescending and a shot at the Star Tribune's coverage.
Really how so? List and example?
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In conclusion; this article isnít really a shot at the beat writers from Goal Gophers because I think for the most part they do a good job covering their team and they give me much reading enjoyment. Itís more of a refutation of a mind set that is out there in college hockey. I mean I know the Star and Tribune canít be overly critical of their team or they could lose access to the coaching staff and not be able to report on their team as closely as they would like.
That's condescending?

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12-06-2010, 03:38 PM
  #249
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Really how so? List and example?


That's condescending?
Good of you to drop by and put out this little fire I started. Keep up the good work in the blogosphere, muh'man

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12-06-2010, 05:24 PM
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Good of you to drop by and put out this little fire I started. Keep up the good work in the blogosphere, muh'man
Thanks! I await his refutation. Of the opposition fans that I have met over the years the Badger fans are the best they get it.

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