Wednesday, August 29, 2007

College Hockey Blogflash (August 29)

As the near-90° weather makes me stick to my chair, let’s stick (for the most part) to the recruiting wire for today... (Note: I understand that was perhaps the worst lead-in ever.)

● Mike McMahon’s Warrior Rink Rat blog has learned of a new defenseman, Frasier Allan, committing to Merrimack for the 2009 season. While playing for the Battlefords North Stars of the SJHL last season, and while amassing that league’s Defenseman of the Year honors, Allan tallied seven goals, 45 assists, and 52 points in 58 games. Allan also was in the running for the SJHL’s MVP honors. Read about it here.

● According to Chris at WCH, Michigan State has picked up a commitment from Zach Golembiewski for the 2009 season. Golembiewski will play for the NTDP U17 program this season. Read about it here.

More recruiting news at the WCHA blog...

● The WCHA Blog notes that Denver has picked up a commitment from Joe Colborne for 2008. Colborne, playing for the Camrose Kodiaks of the AJHL, tallied 20 goals and 28 assists last season.

● Also, the fine folks at the WCHA blog note that Josh Birkholz will be calling the U. of Minnesota his home for at least a little while in the future. Earlier today, it was announced that Birkholz will join the Gophers at some point around the 2009 or 2010 season.

● In addition, the WCHA blog (they’re busy folks over there.) has revealed its fifth-favorite WCHA arena - the DECC in Duluth, Minnesota. The hockey home to the Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs received high marks for good sightlines and a lively crowd, but was dinged a bit for the building’s age. Read about it here.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

College Hockey Blogflash (August 28)

Quick, short update for today...

● Waking fully from their summer hibernation, the RIT Tiger Hockey blog has posted an analysis of the RIT conference schedule, supplementing an analysis posted earlier in the month regarding non-conference Tiger games. Read about it here.


● Reports from WCH and Brad Elliott Schlossman state that North Dakota has picked up a commitment from Danny Mattson. Mattson, a forward who played at the prep level last season (19g-49a-68pts.), will be entering his junior year of high school. Mattson, who reportedly turned down offers from Minnesota and Wisconsin, will likely suit up for North Dakota at the start of the 2009 or 2010 season.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

College Hockey Blogflash (August 26)

Lake Superior State picked up a new commitment, according to MiCHO, in defenseman Ben Kitzmiller for the upcoming season. The Lambertville, Michigan-native Kitzmiller, who played last season for the NAHL’s Alpena IceDiggers, helped guide his team to the NAHL playoffs last season on the strength of his 13 goals, 19 assists, and 32 points in 59 games. Read about it here.

● The WCHA Blog, in its recurring 10-part series, has named Anchorage, AK as its fifth-favorite WCHA city. Access to the home of the Alaska-Anchorage Seawolves was a primary concern, but Anchorage received high marks for its city experience and ticket availability. Read about it here.

●It seems as though Merrimack’s fanbase is slightly concerned, as Merrimack athletic director Sean Frazier has departed for an assistant AD position at Wisconsin. Mike McMahon’s Warrior Rink Rat blog has a lengthy Q&A article regarding the Merrimack AD position, what qualities the future Merrimack AD should have, and, among other things, the future of Merrimack’s athletic program in general. Read about it here.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Back in Some Capacity...

Still trying to get things organized and ready for another collegiate semester, but I'm at my final destination at the least. Still waiting for my computer, though.

Big thanks to Donald for covering for me. Visit his blog, as he does quality work over there too.

Anyway, I'll try to post an update tomorrow.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

College Hockey (Substitute) Blogflash (August 23)

  • Our fine friends over at College Hockey News have updated their Summer Session series with looks at a couple of WCHA teams: Minnesota-Duluth and North Dakota. The Bulldog article talks about the frustration of losing 9 games by one goal and has some good quotes from Scott Sandelin. My favorite part of the article is a typo that says,
    "expect Duluth to disrupt the playoff picture towards the end of the year when they play suck top teams as Minnesota and North Dakota"
    Unfortunately for CHN it appears some of these Summer Session articles were written earlier this summer before rosters were finalized. The Sioux article talks about the great second half last season and Dave Hakstol mentions his expectations for the incoming class but the article says,
    "And another newcomer worth notice is former Alaska-Anchorage forward Shea Hamilton who will look to establish himself as a role player."
    Um ... Shea ain't on North Dakota's updated roster confirming early summer rumors that he would be gone. Writing 59 team summaries is tough job for any outfit. CHN has some excellent features and I really like the tale of the tape feature in their schedule section so there's lots of reasons to overlook the minor deficiencies in a couple of previews. I make plenty of mistakes myself (like not having a clue what "bullets" A.Allen uses).
  • Over at Inside College Hockey there is the ongoing A-Z series which picks players by their last names and profiles at least one from all 59 teams. Another pretty big bite to take and no doubt a difficult job. Dion Knelsen from the Nanooks and Geoff Kinrade from Michigan Tech are the latest updates in that series, L-Z remain. I haven't read all of the A-K's yet but for what I've read so far they get high marks.
  • Over at the third major college hockey site, USCHO there isn't any evidence of preseason coverage yet. I suppose they've learned how much work there is in trying to cover every team in some way. I wouldn't even recommend reading anything at the famous fan forum for at least another couple of weeks as the late summer fare isn't particularly stimulating.
  • The WCHA Blog has another in his series of Rink Rankings and puts DU's Magness at #6 in the league. The Rink Rankings though shouldn't be confused with his Road Trip Rankings, the latest in that list being #6 Madison; my favorite because there is lots of griping in the comments section. Anytime you list anything in the WCHA from top to bottom there are plenty of folks on the Internet to point out how wrong you are.
  • The only piece of real news since this blog's excellent owner A. Allen temporarily spurned posting here in favor of furthering his education is that Atlantic Hockey announced a deal with B2 Networks to webcast every regular season and playoff game for that league. $6 per game or $79.95 to see all the games from your favorite team. Hey parents time to bust out that VISA card again!
  • I'd be remiss if I didn't make mention of the 2nd best team blog in College Hockey. Care to take a guess who I think #1 is? I don't have too much interest generally in leagues outside of the WCHA but if you follow Merrimack at all then reading the Warrior Rink Rat is a must. Mike McMahon always has the up to date skinny and from my perspective does a great job.
  • Lastly, in case you didn't really want to guess who is the hardest working, most excellent College Hockey blogger covering his team is, then visit this joint.

Monday, August 20, 2007

A Brief Hiatus (on my part)…

Well, I’ll be making my journey back to school this Wednesday. In preparation for the upcoming semester, and partially due to the fact that I despise laptops, I will be shipping off my computer at some point today.

Therefore, unless I find an internet kiosk at some airport somewhere that isn’t too horribly expensive (which I doubt), there will be no updates from me until, at the earliest, the 25th-27th of this month.

I have talked to Donald of the UAA Fan Blog, and he has graciously accepted the helm here for the time being. If anything “big” and/or newsworthy occurs in the world of college hockey while I'm not here, Donald will post something here. Also, if Donald feels the need to post any type of update or commentary, he will do so as well.

College Hockey Blogflash (August 19)

● The US U-18 squad finished fifth overseas at the 2007 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament, defeating the Czech Republic by the score of 6-5 after a shootout. Likely among others, the WCHA Blog and the Let’s Go DU blog (1|2) have coverage spotlighting the win, the tournament, and some recruit-specific stuff.

● The University of New Hampshire Men’s Hockey Blog is in a celebratory mood alongside incoming 2008 recruit Kevin McCarey, as McCarey will play for the USNTDP U-18 squad this season. McCarey played for the USNTDP U-17 team last season, tallying 14 goals and 14 assists last season, which was good enough for the top goal-scorer spot among his USNTDP U-17 teammates. Read about it here.

Madison, Wisconsin ranks 6th in the WCHA blog’s continuing ten-part series listing the best WCHA cities. Madison, home to the Wisconsin Badgers, received low marks for its distance from other WCHA cities, but high marks for its plentiful bars and relatively cheap tickets. Read about it here.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Rollin’ on...

USCHO.com has a great article on the trip of four former Union hockey players and their followers.

Of course, I’m talking about the Rolling for Autism endeavor.

Union hockey alumni Dan Tatar, Jason Ortolano, Sean Streich, and Carson Strang are still chipping away at their massive rollerblading trip that began at the Georgia border on June 28. It looks as though they will be completing their voyage this Sunday, hitting the finish line in southern Maine.

So far, the movement has raised more than $100,000 towards autism awareness.

For more information, of if you want to chip in towards the worthy cause, check out http://www.rollingforautism.com.

College Hockey Blogflash (August 17)

Happy Friday, folks.

● The bullets, as you can see, are back from a vacation.

● CHN reports that Aaron Broten and John MacInnes will be inducted into the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame’s class of 2007. Broten played two years for Minnesota before going pro, in which he won WCHA Freshman of the Year in 1979-80, and recorded a still-standing Gopher record for most points in 1980-81 (47g-59a-106pts). John MacInnes coached at Michigan Tech from 1956-82, where he went 555-295-39 and won three national championships. Read the CHN article here.

● The US Under-18 Team playing in the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament picked up their first tournament victory yesterday, beating Slovakia 5-3. Their two previous tournament losses were to Russia and Finland, with both games finishing with 5-3 scores. Their final tournament contest will take place on Saturday, as they will take on the Czech Republic in a 5th place game. Multiple blogs are covering the action, including, among others, the UNH Men’s Hockey Blog and the WCHA blog, all of which have unique coverage.

Alaska picked up two new commitments -- both of whom are from Alberta, and both of whom played for the same team last season in the same league (the Alberta Midget Hockey League’s Red Deer Optimist Rebels). One of the new commitments is from Erik Slemp, a 5-foot-10, 183 pound 17-year-old forward who tallied 18 goals, 10 assists, and 28 points last season. The other, Kaare Odegard, is a 5-foot-10, 166 pound 16-year-old defenseman who tallied three goals, 12 assists, and 15 points last season. Read about it here.

● Now for something that I completely missed a while back, but is worth noting nonetheless. Recently, at his Robert Morris blog, Andrew Chiappazzi and the sport of hockey were the targets of a minor backlash. Mainly, one reader of the Colonials Corner blog thought hockey was illegitimate and irrelevant in comparison to the basketball and football programs that RMU currently puts forth.

So, in response, Andrew has posted a nice little explanation regarding why hockey is important to the greater good of the RMU athletic program, and why hockey should be the subject of praise, not mockery. As an outsider looking in, it’s a simple, dirty, and very correct explanation, in my opinion, and it gives some insight to the smaller-size CHA program.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

College Hockey Blogflash (August 15)

I’ve been gearing up for another college semester, so I’ve been a little busy as of late.

Jim O’Brien, despite opposing claims from his coach, will be leaving Minnesota after one season. Read the CHN article here.

Over at the WCHA blog, the World Arena, the hockey home for the Colorado College Tigers, was announced as the #7 WCHA arena in their recurring series. Read about it here.

Mike McMahon has a nice link to an article featuring Merrimack goaltender Andrew Braithwaite. Braithwaite was in Isreal recently competing in the World Jewish Hockey Championships. Interesting stuff. Read it here.

UPDATE: The WCHA blog reports that St. Cloud State has signed a new assistant coach in Mike Gibbons. Gibbons, currently a Minnesota high school hockey coach, previously worked as an assistant for Bemidji State, Northern Michigan, Colorado College, and Denver University. Read about it here.

Monday, August 13, 2007

College Hockey Blogflash (August 13)

Donald has posted a write up on the Alaska-Anchorage Juniors. Read about it here.

According to Western College Hockey, Bowling Green picked up a commitment from goaltender Nick Eno, who played for Vermont last year. Chris also reports that Alaska picked up a future commitment from defenseman Steven Hoshaw, who will likely play a pair of years at the Junior ranks before stepping up to Fairbanks. Read about it here.

Chris also reports two coaching notes: David Noel-Bernier will rejoin Nebraska-Omaha as an assistant, replacing the departing Rob Facca, and Chris Kostopoulos was hired as an assistant at Robert Morris. Read about it here.

The WCHA blog checks off its 7th favorite WCHA city in its recurring series: St. Cloud. The WCHA blog noted that the home to the St. Cloud State Huskies is Mankato like, with decent access from the Minnenapolis/St. Paul area and some general fun stuff, but points were
deducted for ticket sales practices. Read about it here.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

College Hockey Blogflash (August 9)

Mike McMahon at his Warrior Rink Rat has a nice little write-up on incoming Merrimack recruit Matt Moulakelis. Moulakelis, a 6-foot-1, 180 pound native of Hawthorn Woods, Illinois, played for the Chicago Steel of the USHL last season, where he tallied 7 goals, 12 assists, and 19 points in 55 games. McMahon notes that, “(Moulakelis) should be the type of player who will grind it out along the walls and in the corners, but, can score points when called upon.” Read about it here.

An update of yesterday’s blogflash... Despite assertions from the Ottawa Sun stating otherwise, according to the WCHA blog, Minnesota head coach Don Lucia noted that Gopher sophomore Jimmy O’Brien will not leave school and sign with the Ottawa Senators. Read about it here.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

College Hockey Blogflash (August 8)

Well, the fine folks at the WCHA blog have been busy this morning.

Firstly, in the third part of their ten part series, the WCHA blog revels its 8th favorite WCHA arena. That arena? Well, it’s the Alltel Center (or, the Midwest Wireless Civic Center if that particular corporate name floats your boat). The WCHA blog gave the hockey home for the Minnesota State-Mankato Mavericks high marks for, among other things, plentiful parking, but low marks for a crowd that can be hit-or-miss and some awkward seating angles. Read about it here.

Secondly, the WCHA is reporting a possible early departure at Minnesota. It is rumored that Gopher sophomore Jimmy O’Brien will be packing up his skates and signing on the dotted line for Ottawa, according to the Ottawa Sun. Read about it here.

Paukovich to Leave Denver.

The Let’s Go DU blog reports that Denver forward Geoff Paukovich will forgo his senior year and sign a contract with the Edmonton Oilers. An official announcement is expected to be made within the next 48 hours.

According to dggoddard at the Let’s Go DU blog, the Oilers reportedly gave Paukovich “an offer too good to give up,” however, terms of the deal have not been disclosed.

Before the beginning of his junior season last year at DU, Hockey’s Future gave Paukovich a 6.0 C prospect rating, noting that Paukovich is, “… a big center who has offensive abilities but is best suited as a two-way checking center,” and that “Paukovich has a noteworthy mean streak in him as well as the size to back it up.”

The 6-foot-4, 215 pound Englewood, Colorado native Paukovich last year, in 39 games, tallied eight goals, nine assists, and 17 points. In his 117-game collegiate career, Paukovich amassed 24 goals, 24 assists, and 48 points.

Paukovich, a member of the Denver University’s 2005 National Championship team, was drafted in the 2004 draft by Edmonton with the 57th overall selection in the second round.

UPDATE: USCHO.com says its official. You can also see the Let’s Go DU blog for more details.

(Photo courtesy of: hockeysfuture.com)

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Appert to Coach at RPI Through 2011-2012 Season.

USCHO reports that RPI head coach Seth Appert has signed a two year contract extension which will keep him at RPI through the 2011-2012 season.

“He has shown a willingness to meet challenges head on and a determination to succeed,” noted RPI president Shirley Ann Jackson on Monday.

Despite posting a 10-18-8 record in his first season with the Engineers, RPI did create moments of glory. RPI’s non-conference play last season, under Appert’s watch, was highlighted by tie games against Boston U., Quinnipiac, and Ohio State, and was further highlighted with a victory against Denver, where Appert spent nine years as an assistant coach, at Magness Arena.

In addition, RPI reigned victorious in the inaugural Governor’s Cup Championship Tournament in Albany, NY – the school’s first tournament championship of any kind since 1998.

“We have set a strong foundation for future success and we will continue to move this program forward with the support from Kevin Beattie, the RPI campus community and our terrific fans in the Capital Region,” noted Appert.

In addition to his continuing work at RPI, Appert was also selected recently as an assistant coach for the U.S. Under-18 Select team that will compete in the Ivan Hlinka Under-18 Memorial Hockey Tournament taking place later this month in Piestany, Slovakia and Hodonin, Czech Republic.

(Photo courtesy of: rpiathletics.com)

Monday, August 06, 2007

College Hockey Blog Mini Round-Up (August 6th)

Well, some personal notes. One, I friggin’ hate my ISP. But with that said, who doesn’t? Two, it’s my berfday today. I will celebrate my 19th trip around the sun by sleeping for approximately 22 consecutive hours.

Enough with my vast personal problems. With unparalleled reporting accuracy (unless I miss, forget, or typo the heck out of something), it’s time to look at the crazy universe that is the College Hockey Blogosphere. A slightly slow week, but there’s still some notable stuff.

And speaking of this crazy universe, and the sun, and those other planets and whatnot, let’s start in Anchorage, as one blogger looks to the heavens to pass the time

Donald at the Alaska-Anchorage Fan Blog takes a look at the five Seawolf seniors for the upcoming season. In regard to what these seniors will need to do to achieve success in 2007-’08, Donald notes,

“So what do these 5 guys need to contribute this season to help the team succeed? The first and most obvious is leadership. They need to set a good example to the underclassmen both on and off the ice. They should be fostering a great attitude among the team. This is a pretty good group in terms of that sort of leadership…. If they can each slough off whatever distractions arise (yes, yes... other than homework), and enjoy playing their last year in a Seawolf sweater, then it will be a season well spent.”

Meanwile, up the road in Fairbanks, Eric Carlson at the Alaska hockey blog reports two new commitments. Tim Revell, a 19-year-old Kingston, Ontario native, is one of those newly-committed kids for the 2008 season. Revell played for the Kingston Voyageurs of the OPJAHL last season, picking up 38 goals, 34 assists, and 72 points. The other young lad (born in ’90), Bob Marks, played for the Russell Stover Major Midget team out of Overland Park, Kansas, where he amassed 30 goals, 47 assists, and 62 points.

Now moving further to the east, we take a look at the west. Whaa?!

The WCHA blog, in the third part of its ten part series, reveals Mankato, Minnesota as its eighth-favorite WCHA city. Mankato, naturally home to the Minnesota State-Mankato Mavericks, received high scores for its apparent plentiful bars, but low scores for the apparent lack of stuff to do within the city. With that said however, those low marks are apparently partially negated with Minneapolis-St.Paul being not too far away.

(Apparently) Staying in Minnesota, we check in with a blog that’s also meandering towards some direction.

Something that I prolly should have posted a while back, the Minnesota-Duluth-based Runnin’ With The Dogs takes a look at the recent UMD hockey television broadcast situation. According to RWD, “The WDIO-TV station manager, Dave Poirer, says “Advertisers aren’t interested in supporting UMD hockey broadcasts.”’ Thus, the lack of advertising dollars warranted the removal of UMD hockey broadcasts from that particular network’s airwaves. Anyway, it’s an interesting little read.

Wandering into Michigan...

The Blog that Yost Built reports that Michigan’s picked up a verbal commitment in Kevin Lynch for the 2009 season. Lynch, a forward, will play with the NTDP this season, and is reportedly “a very nice two-way center” according to WCH. Lynch reportedly passed up playing for the Plymouth Whalers of the OHL to play for the Wolverines.

And speaking of the NTDP...

Mike McMahon, making his triumphant return from... um... a place, at his Merrimack Warrior Rink Rat Blog reports that Former Merrimack goaltender Joe Exter will take over as the goaltending coach for the U.S. NTDP.

In addition, Mike has a nice little write-up on the incoming Andrew Letellier. Letellier played for the Portland Junior Pirates of the Atlantic Junior Hockey League last season. In regard to Letellier’s work at the junior level, McMahon notes that,
“(Letellier) showed some touch with the Pirates notching 58 points in 39 games. He seems to be a balanced offensive player who isn’t just a passer or a shooter. Some other writers who I have talked to who are more familiar with (the AJHL) than myself say that he is a very smart player, who is rarely out of position.”

And speaking of the NTDP (again), we close our mini round-up by spotlighting four products of the program...

● The Terrier Hockey Fan Blog reports that four Boston Terriers made the trip to Colorado Springs, Colorado for the U.S. Junior National Team evaluation camp. Those four Terriers, sophomores Brian Strait and Luke Popko and freshmen Kevin Shattenkirk and Colin Wilson, are among 45 other players that will be competing in intra-squad contests as well as contests against teams from Sweden and Finland.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Hobey Hopefuls.

Back from a momentary hibernation. Contrary to popular belief, I am still alive.

Just would like to point you folks at a recent article from a little while ago.

Elliot Olshansky at CSTV takes an early stab at projecting the Hobey Baker finalists for the upcoming season. Among others, Olshansky spotlights New Hampshire’s Kevin Regan, Michigan’s Kevin Porter and T.J. Hensick, North Dakota’s T.J. Oshie, Michigan State’s Jeff Lerg, and Vermont’s Joe Fallon as players to look out for.

EDIT: Lemme pull back the reigns here. Scratch Hensick, as I flubbed up a bit. Completely zoned out his signing/already serving his four years not too long ago. (Actually, Elliot was nice enough to e-mail me about this issue.)

Yes, even I will make a mistake. :-D

Mini or regular Blog Round-Up tomorrow. (Perhaps the tomorrow after tomorrow, as I am experiencing some minor technical difficulties.)

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