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 (David Archambeau)
Michigan Tech celebrates its dramatic double-overtime victory over Bowling Green for the 2017 WCHA championship on March 18 (photo: David Archambeau).

Each week during the season, we look at the big events and big games around Division I men’s college hockey in Tuesday Morning Quarterback.

Jim: Well, conference championship weekend is in the books and the NCAA field is set.

Before we get to that, though, I want to offer congratulations to the six champions: Air Force, Harvard, UMass Lowell, Michigan Tech, Minnesota Duluth and Penn State. Each team for one reason or another has a great storyline to both their season and their tournament wins.

Two, though, stand out. Both Michigan Tech in the WCHA and Penn State in the Big Ten needed double overtime before they finally broke through for the game-winner.

Talk about drama.

The fact that Michigan Tech was able to earn their victory on home ice after what became a very successful experience to move the WCHA tournament back onto campus added to the drama. Watching video from the game, you can see fans almost hanging from the rafters. Nate Ewell from College Hockey Inc. told me on Saturday night that fans were lining up 29 hours before the game. So to say that the experiment of playing the entire WCHA tournament on campus certainly worked well.

Which brings me to the Big Ten. Another tournament filled with the dramatic, the crowd at Joe Louis Arena was hardly one to write home about. Three nights and five game barely drew 10,000 fans. You know that league intimately, Paula, so I’m guessing that the thought of moving next year’s tournament to campus sites, at least right now, seems appealing.

Paula: First, I also congratulate all six champions. It was a great weekend for college hockey wherever it was played, and the storylines – as you suggested – should make for a lot of interest in the regionals and the Frozen Four.

As for the Big Ten, the thought of moving the tournament to campus sites has always been appealing to me, not just now. I know that the tournament drew well in St. Paul for the two years it was played there, but it was abysmal in Detroit in 2015 and this year. The crowd size was insulting. Thank goodness the hockey itself was a very fitting sendoff for the college game in Joe Louis Arena.

Beyond the poor attendance at JLA, I am eager for campus sites for other reasons. There are areas of the country where it’s been difficult to draw fans to arenas for all kinds of reasons, ranging from economic to geographic. The campus sites will insure, at least, a good showing from the home crowd. And I know from talking to players and coaches that even when a team is the visitor, an electric, hostile crowd is still an electric crowd.

I covered the WCHA Final Five in Grand Rapids, Mich., in 2016 and there were very few people in Van Andel Arena then, too. I’m so glad the WCHA made the smart move it did after that tournament. I’m really looking forward to next year’s Big Ten playoff format. There’s nothing worse than an empty building to counteract outstanding hockey.

Jim: Well, unfortunately, when you talk about an empty building counteracting good hockey, we’re at NCAA regional weekend which often produces disappointing crowds. This year, I think three of the four regionals will have decent atmospheres for some of the games. Obviously, Fargo, N.D., has been sold out for a while and, if history repeats, North Dakota fans will pack that venue for both semifinals (and possibly the final, too, even if the Fighting Hawks lose in the semifinals).

UMass Lowell’s fans have been scooping up tickets in Manchester, N.H., quickly, though the atmosphere when Minnesota faces Notre Dame could be pretty quiet (and if Lowell loses to Cornell, Sunday’s final will be somewhat empty).

Providence should be good for a few thousand fans at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center, just a few miles from the PC campus. And the fact that either Harvard or Providence are guaranteed a spot in the final should make for a decent atmosphere for Saturday’s final.

But that leaves Cincinnati. Our bracketologist, Jayson Moy, has been raising concerns for this venue for quite some time. We’re going to learn quickly how well Penn State fans travel given that the venue is still nearly seven hours away from State College, Penn., but (and this isn’t a knock on any of the four teams’ fans) I’d be surprised if there were more than 2,000 fans on either day.

Paula: The arena in Cincinnati will be nearly empty – and not just because there isn’t a local team to help fill it.

Cincinnati is a terrible choice for a regional.

In college hockey terms, it’s pretty remote. Miami is just up the road, but the RedHawks haven’t yet flourished in the NCHC. Ohio State is a hundred miles away, but Buckeye hockey fans don’t travel en masse. In terms of college hockey, it’s off the beaten path. It’s the closest regional to where I live and it’s a horrible, construction-filled, five-hour drive down I-75 from my corner of mid-Michigan. The venue is only so-so and there isn’t a lot to draw fans to Cincinnati beyond the hockey.

I do not understand why Cincinnati was awarded not one, but three regionals: 2014, 2016 and this year. You’re not alone, Jim, in wondering if the event will draw 2,000 fans on either day.

Jim: My guess – and this is what makes the regional setup a difficult one for the NCAA – is that Cincinnati was likely one of the only venues in the what is considered “the west” that bid for the Midwest regional. That’s the challenge that goes along with using a regional site structure for this tournament. Personally, I’m hoping that the success of the WCHA using campus sites this year and, hopefully, the Big Ten next season might show more coaches that resorting to a campus site structure would be great for the NCAA tournament. That’s a conversation for another day, though, as I’m sure people want to hear some thoughts on the NCAA field.

So I’ll pose the question: which is the most challenging of the four regions?

My answer is Fargo. You have host North Dakota to contend with and the team with the unenviable test of facing the Fighting Hawks in round one is Boston University. The Terriers themselves have tons of depth and talent, but also have struggled of late to play with the lead. If BU falls behind, I’m sure they’ll have the chance to come back as they’ve proven all postseason. But falling behind against the host in a raucous atmosphere might be difficult.

On the other side of that draw you have Minnesota Duluth, the NCHC champs, and Ohio State, which has a good power play, but I’m not sure is in the same class as the Bulldogs.’

There’s also the possibility that Duluth and North Dakota meet in the finals for the second time in a week. The NCHC final had a chippy undertone to it. I can only imagine what a game with a Frozen Four berth on the line could bring out in these two.

Which region do you think is toughest?

Paula: Without question the West regional. While I think that Duluth is the best team in that regional – and may be the best team in the country – you have North Dakota at home and a talented, tenacious BU team. I do not see Ohio State as a problem for Duluth, in spite of the Buckeyes’ potentially explosive offense.

Once upon a time, there was a great debate about East versus West hockey, about the alleged finesse play of Eastern teams versus the alleged grittiness of Western teams. The debate about that dynamic has lessened in the last decade because of how the approach to the game has played. Everyone has video of everyone else. Nothing’s much of a surprise anymore in terms of on-ice systems or physicality of play. There are differences in recruitment pools, for sure, but even in that there is significant overlap once you go down below what are considered some of the more elite programs in the game.

All of that having been said, I think the NCHC is as chippy as you say, Jim – and gritty and super physical and harkening back, perhaps, to the old WCHA. I think that regional in Fargo is going to produce some amazing hockey.

I will say, though, that the Northeast regional promises some very good hockey, but for a different reason. That field seems to have the most parity. I think Lowell is the best team in that field in spite of Minnesota’s top seeding, but I look at the four teams in that regional and can see any one of them emerging, depending on the consistency of their play in a given game.

Do you see any chance of a dark horse emerging from any of the regionals?

Jim: I think the best chance of a major upset might come from the East regional in Providence. The Friars are playing an incredible team in Harvard and would then have to face either Air Force or Western Michigan in Saturday’s final, but the fact that the games are played so close to campus (remember, this happened two years ago and the fourth-seeded Friars won a national title) I think could be the edge that Providence needs.

How about you? Who’s your biggest dark horse?

Paula: Penn State – but only if the Nittany Lions play the way they did in the Big Ten tournament rather than with the inconsistency they displayed during the regular season. Their defense was extraordinary in Detroit. If the Nittany Lions play in Cincinnati like they did in Detroit, they will prove incredibly difficult to defeat.

Besides, after last weekend in Joe Louis Arena, Penn State knows how to play big games in front of small crowds.

  • Vinnie Vega

    Wait for it…there is is! Penn State is Paula’s dark horse. I am shocked… Mine is Michigan Tech. Though I agree with Jim, given that PC is at home.

    • MN_Wild

      The suspense was riveting.

      • Vinnie Vega

        …but you knew it was coming.

        • MN_Wild

          I think she played it really well. Said OSU had no chance and MN was not the favorite in their region. I thought the way she was going would lead to a similar comment about Penn State. But, not so fast.

  • Vinnie Vega

    Wait for it…there is is! Penn State is Paula’s dark horse. I am shocked… Mine is Michigan Tech. Though I agree with Jim, given that PC is at home.

    • MN_Wild

      The suspense was riveting.

      • Vinnie Vega

        …but you knew it was coming.

        • MN_Wild

          I think she played it really well. Said OSU had no chance and MN was not the favorite in their region. I thought the way she was going would lead to a similar comment about Penn State. But, not so fast.

  • Let’s roll BU AND Goofs!!! HAU HAU HAU

    • Vinnie Vega

      Isn’t it illegal for Wisconsin fans to root for Minnesota…in anything? They WILL take away your beer and cheese allotment you know.

      • Let’sPlayHockey

        Usually the WI folk scoff at Minnesotans. Then they move to MN for a better job/lifestyle and the tune changes.

        And the turds bring the pickle relish and baby mustard jerseys with them. The horror…..the horror.

        • jdhockeyboyz

          I have 2 of them in my family, and 1 of them might just read this, HA. Grew up in MN, live over there with Wisco, Packer jerseys on Sunday, cushy state jobs in St. Paul during the week. In my mind those jerseys are spinach and puce, RIP Don Riley.

        • Go pack! ;-)

      • I have a bunker full of these rations, don’t worry

        • DrunkTrainPolka

          .
          am i safe to assume that its all left over from Y2K? ;)
          .

          • Let’sPlayHockey

            or one of the many, many pow wows?

          • More like from last weekend

      • gimruis

        Plus Minnesota is going to start Sunday liquor sales in July now too!

        • UofMGoldenChokers

          AMEN!

    • Scott Stone

      Cmon, Wisco! Jump on the UND bandwagon, MY GUY!

      • No can do Scottie 2 hottie. I’m a goofs guy now. #ONGOOFS

        • Denver_hockey

          You can’t call them goofs if you’re on their bandwagon… c’mon man.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Wisco is all sorts of confused….

          • Goofs 4 life!!!!!

  • PiGuy

    I’m tired of lower seeds getting home games in the regionals like Providence and North Dakota. This is something that need to be fixed. As a side note I’m going with Air Force as my dark horse.

    • gimruis

      Well technically neither one is playing at home. North Dakota is a “host” team in Fargo but their home rink is in Grand Forks. Providence isn’t a “home or host” team in their regional, as Brown is the host. I understand what you’re saying, but you also have to realize the technical portion of it. Plus, North Dakota’s horde of fans often times turn a neutral site into a home crowd anyways.

      • Gerry G

        if you don’t believe that just ask Denver fans what the Magness looks like on UND weekends and Denver is 1000 miles from Grand Forks

        • UofMGoldenChokers

          Helps that Denver has a lot of UND alumni living there. I’m sure some even have season tickets to DU.

          • DU_Fan

            Correct. When I talk to UND fans at the game, a huge majority live in the Denver area, half have DU season tickets.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Did ya leave for Cincy early?

          • DU_Fan

            No sir, Now they are saying 6″, gonna leave tomorrow morning. UND game starts at 3:00 in Cincy. We will have plenty of time to get to hotel, grab a bite, and watch the game.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Nice. Weather people usually suck at the forecast. They said we were supposed to get 14 inches about a month ago……didn’t even get a dusting.
            I’m trying to plow through a bunch of work today so I can take it easy tomorrow. By game time, I definitely don’t want to be doing anything.

          • DU_Fan

            Now they are all over the place, ten minutes ago. All stations agree 80 today, but differ wildly on snow totals (4″-14″). Couple we go with live south of us, and forecasted for 18″. They called and want to leave today. I called Frontier and they agreed to waive change fee, we are leaving at 1:55 this afternoon. Hyatt said extra night was not a problem. Luckily, my neighbor can feed, walk and take care of my greyhound, and we have a big doggie door.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            At least the airline was able to accommodate you to get our early. Sounds like no one knows what the weather will be like.

          • DU_Fan

            Yep. Flying Frontier is not the most stable plan, though. They got into big trouble with FAA during last storm. Used weather as an excuse for mechanical issues and crappy pilot scheduling, and got caught in a major way. Just walked the dog in a t-shirt. Don’t have to tell you how weather changes here.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Ha ha, been there. Tropical one hour, blizzard the next. Although the neighbors thought I was a psycho as I would be out shoveling the driveway when it was below zero.

          • DU_Fan

            Better to shovel than have someone slip and cost your homeowners insurance. I’m sure you have the same 24-hour time-frame where you have to clear your walk.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            The addition to the subdivision we live in actually doesn’t have sidewalks for some reason. Not sure why they didn’t put them in

          • DU_Fan

            If that’s the case, you are a very good neighbor. :-) Gotta get ready to leave for the airport. Don’t know how bad the security lines are.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            All the neighbors, for some reason are packers fans……so I’m sure they already don’t care for me as a Vikings fan.

          • DU_Fan

            HAHAHA! That can be hairy..

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Although, there is a house full of Sioux fans about half a block up the road. I should probably stop by sometime.

          • DU_Fan

            Made it. Get your work done?

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Still have some to do….but I did need something to do until game time. Shouldnt take real long…so the morning will be me basically just drinking coffee and blasting music. Telework is great.

          • DU_Fan

            I hear you, but it depends on your company. Obviously, for you it is wonderful.:-) Have to see when games start tomorrow. Brought my HDMI cable, just in case good games are not televised.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Most times I’m not in our office anyway. Mainly out on field work. But if I have a wrap up week or planning week, I’ll probably work at least half the week from home. Much better for work/life balance. Nice rolling out of bed at 655 instead of just after 5.

          • DU_Fan

            I hear you. Plus, eating dinner with family always nice.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            They wait till I get home anyway since I’m the cook 99% of the time :)

          • DU_Fan

            I am the king of the barbecue. Love those steaks, burgers and ribs. Here we do it year round, your weather permit that?

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            I’ll grill in the winter. Unless its a blizzard out there. Too many months with no grilling would not be good. Using the smoker in the winter is a little harder.

          • DU_Fan

            Hang out your green Sioux flag, maybe the neighbors will stop by. Gonna grab a light meal. Good luck tomorrow, will definitely watch. Looks like your is the first game televised. Think I will catch the AF-WMU later game on HDMI, can’t believe that game is not televised at all.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Not even on? Weird. I thought they were all on some channel or online.

            Hopefully we come out with some pressure, that has been our problem sometimes with not getting going quick. Enjoy the evening, I’m sure I’ll chat with ya tomorrow.

          • DU_Fan

            Will do. The AF-WMU is online on ESPN3. That’s the one I’ll hook up my HDMI cable to the TV and watch. Later..

          • Denver_hockey

            You’re starting to get me worried. I’m on Frontier, leaving for Cinci tomorrow. I heard it’s just supposed to be rain though here.

          • Denver_hockey

            Grand Forks -> Denver
            OR
            Denver -> Grand Forks
            Take your pick. Nothing against Grand Forks, but it’s not Denver.

  • Let’s roll BU AND Goofs!!! HAU HAU HAU

    • Vinnie Vega

      Isn’t it illegal for Wisconsin fans to root for Minnesota…in anything? They WILL take away your beer and cheese allotment you know.

      • Let’sPlayHockey

        Usually the WI folk scoff at Minnesotans. Then they move to MN for a better job/lifestyle and the tune changes.

        And the turds bring the pickle relish and baby mustard jerseys with them. The horror…..the horror.

        • jdhockeyboyz

          I have 2 of them in my family, and 1 of them might just read this, HA. Grew up in MN, live over there with Wisco, Packer jerseys on Sunday, cushy state jobs in St. Paul during the week. In my mind those jerseys are spinach and puce, RIP Don Riley.

        • Go pack! ;-)

      • I have a bunker full of these rations, don’t worry

        • DrunkTrainPolka

          .
          am i safe to assume that its all left over from Y2K? ;)
          .

          • Let’sPlayHockey

            or one of the many, many pow wows?

          • More like from last weekend

      • gimruis

        Plus Minnesota is going to start Sunday liquor sales in July now too!

        • UofMGoldenChokers

          AMEN!

    • Scott Stone

      Cmon, Wisco! Jump on the UND bandwagon, MY GUY!

      • No can do Scottie 2 hottie. I’m a goofs guy now. #ONGOOFS

        • Denver_hockey

          You can’t call them goofs if you’re on their bandwagon… c’mon man.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Wisco is all sorts of confused….

          • Goofs 4 life!!!!!

  • PiGuy

    I’m tired of lower seeds getting home games in the regionals like Providence and North Dakota. This is something that need to be fixed. As a side note I’m going with Air Force as my dark horse.

    • gimruis

      Well technically neither one is playing at home. North Dakota is a “host” team in Fargo but their home rink is in Grand Forks. Providence isn’t a “home or host” team in their regional, as Brown is the host. I understand what you’re saying, but you also have to realize the technical portion of it. Plus, North Dakota’s horde of fans often times turn a neutral site into a home crowd anyways.

      • Gerry G

        if you don’t believe that just ask Denver fans what the Magness looks like on UND weekends and Denver is 1000 miles from Grand Forks

        • UofMGoldenChokers

          Helps that Denver has a lot of UND alumni living there. I’m sure some even have season tickets to DU.

          • DU_Fan

            Correct. When I talk to UND fans at the game, a huge majority live in the Denver area, half have DU season tickets.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Did ya leave for Cincy early?

          • DU_Fan

            No sir, Now they are saying 6″, gonna leave tomorrow morning. UND game starts at 3:00 in Cincy. We will have plenty of time to get to hotel, grab a bite, and watch the game.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Nice. Weather people usually suck at the forecast. They said we were supposed to get 14 inches about a month ago……didn’t even get a dusting.
            I’m trying to plow through a bunch of work today so I can take it easy tomorrow. By game time, I definitely don’t want to be doing anything.

          • DU_Fan

            Now they are all over the place, ten minutes ago. All stations agree 80 today, but differ wildly on snow totals (4″-14″). Couple we go with live south of us, and forecasted for 18″. They called and want to leave today. I called Frontier and they agreed to waive change fee, we are leaving at 1:55 this afternoon. Hyatt said extra night was not a problem. Luckily, my neighbor can feed, walk and take care of my greyhound, and we have a big doggie door.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            At least the airline was able to accommodate you to get our early. Sounds like no one knows what the weather will be like.

          • DU_Fan

            Yep. Flying Frontier is not the most stable plan, though. They got into big trouble with FAA during last storm. Used weather as an excuse for mechanical issues and crappy pilot scheduling, and got caught in a major way. Just walked the dog in a t-shirt. Don’t have to tell you how weather changes here.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Ha ha, been there. Tropical one hour, blizzard the next. Although the neighbors thought I was a psycho as I would be out shoveling the driveway when it was below zero.

          • DU_Fan

            Better to shovel than have someone slip and cost your homeowners insurance. I’m sure you have the same 24-hour time-frame where you have to clear your walk.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            The addition to the subdivision we live in actually doesn’t have sidewalks for some reason. Not sure why they didn’t put them in

          • DU_Fan

            If that’s the case, you are a very good neighbor. :-) Gotta get ready to leave for the airport. Don’t know how bad the security lines are.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            All the neighbors, for some reason are packers fans……so I’m sure they already don’t care for me as a Vikings fan.

          • DU_Fan

            HAHAHA! That can be hairy..

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Although, there is a house full of Sioux fans about half a block up the road. I should probably stop by sometime.

          • DU_Fan

            Made it. Get your work done?

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Still have some to do….but I did need something to do until game time. Shouldnt take real long…so the morning will be me basically just drinking coffee and blasting music. Telework is great.

          • DU_Fan

            I hear you, but it depends on your company. Obviously, for you it is wonderful.:-) Have to see when games start tomorrow. Brought my HDMI cable, just in case good games are not televised.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Most times I’m not in our office anyway. Mainly out on field work. But if I have a wrap up week or planning week, I’ll probably work at least half the week from home. Much better for work/life balance. Nice rolling out of bed at 655 instead of just after 5.

          • DU_Fan

            I hear you. Plus, eating dinner with family always nice.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            They wait till I get home anyway since I’m the cook 99% of the time :)

          • DU_Fan

            I am the king of the barbecue. Love those steaks, burgers and ribs. Here we do it year round, your weather permit that?

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            I’ll grill in the winter. Unless its a blizzard out there. Too many months with no grilling would not be good. Using the smoker in the winter is a little harder.

          • DU_Fan

            Hang out your green Sioux flag, maybe the neighbors will stop by. Gonna grab a light meal. Good luck tomorrow, will definitely watch. Looks like your is the first game televised. Think I will catch the AF-WMU later game on HDMI, can’t believe that game is not televised at all.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Not even on? Weird. I thought they were all on some channel or online.

            Hopefully we come out with some pressure, that has been our problem sometimes with not getting going quick. Enjoy the evening, I’m sure I’ll chat with ya tomorrow.

          • DU_Fan

            Will do. The AF-WMU is online on ESPN3. That’s the one I’ll hook up my HDMI cable to the TV and watch. Later..

          • Denver_hockey

            You’re starting to get me worried. I’m on Frontier, leaving for Cinci tomorrow. I heard it’s just supposed to be rain though here.

          • Denver_hockey

            Grand Forks -> Denver
            OR
            Denver -> Grand Forks
            Take your pick. Nothing against Grand Forks, but it’s not Denver.

  • DrunkTrainPolka

    .
    GO TECH GOLD!

    MTU… its my dark horse, white pig, blue giraffe, and possibly even my mauve turkey!

    HA!
    .

    • Vinnie Vega

      Pink elephant?

      • DrunkTrainPolka

        .
        i will take it!
        .

    • Let’sPlayHockey

      Rainbow Unicorn?!!

    • St

      Go “other Huskies”!

  • DrunkTrainPolka

    .
    GO TECH GOLD!

    MTU… its my dark horse, white pig, blue giraffe, and possibly even my mauve turkey!

    HA!
    .

    • Vinnie Vega

      Pink elephant?

      • DrunkTrainPolka

        .
        i will take it!
        .

    • Let’sPlayHockey

      Rainbow Unicorn?!!

    • St

      Go “other Huskies”!

  • Fishhawk

    Michigan and Michigan State are easy drives to Detroit and both played Thursday night yet only 3387 people showed up. Are their fans that lame? Is Detroit that much of a sheet hole? Is the “everyone makes it” playoff system that uninspiring? Combo of all?

    • Vinnie Vega

      I travel for work and Detroit is right up there w/Houston and Atlanta for me, in terms of cities that I don’t care for, don’t feel safe in, not aesthetically pleasing…

      • Sparky

        Come on Vinnie, Atlanta is beautiful. Granted, downtown ATL is no dream, but anywhere outside of the city proper (where 90% of the metro lives) is beautiful.

        • Vinnie Vega

          It’s the driving.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            7 lanes on each side of the best stand still traffic I’ve ever been in…..

          • Vinnie Vega

            It’s brutal, and their beltway system is mayhem.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            I haven’t been there in about 9 years…..but I cant imagine it is any better. Each of the probably 8 times I’ve been there was just absolutely brutal. But like Sparky said…..the burbs are nice.

          • Vinnie Vega

            I worked for a Company HQ’d in Stone Mountain, and yes I agree, very nice. Great in the winter, not so good between May 1st and October 1st.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            The Buford area around the mall of Georgia is pretty nice. Winters were pretty good. I typically hate a lot of places in summer. Too damn hot.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Agreed

        • Vinnie Vega

          Used to go to Buckhead when I went there for business and it was great. Not the same Buckhead anymore, unfortunately.

          • Sparky

            Correct, Buckhead is not what it used to be. Too bad, once upon a time it was pretty awesome.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Also did business on the GT campus, nice little oasis….and a short walk to the Varsity!

          • Sparky

            True….but walk no more than 2-3 blocks off campus and you better be packing.

          • Vinnie Vega

            LOL, NO doubt!

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            What’ll ya have?

          • Vinnie Vega

            Exactly!

      • gimruis

        I’ll take Detroit over Chicago right now. I feel bad for anyone who is attending the Frozen Four there in April. Terrible, terrible traffic, a dumpy airport, and wall to wall people.

        • Friarsgirl

          I went to the FF at the Joe in 85, we were told not to leave the hotel or go anywhere unaccompanied. Still a fun time except for my Friars losing to RPI thanks to Adam Oates.

        • UofMGoldenChokers

          Midway is so easy to fly into. I always go in there instead of Ohare.

        • Denver_hockey

          HELL NO. Chicago is better than a dumpy city with the Frozen Four in a dumpy football field. Detroit should be banned from hosting FF after 2010.

    • Rich Neal

      When Lowell went to Michigan State in 1994 and 1996 the attendance wasn’t bad. Why not Denver, North Dakota, Minnesota, Michigan State and Wisconsin in the west? Manchester has had good attendance as has Providence. Albany last year was a nice trip, nice rink. The Garden (Boston) had 12,000 for the HE finals Saturday, why not have one of the regionals there? Having the four #1 seeds host isn’t a bad idea, but not many schools have a 10,000 seat capacity

      • Vinnie Vega

        The problem is, you can’t predict in advance who the #1 seeds will be and arenas want to book their venue as far in advance as they can. Also, let’s face it, when the Garden can book a first rate musical act for $75-$150/ticket and fill every seat, it’s not hard to see why arenas won’t book the Regionals.

    • gimruis

      I’ve wondered that myself. I thought hockey was big in Michigan. Don’t they have like 5 or 6 D-1 teams? Plus two huge schools within 90 minutes of Detroit? Doesn’t make much sense to me why hockey would fail like that in a state like Michigan. I think they need to re-name Detroit. Hockeytown Failure.

    • Roaring Aardvark

      The two last-place B1G hockey teams also had teams playing (and winning 3 of 4) men’s basketball national tournament games that weekend, so there was *that*…

  • Fishhawk

    Michigan and Michigan State are easy drives to Detroit and both played Thursday night yet only 3387 people showed up. Are their fans that lame? Is Detroit that much of a sheet hole? Is the “everyone makes it” playoff system that uninspiring? Combo of all?

    • Vinnie Vega

      I travel for work and Detroit is right up there w/Houston and Atlanta for me, in terms of cities that I don’t care for, don’t feel safe in, not aesthetically pleasing…

      • Sparky

        Come on Vinnie, Atlanta is beautiful. Granted, downtown ATL is no dream, but anywhere outside of the city proper (where 90% of the metro lives) is beautiful.

        • Vinnie Vega

          It’s the driving.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            7 lanes on each side of the best stand still traffic I’ve ever been in…..

          • Vinnie Vega

            It’s brutal, and their beltway system is mayhem.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            I haven’t been there in about 9 years…..but I cant imagine it is any better. Each of the probably 8 times I’ve been there was just absolutely brutal. But like Sparky said…..the burbs are nice.

          • Vinnie Vega

            I worked for a Company HQ’d in Stone Mountain, and yes I agree, very nice. Great in the winter, not so good between May 1st and October 1st.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            The Buford area around the mall of Georgia is pretty nice. Winters were pretty good. I typically hate a lot of places in summer. Too damn hot.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Agreed

        • Vinnie Vega

          Used to go to Buckhead when I went there for business and it was great. Not the same Buckhead anymore, unfortunately.

          • Sparky

            Correct, Buckhead is not what it used to be. Too bad, once upon a time it was pretty awesome.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Also did business on the GT campus, nice little oasis….and a short walk to the Varsity!

          • Sparky

            True….but walk no more than 2-3 blocks off campus and you better be packing.

          • Vinnie Vega

            LOL, NO doubt!

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            What’ll ya have?

          • Vinnie Vega

            Exactly!

      • gimruis

        I’ll take Detroit over Chicago right now. I feel bad for anyone who is attending the Frozen Four there in April. Terrible, terrible traffic, a dumpy airport, and wall to wall people.

        • Friarsgirl

          I went to the FF at the Joe in 85, we were told not to leave the hotel or go anywhere unaccompanied. Still a fun time except for my Friars losing to RPI thanks to Adam Oates.

        • UofMGoldenChokers

          Midway is so easy to fly into. I always go in there instead of Ohare.

        • Denver_hockey

          HELL NO. Chicago is better than a dumpy city with the Frozen Four in a dumpy football field. Detroit should be banned from hosting FF after 2010.

    • Rich Neal

      When Lowell went to Michigan State in 1994 and 1996 the attendance wasn’t bad. Why not Denver, North Dakota, Minnesota, Michigan State and Wisconsin in the west? Manchester has had good attendance as has Providence. Albany last year was a nice trip, nice rink. The Garden (Boston) had 12,000 for the HE finals Saturday, why not have one of the regionals there? Having the four #1 seeds host isn’t a bad idea, but not many schools have a 10,000 seat capacity

      • Vinnie Vega

        The problem is, you can’t predict in advance who the #1 seeds will be and arenas want to book their venue as far in advance as they can. Also, let’s face it, when the Garden can book a first rate musical act for $75-$150/ticket and fill every seat, it’s not hard to see why arenas won’t book the Regionals.

    • gimruis

      I’ve wondered that myself. I thought hockey was big in Michigan. Don’t they have like 5 or 6 D-1 teams? Plus two huge schools within 90 minutes of Detroit? Doesn’t make much sense to me why hockey would fail like that in a state like Michigan. I think they need to re-name Detroit. Hockeytown Failure.

    • Roaring Aardvark

      The two last-place B1G hockey teams also had teams playing (and winning 3 of 4) men’s basketball national tournament games that weekend, so there was *that*…

  • Greenie

    Regarding the use of campus sites for regionals, I like the idea. But unless the home team is in the final, actual attendance — butts in seats — won’t be much better. The difference is that 2,000 fans in a 5,000-seat arena looks and feels better than 2,000 fans in a 10,000-seat arena.

  • Greenie

    Regarding the use of campus sites for regionals, I like the idea. But unless the home team is in the final, actual attendance — butts in seats — won’t be much better. The difference is that 2,000 fans in a 5,000-seat arena looks and feels better than 2,000 fans in a 10,000-seat arena.

  • HuskyNation

    Put the West regional in Denver, Midwest in Omaha, East in St Paul or Chicago and the Northeast anywhere else.

    • Vinnie Vega

      So, one west, one almost west, one midwest, and one east. Sorry, doesn’t work for me. 2/3 of the programs are located east of the Mississippi.

      • HuskyNation

        True,but if those teams can’t fill a stadium when its only a 2 hour drive from campus put the regionals in hockey cities that will fill arenas

        • Vinnie Vega

          So, only teams that play in your region can fill arenas? Oh, ok.

          • Nowheresville

            Well when 10 of the top 11 teams in the country in terms of attendance are in the NCHC or B1G….

          • Vinnie Vega

            Top 11?, you had to squeak in another team, eh?

          • Nowheresville

            11 is the cutoff for drawing 5k fans. So of the 11 teams that draw more than 5,000, 9 of the top 10, or make it even easier and say the top 8, period.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Thereby cutting out #9. I see how that works.

          • Nowheresville

            Again, when the best and only thing you’ve got to work with is #9, you’re kind of making the argument for me.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Well, as a UML STH, I couldn’t let it slide. You’re also making the assumption that because regular season attendance #s are good, that the trend would continue for the regionals. Not sure that’s the case except in North Dakota.

          • DU_Fan

            Aren’t you being a slight bit hypocritical? You are the one always pointing out how UML has such a plethora of fans. When someone uses attendance as a meter of judgement, you are quick to point out the quantity of eastern teams or sparsity of western ones. Other than UML, Boston area fans don’t drive more that 30 miles to a regional, to see their teams play.

          • Vinnie Vega

            I’m quick to do it? It’s the only time I’ve ever done it.

          • DU_Fan

            Once again, facts. That excuse was in the very first reply you gave to HuskyNation.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Again facts, if you can find any other day that I’d done it, I’d agree.

          • DU_Fan

            .I will take that challenge when I get some free time to look back. Might take a while with all your posts.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Knock yourself out.

          • Vinnie Vega

            UMV, Maine, UNH all travel well. Where are you getting your facts?

          • DU_Fan

            Guess you didn’t major in Geography. Speaking of facts, are UMV, Maine, and UNH “Boston area” schools? Please read what I stated, don’t try to put words into my post.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Seriously, why do you need to get insulting. I know where the hell these schools are. Every one is within 4 hrs driving from Boston.

          • DU_Fan

            I didn’t know you considered 4 hours as driving distance. I honestly don’t know how many of the fans of the teams you mentioned will travel to TD Gardens for a Regional.

          • Vinnie Vega

            I can’t give you hard #s because I don’t have them and really don’t have the time or motivation to look them up, I just know that those 3 schools a re generally well represented when we play them. You are the one telling me that outside of UML none of the Boston schools travel, I’m asking how do you know that?

          • DU_Fan

            Only speaking from experience traveling to Providence, Albany, and Manchester to watch DU play. I am always surprised at lack of fans when BC and BU were there. At Providence in 2015 there were about 1500 (my estimate only) BC fans, a ton more than PC had. After they lost the first game, they scattered back home, leaving a ghost town for the finals.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Sad, but yes, BU especially and to a lesser degree BC, never show up in #s at our games. Not sure why, but they are right in the city, so there are plenty of other things going on.

          • DU_Fan

            I would hope BU fans would fill their allotment of tickets to go to Fargo. Every fan should be able to get tickets from their college for the Regionals. Most prioritize the same as DU, major donors, season ticket holders by longevity, then public sale. Other then affordability, I feel there is no excuse.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Fargo’s not the easiest place to get to from Boston. I don’t think you’ll see more than 1000 BU fans out there.

          • DU_Fan

            According to the NC$$, that’s no excuse. They state, “you have to fly anyway”. I hope those that do go get extra tickets. They can scalp them outside Scheels Arena and pay for their trip.

          • Friarsgirl

            I rode 2 1/2 days on a bus from Providence to Fargo in 1983 to see the Friars in the then Final Four. So much fun but not sure I’d do it again! In fact the newspaper headline read “you can’t get there from here’ accompanying a diagram.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Wasnt 1983 in Grand Forks?

          • Friarsgirl

            I’ll never get the hang of these typing phones- I inadvertently wrote ‘to’ instead of ‘thru’ ( :

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Eh, either way, that is a loooooooong drive.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Thought about moving to the Boston area at some point for work….which would be nice just for amount of hockey one can watch. I thought it was weird having random tuesday or wednesday games, but that would actually be nice to go see some on those days, and then catch the Sioux on the weekends.

          • Vinnie Vega

            I think I counted 10 rinks within 10 miles of my house. We have two here in town. We’re also right between UML and Merrimack and within a 90 min drive of 13 other D-1 schools, plus who knows how many D-3 schools. It’s a pretty nice place to live for hockey, no doubt. Plus the fishing is excellent and the beach is right here. We’ve got the mountains as well.

            Now for the downside. If you’re used to friendly outgoing mid-westerners, you’re not gonna get that here. It take these folks a while to open up. We’ve lived here in the same neighborhood for 12 years and we still have ‘Hey’ Neighbors, and my wife is from this town. Outside of the immediate family here, our best friends out here are either from W.PA, Ohio, or upstate NY.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            We were out in Boston/Maine when the Sioux played in the ice breaker last year. Loved it. Everyone was trying to warn us about the “massholes” but everyone we talked to was really nice and outgoing.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Lucky you. Did you do much driving?

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Speak of the devil…..to “avoid” traffic, we stayed up in Nashua and then drove down to the Alewife station to take the train into downtown…..cant find enough expletives for that traffic on highway 3. Longest 30 miles of my life…ha ha ha

          • Vinnie Vega

            Well, you hit 3, 128 and 2. Two of the worst commutes out here. LOL

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Yeah, it was brutal. Was a good way for the kids to get a nap in the afternoon, though. Now the drive up to Portland, that was really nice, as was the drive up to Acadia.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Yeah, once you clear Kittery, it’s nice…just loooong. We love Acadia.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            I wish we had an office in Portland, seemed like it would be a nice place to live. Was only there for the couple days of the tourney, but it was fun.

          • Sparky

            I am laughing here a little DU. Only a DU fan would know about these places out east…lol. I cannot recall the last time UND was sent to the east coast for the NT. I’m sorry, but this is just so funny….lol. DU has been shafted beyond belief when it comes to the NT.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            I believe it was Manchester in 2009.

          • DU_Fan

            Sure was..

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            If I’m not mistaken, that was the game where big dumb Joe Finley only had to clear the puck up off the glass to kill the last 10 seconds and he throws it into the stands and the faceoff is in our zone and New Hampshire ties it up and then wins in OT. Damn Finley.

          • Friarsgirl

            I know you were at the Dunk as was I. Many schools unfortunately, including Providence now dole out tourney tix to big donors and alumni shutting out the loyal season ticket holders. I’ve been a season ticket holder for the last 39 years, suffered through the bad years but kept going for love of the team and CH. I’m not the only one who here who was put on a ‘waiting list’ for the last 4 regionals and HE championships and I only got tickets to the FF (to see my Friars win their first title)3 hours before puck drop ( with an hour drive to get there). Attendance for the 2 games PC played at the Dunk was around 14,200 total and allegedly based on that the NCAA is now placing teams closer to home so their fans can attend. A great idea if people weren’t shut out just because they didn’t donate a building.

          • DU_Fan

            The “attendance” figures are tickets sold. There were less than 1200 actual fans in the seats for the finals. I know because I asked one of the ushers, who they did not send home. If you caught the game on TV, you know how empty the Dunk was.

          • Friarsgirl

            TV viewers are shut out this year if they don’t have ESPNU. I don’t and was blocked from watching the selection show on the WATCH ESPN app. Fortunately my friend got our tickets at the box office months ago, we were going no matter which teams got in.

          • DU_Fan

            All games are on ESPN3, on internet. I know it is inconvenient but you can always hook PC to TV and watch your team play. DU-MTU game is relegated to ESPNews, talk about minor station.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            At least there probably wont be a basketball or lacrosse game on prior to your game on ESPNews…..I cant even count the number of times our game has come on late due to something stupid on before it…..

          • Denver_hockey

            Get SLING TV 7 day trial with ESPNU. Cancel after the regional tournament and you won’t be charged and get to watch ALL the games. The ESPN3 games can be watched on the ESPN app without a login.

          • HuskyNation

            My point is that with the population density and the so called huge hockey fans the 2 regionals less than 2 hours apart that they should be sold out.

          • Vinnie Vega

            There are other things to do besides hockey (well, not for me…). Population density brings distractions, cultural diversions, parking that costs an arm and a leg…

          • DU_Fan

            I totally agree with you. I am sure you also do the “other things”. Most metropolitan areas have other entertainment that competes for fans dollars. A lot of hockey fans in Denver have both AVS and DU tickets, I am sure that is the same everywhere. Wonder how many BC, BU, and UML fans have Bruins tickets too.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Not many other things, I have two kids in college. I’m sure it’s more BC and BU I would imagine going to B’s games. Parking is ridiculous around the Garden and NHL tickets (except for playoffs) just aren’t worth what you pay for them. That, and I’m a Pens fan. Grew up in W. Pa.

          • DU_Fan

            At least you have an NHL team worth following. The saving grace for parking here is the Light Rail drops you off within 50 yards of the Pepsi Center. I find it hard to believe you didn’t take your kids to holiday shows when they were growing up, plus other sporting events.

          • Vinnie Vega

            My son was playing hockey and daughter was competitive dancing. They didn’t have time. Or maybe that’s what we told them, as we scraped together cash for hockey gear, dance costumes and all of the travel that went with both.

          • gimruis

            I agree, the NHL has gotten to be ridiculous in price compared to a college game. Plus it often has less offense/goals and teams sometimes just play their systems against each other so it can be pretty un-entertaining.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Yup. College hockey is like watching NHL playoff hockey every weekend. NHL is by and large a snooze fest during the regular season for fully half of the games.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            I can sit at home and swill a ton of beer for about an eighth of the price. Plus college hockey is more fun to go to.

          • DU_Fan

            You there?

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Whats up?

          • DU_Fan

            Got my tickets, DU only sells all-session as they always do. Not bad, $40 a ticket for Row D. We are thinking of leaving tomorrow instead of Friday, damn weather might cost us an extra day at Hyatt. Supposed to be 72 tomorrow, rain/snow mix in evening, Parker (my home) forcasted for 10″ overnight. Typical Colorado weather. Either way, I will get in to Cincinnati in plenty of time to watch UND game Friday.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            March was always a beast when we lived in CO. 40 bucks isn’t bad….shame all the regionals cant be priced like that. I think it was around $100 in Fargo….of course, no one could get them.
            I’ll be working from home Friday…..which means work will cease at 2 pm….

          • DU_Fan

            I am sure your plan will be followed by a ton of UND fans. I’m kind of bummed because if DU was sent to Fargo, I could have gotten you and your wife all-session tickets. Of course, you would have had to sit in DU section and root for them both games. :-)

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            I’d root for DU in the first game…….the second….that would have been a different story, if they would have matched up.
            I guess the only benefit to being at home is being able to watch every game. I’m sure my wife will really enjoy watching Harvard and Prov…..

          • DU_Fan

            Did she graduate from either, or were you being your normal sarcastic self?

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Yeah, sarcasm doesn’t translate well through typing. She doesn’t care for watching two random teams as much as I do.

          • DU_Fan

            Unless you get ESPNews channel, you can only watch DU on ESPN3 online. Talk about being downgraded.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            I cant remember if we get ESPNews or not. With how few hockey games there are in the tourney….you’d think they’d find a way to get them all on decent channels. Unfortunately the NC$$ doesn’t care about hockey that much.

          • DU_Fan

            Absolutely true. Probably pains them that they are televised at all. Without television, they would figure more fans would attend. How stupid would that be?

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            They really don’t understand simple economics. Some regionals have such dismal attendance, but are grossly overpriced. Something tells me that price went down, demand would go up. It’s not guaranteed 100%, but if it were like 20 dollars as opposed to 50 dollars, I’d go. Even if my team wasn’t playing there.

          • Vinnie Vega

            $40 in Manchester and the UML pre-game bar is nearly right across the street.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            The west regionals are always expensive. Its ridiculous. Plus holding it in a 5K seat arena where they know they could sell more than double that is just as ridiculous.

          • Friarsgirl

            I’m a Penguins girl too, not easy when everyone assume that all sports fans in RI automatically support the Boston teams. Even a certain NESN commentator only recalls his beantown career forgetting he was also a Jet, Devil and Pen.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Cool! He knows where his roots are though. He and Sheary are from the same town. Funny you say that, my son wrote to 66 when he was young, saying it was tough being a Pens fan in Bs land, and ML sent him a hand signed 8.5 x11 like a week later. Got a great pic of them together a few years ago at a tourney ML was coaching Austin in. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/6ac6038d2650ef50fffcbcddcdb2d51d5cd4849e3033c45aa632efee1b8cccae.jpg

          • Friarsgirl

            Awesome photo thanks for sharing! I met him once in Hartford in the pre cell phone days so unfortunately no pictures. Class A gentleman then and now. Pens have done well with HE players; even better than one of yours and two of mine won Cups there.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Three River Hawks there now in Wilson, Ruhwedel and now Ron Hainsey.

          • Friarsgirl

            How did I forget Chad when I saw him win with Scott? Guess my brain is too Friared this week. Have fun in Manchester,hope your guys clobber Cornell and Minny.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Scott winning Rookie of the year over Johnny Hockey.

          • Nowheresville

            BTW, if you’re going to note that 2/3rds of the teams are east of the Mississippi, then lets adjust Husky Nation’s proposal. Put the West Regional in Fargo or Denver, the Midwest Regional in St. Paul, and the East Regional in Madison. That way the “east” would still be over-represented by having 3 of 4 Regionals east of the Mississippi.

          • HuskyNation

            Nice

          • Vinnie Vega

            …and you’d still be a biased westerner.

          • Nowheresville

            Fine, you eastern fans need to have everything. We’ll put the West Regional in St. Paul, the Midwest in Duluth, the East in Madison, and the Northeast in Detroit. Now, you’ve got all 4 of the regionals east of the Mississippi. Happy yet?

          • Vinnie Vega

            Nope, of the 60 D1 teams, 37 of em exist east of Ohio. Try again.

          • Nowheresville

            Now look at who is moving the goalposts. You are the one who said east of the Mississippi.

          • Vinnie Vega

            They do, and almost 2/3 exist east of Ohio. Only 23 (of 60) exist west of PA.

          • Nowheresville

            Yeah, but if games are played at schools east of Ohio and no one is there to see them, do they really happen?

          • Vinnie Vega

            Tune in to UML vs Cornell, it will be packed. We sold out our initial allotment of tickets in 5 hours. Had to go back to the NCAA to petiton for more tickets.

          • Nowheresville

            Packed, as in 5000 people “packing” a 10k arena. Yeah, that will be impressive.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Have you always been a dick or is it just talking with eastern hockey fans that makes you this way?

          • Nowheresville

            When it was clear you weren’t getting the joke that St. Paul is east of Mississippi, and thus and Eastern destination under your definition, I decided to keep fing with you.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Oh, I got it just fine, I just didn’t think it was all that clever.

          • Nowheresville

            So what you’re saying is your sense of humor is like crowd of 7,000 people at an eastern college hockey arena – it doesn’t exist?

          • Vinnie Vega
          • gimruis

            This is a good map with great figures, Vega. Wisconsin, Uconn, and Ohio State’s attendance is pathetic. They all play in massive arenas and their avg attendance is less than 60%. Down right embarassing might be a better way to describe it.

          • Nowheresville

            Yep, Wisconsin drew more fans than Lowell and BC combined (and those are the 2 best eastern schools for attendance). Down right embarassing is an understatement!

    • gmz

      Vegas!!!!!!

  • HuskyNation

    Put the West regional in Denver, Midwest in Omaha, East in St Paul or Chicago and the Northeast anywhere else.

    • Vinnie Vega

      So, one west, one almost west, one midwest, and one east. Sorry, doesn’t work for me. 2/3 of the programs are located east of the Mississippi.

      • HuskyNation

        True,but if those teams can’t fill a stadium when its only a 2 hour drive from campus put the regionals in hockey cities that will fill arenas

        • Vinnie Vega

          So, only teams that play in your region can fill arenas? Oh, ok.

          • Nowheresville

            Well when 10 of the top 11 teams in the country in terms of attendance are in the NCHC or B1G….

          • Vinnie Vega

            Top 11?, you had to squeak in another team, eh?

          • Nowheresville

            11 is the cutoff for drawing 5k fans. So of the 11 teams that draw more than 5,000, 9 of the top 10, or make it even easier and say the top 8, period.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Thereby cutting out #9. I see how that works.

          • Nowheresville

            Again, when the best and only thing you’ve got to work with is #9, you’re kind of making the argument for me.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Well, as a UML STH, I couldn’t let it slide. You’re also making the assumption that because regular season attendance #s are good, that the trend would continue for the regionals. Not sure that’s the case except in North Dakota.

          • DU_Fan

            Aren’t you being a slight bit hypocritical? You are the one always pointing out how UML has such a plethora of fans. When someone uses attendance as a meter of judgement, you are quick to point out the quantity of eastern teams or sparsity of western ones. Other than UML, Boston area fans don’t drive more that 30 miles to a regional, to see their teams play.

          • Vinnie Vega

            I’m quick to do it? It’s the only time I’ve ever done it.

          • DU_Fan

            Once again, facts. That excuse was in the very first reply you gave to HuskyNation.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Again facts, if you can find any other day that I’d done it, I’d agree.

          • DU_Fan

            .I will take that challenge when I get some free time to look back. Might take a while with all your posts.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Knock yourself out.

          • Vinnie Vega

            UMV, Maine, UNH all travel well. Where are you getting your facts?

          • DU_Fan

            Guess you didn’t major in Geography. Speaking of facts, are UMV, Maine, and UNH “Boston area” schools? Please read what I stated, don’t try to put words into my post.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Seriously, why do you need to get insulting. I know where the hell these schools are. Every one is within 4 hrs driving from Boston.

          • DU_Fan

            I didn’t know you considered 4 hours as driving distance. I honestly don’t know how many of the fans of the teams you mentioned will travel to TD Gardens for a Regional.

          • Vinnie Vega

            I can’t give you hard #s because I don’t have them and really don’t have the time or motivation to look them up, I just know that those 3 schools a re generally well represented when we play them. You are the one telling me that outside of UML none of the Boston schools travel, I’m asking how do you know that?

          • DU_Fan

            Only speaking from experience traveling to Providence, Albany, and Manchester to watch DU play. I am always surprised at lack of fans when BC and BU were there. At Providence in 2015 there were about 1500 (my estimate only) BC fans, a ton more than PC had. After they lost the first game, they scattered back home, leaving a ghost town for the finals.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Sad, but yes, BU especially and to a lesser degree BC, never show up in #s at our games. Not sure why, but they are right in the city, so there are plenty of other things going on.

          • DU_Fan

            I would hope BU fans would fill their allotment of tickets to go to Fargo. Every fan should be able to get tickets from their college for the Regionals. Most prioritize the same as DU, major donors, season ticket holders by longevity, then public sale. Other then affordability, I feel there is no excuse.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Fargo’s not the easiest place to get to from Boston. I don’t think you’ll see more than 1000 BU fans out there.

          • DU_Fan

            According to the NC$$, that’s no excuse. They state, “you have to fly anyway”. I hope those that do go get extra tickets. They can scalp them outside Scheels Arena and pay for their trip.

          • Friarsgirl

            I rode 2 1/2 days on a bus from Providence to Fargo in 1983 to see the Friars in the then Final Four. So much fun but not sure I’d do it again! In fact the newspaper headline read “you can’t get there from here’ accompanying a diagram.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Wasnt 1983 in Grand Forks?

          • Friarsgirl

            I’ll never get the hang of these typing phones- I inadvertently wrote ‘to’ instead of ‘thru’ ( :

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Eh, either way, that is a loooooooong drive.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Thought about moving to the Boston area at some point for work….which would be nice just for amount of hockey one can watch. I thought it was weird having random tuesday or wednesday games, but that would actually be nice to go see some on those days, and then catch the Sioux on the weekends.

          • Vinnie Vega

            I think I counted 10 rinks within 10 miles of my house. We have two here in town. We’re also right between UML and Merrimack and within a 90 min drive of 13 other D-1 schools, plus who knows how many D-3 schools. It’s a pretty nice place to live for hockey, no doubt. Plus the fishing is excellent and the beach is right here. We’ve got the mountains as well.

            Now for the downside. If you’re used to friendly outgoing mid-westerners, you’re not gonna get that here. It take these folks a while to open up. We’ve lived here in the same neighborhood for 12 years and we still have ‘Hey’ Neighbors, and my wife is from this town. Outside of the immediate family here, our best friends out here are either from W.PA, Ohio, or upstate NY.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            We were out in Boston/Maine when the Sioux played in the ice breaker last year. Loved it. Everyone was trying to warn us about the “massholes” but everyone we talked to was really nice and outgoing.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Lucky you. Did you do much driving?

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Speak of the devil…..to “avoid” traffic, we stayed up in Nashua and then drove down to the Alewife station to take the train into downtown…..cant find enough expletives for that traffic on highway 3. Longest 30 miles of my life…ha ha ha

          • Vinnie Vega

            Well, you hit 3, 128 and 2. Two of the worst commutes out here. LOL

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Yeah, it was brutal. Was a good way for the kids to get a nap in the afternoon, though. Now the drive up to Portland, that was really nice, as was the drive up to Acadia.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Yeah, once you clear Kittery, it’s nice…just loooong. We love Acadia.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            I wish we had an office in Portland, seemed like it would be a nice place to live. Was only there for the couple days of the tourney, but it was fun.

          • Sparky

            I am laughing here a little DU. Only a DU fan would know about these places out east…lol. I cannot recall the last time UND was sent to the east coast for the NT. I’m sorry, but this is just so funny….lol. DU has been shafted beyond belief when it comes to the NT.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            I believe it was Manchester in 2009.

          • DU_Fan

            Sure was..

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            If I’m not mistaken, that was the game where big dumb Joe Finley only had to clear the puck up off the glass to kill the last 10 seconds and he throws it into the stands and the faceoff is in our zone and New Hampshire ties it up and then wins in OT. Damn Finley.

          • Friarsgirl

            I know you were at the Dunk as was I. Many schools unfortunately, including Providence now dole out tourney tix to big donors and alumni shutting out the loyal season ticket holders. I’ve been a season ticket holder for the last 39 years, suffered through the bad years but kept going for love of the team and CH. I’m not the only one who here who was put on a ‘waiting list’ for the last 4 regionals and HE championships and I only got tickets to the FF (to see my Friars win their first title)3 hours before puck drop ( with an hour drive to get there). Attendance for the 2 games PC played at the Dunk was around 14,200 total and allegedly based on that the NCAA is now placing teams closer to home so their fans can attend. A great idea if people weren’t shut out just because they didn’t donate a building.

          • DU_Fan

            The “attendance” figures are tickets sold. There were less than 1200 actual fans in the seats for the finals. I know because I asked one of the ushers, who they did not send home. If you caught the game on TV, you know how empty the Dunk was.

          • Friarsgirl

            TV viewers are shut out this year if they don’t have ESPNU. I don’t and was blocked from watching the selection show on the WATCH ESPN app. Fortunately my friend got our tickets at the box office months ago, we were going no matter which teams got in.

          • DU_Fan

            All games are on ESPN3, on internet. I know it is inconvenient but you can always hook PC to TV and watch your team play. DU-MTU game is relegated to ESPNews, talk about minor station.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            At least there probably wont be a basketball or lacrosse game on prior to your game on ESPNews…..I cant even count the number of times our game has come on late due to something stupid on before it…..

          • Denver_hockey

            Get SLING TV 7 day trial with ESPNU. Cancel after the regional tournament and you won’t be charged and get to watch ALL the games. The ESPN3 games can be watched on the ESPN app without a login.

          • HuskyNation

            My point is that with the population density and the so called huge hockey fans the 2 regionals less than 2 hours apart that they should be sold out.

          • Vinnie Vega

            There are other things to do besides hockey (well, not for me…). Population density brings distractions, cultural diversions, parking that costs an arm and a leg…

          • DU_Fan

            I totally agree with you. I am sure you also do the “other things”. Most metropolitan areas have other entertainment that competes for fans dollars. A lot of hockey fans in Denver have both AVS and DU tickets, I am sure that is the same everywhere. Wonder how many BC, BU, and UML fans have Bruins tickets too.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Not many other things, I have two kids in college. I’m sure it’s more BC and BU I would imagine going to B’s games. Parking is ridiculous around the Garden and NHL tickets (except for playoffs) just aren’t worth what you pay for them. That, and I’m a Pens fan. Grew up in W. Pa.

          • DU_Fan

            At least you have an NHL team worth following. The saving grace for parking here is the Light Rail drops you off within 50 yards of the Pepsi Center. I find it hard to believe you didn’t take your kids to holiday shows when they were growing up, plus other sporting events.

          • Vinnie Vega

            My son was playing hockey and daughter was competitive dancing. They didn’t have time. Or maybe that’s what we told them, as we scraped together cash for hockey gear, dance costumes and all of the travel that went with both.

          • gimruis

            I agree, the NHL has gotten to be ridiculous in price compared to a college game. Plus it often has less offense/goals and teams sometimes just play their systems against each other so it can be pretty un-entertaining.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Yup. College hockey is like watching NHL playoff hockey every weekend. NHL is by and large a snooze fest during the regular season for fully half of the games.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            I can sit at home and swill a ton of beer for about an eighth of the price. Plus college hockey is more fun to go to.

          • DU_Fan

            You there?

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Whats up?

          • DU_Fan

            Got my tickets, DU only sells all-session as they always do. Not bad, $40 a ticket for Row D. We are thinking of leaving tomorrow instead of Friday, damn weather might cost us an extra day at Hyatt. Supposed to be 72 tomorrow, rain/snow mix in evening, Parker (my home) forcasted for 10″ overnight. Typical Colorado weather. Either way, I will get in to Cincinnati in plenty of time to watch UND game Friday.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            March was always a beast when we lived in CO. 40 bucks isn’t bad….shame all the regionals cant be priced like that. I think it was around $100 in Fargo….of course, no one could get them.
            I’ll be working from home Friday…..which means work will cease at 2 pm….

          • DU_Fan

            I am sure your plan will be followed by a ton of UND fans. I’m kind of bummed because if DU was sent to Fargo, I could have gotten you and your wife all-session tickets. Of course, you would have had to sit in DU section and root for them both games. :-)

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            I’d root for DU in the first game…….the second….that would have been a different story, if they would have matched up.
            I guess the only benefit to being at home is being able to watch every game. I’m sure my wife will really enjoy watching Harvard and Prov…..

          • DU_Fan

            Did she graduate from either, or were you being your normal sarcastic self?

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            Yeah, sarcasm doesn’t translate well through typing. She doesn’t care for watching two random teams as much as I do.

          • DU_Fan

            Unless you get ESPNews channel, you can only watch DU on ESPN3 online. Talk about being downgraded.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            I cant remember if we get ESPNews or not. With how few hockey games there are in the tourney….you’d think they’d find a way to get them all on decent channels. Unfortunately the NC$$ doesn’t care about hockey that much.

          • DU_Fan

            Absolutely true. Probably pains them that they are televised at all. Without television, they would figure more fans would attend. How stupid would that be?

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            They really don’t understand simple economics. Some regionals have such dismal attendance, but are grossly overpriced. Something tells me that price went down, demand would go up. It’s not guaranteed 100%, but if it were like 20 dollars as opposed to 50 dollars, I’d go. Even if my team wasn’t playing there.

          • Vinnie Vega

            $40 in Manchester and the UML pre-game bar is nearly right across the street.

          • UofMGoldenChokers

            The west regionals are always expensive. Its ridiculous. Plus holding it in a 5K seat arena where they know they could sell more than double that is just as ridiculous.

          • Friarsgirl

            I’m a Penguins girl too, not easy when everyone assume that all sports fans in RI automatically support the Boston teams. Even a certain NESN commentator only recalls his beantown career forgetting he was also a Jet, Devil and Pen.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Cool! He knows where his roots are though. He and Sheary are from the same town. Funny you say that, my son wrote to 66 when he was young, saying it was tough being a Pens fan in Bs land, and ML sent him a hand signed 8.5 x11 like a week later. Got a great pic of them together a few years ago at a tourney ML was coaching Austin in. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/6ac6038d2650ef50fffcbcddcdb2d51d5cd4849e3033c45aa632efee1b8cccae.jpg

          • Friarsgirl

            Awesome photo thanks for sharing! I met him once in Hartford in the pre cell phone days so unfortunately no pictures. Class A gentleman then and now. Pens have done well with HE players; even better than one of yours and two of mine won Cups there.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Three River Hawks there now in Wilson, Ruhwedel and now Ron Hainsey.

          • Friarsgirl

            How did I forget Chad when I saw him win with Scott? Guess my brain is too Friared this week. Have fun in Manchester,hope your guys clobber Cornell and Minny.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Scott winning Rookie of the year over Johnny Hockey.

          • Nowheresville

            BTW, if you’re going to note that 2/3rds of the teams are east of the Mississippi, then lets adjust Husky Nation’s proposal. Put the West Regional in Fargo or Denver, the Midwest Regional in St. Paul, and the East Regional in Madison. That way the “east” would still be over-represented by having 3 of 4 Regionals east of the Mississippi.

          • HuskyNation

            Nice

          • Vinnie Vega

            …and you’d still be a biased westerner.

          • Nowheresville

            Fine, you eastern fans need to have everything. We’ll put the West Regional in St. Paul, the Midwest in Duluth, the East in Madison, and the Northeast in Detroit. Now, you’ve got all 4 of the regionals east of the Mississippi. Happy yet?

          • Vinnie Vega

            Nope, of the 60 D1 teams, 37 of em exist east of Ohio. Try again.

          • Nowheresville

            Now look at who is moving the goalposts. You are the one who said east of the Mississippi.

          • Vinnie Vega

            They do, and almost 2/3 exist east of Ohio. Only 23 (of 60) exist west of PA.

          • Nowheresville

            Yeah, but if games are played at schools east of Ohio and no one is there to see them, do they really happen?

          • Vinnie Vega

            Tune in to UML vs Cornell, it will be packed. We sold out our initial allotment of tickets in 5 hours. Had to go back to the NCAA to petiton for more tickets.

          • Nowheresville

            Packed, as in 5000 people “packing” a 10k arena. Yeah, that will be impressive.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Have you always been a dick or is it just talking with eastern hockey fans that makes you this way?

          • Nowheresville

            When it was clear you weren’t getting the joke that St. Paul is east of Mississippi, and thus and Eastern destination under your definition, I decided to keep fing with you.

          • Vinnie Vega

            Oh, I got it just fine, I just didn’t think it was all that clever.

          • Nowheresville

            So what you’re saying is your sense of humor is like crowd of 7,000 people at an eastern college hockey arena – it doesn’t exist?

          • Vinnie Vega
          • gimruis

            This is a good map with great figures, Vega. Wisconsin, Uconn, and Ohio State’s attendance is pathetic. They all play in massive arenas and their avg attendance is less than 60%. Down right embarassing might be a better way to describe it.

          • Nowheresville

            Yep, Wisconsin drew more fans than Lowell and BC combined (and those are the 2 best eastern schools for attendance). Down right embarassing is an understatement!

    • gmz

      Vegas!!!!!!

  • Enzo

    I am frustrated that the Bradley Center in Milwaukee is not in the mix for regional sites. I was there for 2 frozen fours and it’s a great venue. Do they just not bid for regionals?

    • Gary Jorgenson

      Consequences of realignment. With the introduction of the Big Ten and the NCHC eating up most the old WCHA, the WCHA taking in the smaller schools in the old CCHA, it will take time to the fans back. The CCHA teams used to play U of M, MSU, Ohio State and Norte Dame which drew large crowds to smaller arena’s. The same goes for the WCHA Minnesota and Wisconsin go to the Big Ten – a six team league and the Western Schools make a new conference NCHC. The excitement has to be there weekly to keep the fan base. It will take years to recover from destroying many rivalries and traditions of these leagues. I love Division 1 College Hockey just don’t know how long loyal fans will put up with how the NCAA Tourney selects regional sites.

      • DU_Fan

        I totally agree with you, regarding rebuilding team’s fan base. I also share your love of CH, has the pros beat hands down, Problem is, the NC$$ can only select regional sites that put in a bid for them. A majority of the larger venues have other commitments that include pro basketball, pro hockey, indoor lacrosse, and concerts. Apparently, there is just not a large quantity to choose from.

        • Gary Jorgenson

          I hope they come up with a solution. As far as relevance of NCAA Division 1 Hockey even ESPN U doesn’t post the College Hockey scores regularly. We are all super fans on this site but I would like to see it expand to a National not regional sport. Adding Arizona State, UAH – south and west teams will help. I am just lucky enough to be have a Suite (skybox) at Michigan Tech and watch Mel Pearson resurrect the Huskies from the dead!

          • DrunkTrainPolka

            .
            in ’99/’00 we were 4-34-0…
            .

          • Gary Jorgenson

            If you are who I think, I was in your Geology Lab class in 89/90! We Tech fans suffered through years of misery. Once Mel was brought in things have turned around. I graduated and stayed in Houghton and am lucky enough to occupy the Top Dogs Suite #2 which we got the suite 5 seasons ago. Love Tech Hockey advertise on the sponsor the PK on the new Scoreboard, the Boards, sponsor all Tech sports and the PK on 93.5 FM and sponsor Coachers Corner weekly on 93.5 FM. Let’s Go Tech!

          • DrunkTrainPolka

            .
            i got to tech in the summer of ’90. graduated in ’93 (ME) and then came back for a masters in ’00 (CE).

            never left again… i work for the CEE department as a research engineer. i live in calumet…

            and since mel pearson has been on board tech hockey has been the apple of my eye. ;)

            thanks for all your support!!

            i am kiko by the way.
            .

          • Gary Jorgenson

            Though you might be Fred Pulka – he was a Geology PhD student that taught my lab classes in 89/90. Sorry for the long winded response. I have had season tickets since 1990 went through 5 or 6 coaches and 1 winning season until MTU hired Mel. DIvision 1 Hockey is the Jewel of Tech. Without Mel I don’t think we would have made it through Realignment.
            Let’s Go Tech!

          • gimruis

            Resurrect from the dead? Holy cow I didn’t realize that a second NCAA berth in 35 years is considered coming back from the dead. Are the zombies coming or what?

          • Gary Jorgenson

            You have no idea. After three decades of losing teams and dwindling attendance and corporate sponsorship, then the Big Ten emerges taking 2 schools and the newly created NCHC takes all but 4 schools. We were very close to losing Division 1 Hockey at Tech. Without Mel Pearson I think it was entirely possible to see our program done. Read History of the WCHA at College Hockey Historical Archives. In 6 years it is a pretty remarkable turnaround!

          • gimruis

            Good to hear.

          • DrunkTrainPolka

            .
            and understand too that these 30-some years (and 20 really BAD ones) were after 10 frozen fours, seven finals, and three national championships…

            and records like; (29-3-0) in 1961-62 and (34-9-0) in 1975-76.

            and as i stated earlier

            in ’99/’00 we were 4-34-0… tim watters’ last season.

            during jamie russell’s last go at it (’10/’11), we went 4-30-4.
            .

          • Gary Jorgenson

            Well said!

    • Nowheresville

      The Bradley Center is being replaced and I don’t think they even have ice in there anymore. The AHL team moved to the old Milwaukee Arena this year – which could actually be a better regional site anyway. There was a Frozen Four bid for Milwaukee last time around that was denied, but I suspect with a new arena opening in 2019 they might get Frozen Four there again relatively soon, and may a regional would go with that.

    • Denver_hockey

      Seems better than Green Bay for sure…

  • Enzo

    I am frustrated that the Bradley Center in Milwaukee is not in the mix for regional sites. I was there for 2 frozen fours and it’s a great venue. Do they just not bid for regionals?

    • Gary Jorgenson

      Consequences of realignment. With the introduction of the Big Ten and the NCHC eating up most the old WCHA, the WCHA taking in the smaller schools in the old CCHA, it will take time to the fans back. The CCHA teams used to play U of M, MSU, Ohio State and Norte Dame which drew large crowds to smaller arena’s. The same goes for the WCHA Minnesota and Wisconsin go to the Big Ten – a six team league and the Western Schools make a new conference NCHC. The excitement has to be there weekly to keep the fan base. It will take years to recover from destroying many rivalries and traditions of these leagues. I love Division 1 College Hockey just don’t know how long loyal fans will put up with how the NCAA Tourney selects regional sites.

      • DU_Fan

        I totally agree with you, regarding rebuilding team’s fan base. I also share your love of CH, has the pros beat hands down, Problem is, the NC$$ can only select regional sites that put in a bid for them. A majority of the larger venues have other commitments that include pro basketball, pro hockey, indoor lacrosse, and concerts. Apparently, there is just not a large quantity to choose from.

        • Gary Jorgenson

          I hope they come up with a solution. As far as relevance of NCAA Division 1 Hockey even ESPN U doesn’t post the College Hockey scores regularly. We are all super fans on this site but I would like to see it expand to a National not regional sport. Adding Arizona State, UAH – south and west teams will help. I am just lucky enough to be have a Suite (skybox) at Michigan Tech and watch Mel Pearson resurrect the Huskies from the dead!

          • DrunkTrainPolka

            .
            in ’99/’00 we were 4-34-0…
            .

          • Gary Jorgenson

            If you are who I think, I was in your Geology Lab class in 89/90! We Tech fans suffered through years of misery. Once Mel was brought in things have turned around. I graduated and stayed in Houghton and am lucky enough to occupy the Top Dogs Suite #2 which we got the suite 5 seasons ago. Love Tech Hockey advertise on the sponsor the PK on the new Scoreboard, the Boards, sponsor all Tech sports and the PK on 93.5 FM and sponsor Coachers Corner weekly on 93.5 FM. Let’s Go Tech!

          • DrunkTrainPolka

            .
            i got to tech in the summer of ’90. graduated in ’93 (ME) and then came back for a masters in ’00 (CE).

            never left again… i work for the CEE department as a research engineer. i live in calumet…

            and since mel pearson has been on board tech hockey has been the apple of my eye. ;)

            thanks for all your support!!

            i am kiko by the way.
            .

          • Gary Jorgenson

            Though you might be Fred Pulka – he was a Geology PhD student that taught my lab classes in 89/90. Sorry for the long winded response. I have had season tickets since 1990 went through 5 or 6 coaches and 1 winning season until MTU hired Mel. DIvision 1 Hockey is the Jewel of Tech. Without Mel I don’t think we would have made it through Realignment.
            Let’s Go Tech!

          • gimruis

            Resurrect from the dead? Holy cow I didn’t realize that a second NCAA berth in 35 years is considered coming back from the dead. Are the zombies coming or what?

          • Gary Jorgenson

            You have no idea. After three decades of losing teams and dwindling attendance and corporate sponsorship, then the Big Ten emerges taking 2 schools and the newly created NCHC takes all but 4 schools. We were very close to losing Division 1 Hockey at Tech. Without Mel Pearson I think it was entirely possible to see our program done. Read History of the WCHA at College Hockey Historical Archives. In 6 years it is a pretty remarkable turnaround!

          • gimruis

            Good to hear.

          • DrunkTrainPolka

            .
            and understand too that these 30-some years (and 20 really BAD ones) were after 10 frozen fours, seven finals, and three national championships…

            and records like; (29-3-0) in 1961-62 and (34-9-0) in 1975-76.

            and as i stated earlier

            in ’99/’00 we were 4-34-0… tim watters’ last season.

            during jamie russell’s last go at it (’10/’11), we went 4-30-4.
            .

          • Gary Jorgenson

            Well said!

    • Nowheresville

      The Bradley Center is being replaced and I don’t think they even have ice in there anymore. The AHL team moved to the old Milwaukee Arena this year – which could actually be a better regional site anyway. There was a Frozen Four bid for Milwaukee last time around that was denied, but I suspect with a new arena opening in 2019 they might get Frozen Four there again relatively soon, and may a regional would go with that.

    • Denver_hockey

      Seems better than Green Bay for sure…

  • DU_Fan

    Paula’s picks for Regional winners, advancing to Frozen Four:

    West Regional – Ohio State

    East Regional – Don’t care, doesn’t matter. Would’ve picked Wisconsin, they should have been an “exemption” qualifier.

    Northeast Regional – Minnesota

    Midwest Regional – Penn State

    • MN_Wild

      To be fair. It’s Penn State her favorite and she has OSU losing to UMD.

      • DU_Fan

        These are her “real” picks. She had to have UMD beat OSU, just for the sake of this column.

    • Sparky

      Yea, Paula is not the most objective writer in CH. We should be grateful Candace covers the NCHC. Candace is brutally honest, the only shaky part of her coverage is the camera work in post-game interviews…:)

      • Vinnie Vega

        …and the post election tweets.

    • At least you’re not bitter…..

    • gimruis

      Shocking that she has 3 big 10 teams in the frozen four. NOT

    • PSUPirate

      Relax … she had PSU as her dark horse. I’m a DU grad that has season tickets for PSU. I have seen PSU play a lot of games. Should they beat Union, certainly not a given, the DU matchup will be interesting. DU is the best team in the country and has few weaknesses. That said, I remember going to Albany several years back and a loaded DU lost to RIT. All it takes is a goalie to stand on his head. People who saw the BIG tournament noticed the PSU goalie has the ability to do that. They can also score goals too.

      • DU_Fan

        Totally correct. One hot goalie,or very iffy ref call, is all it takes in a one-and done. That is why rankings really go out the window.

    • UofMGoldenChokers

      Where do you think Canisius fell in her “poll” this week?

  • DU_Fan

    Paula’s picks for Regional winners, advancing to Frozen Four:

    West Regional – Ohio State

    East Regional – Don’t care, doesn’t matter. Would’ve picked Wisconsin, they should have been an “exemption” qualifier.

    Northeast Regional – Minnesota

    Midwest Regional – Penn State

    • MN_Wild

      To be fair. It’s Penn State her favorite and she has OSU losing to UMD.

      • DU_Fan

        These are her “real” picks. She had to have UMD beat OSU, just for the sake of this column.

    • Sparky

      Yea, Paula is not the most objective writer in CH. We should be grateful Candace covers the NCHC. Candace is brutally honest, the only shaky part of her coverage is the camera work in post-game interviews…:)

      • Vinnie Vega

        …and the post election tweets.

    • At least you’re not bitter…..

    • gimruis

      Shocking that she has 3 big 10 teams in the frozen four. NOT

    • PSUPirate

      Relax … she had PSU as her dark horse. I’m a DU grad that has season tickets for PSU. I have seen PSU play a lot of games. Should they beat Union, certainly not a given, the DU matchup will be interesting. DU is the best team in the country and has few weaknesses. That said, I remember going to Albany several years back and a loaded DU lost to RIT. All it takes is a goalie to stand on his head. People who saw the BIG tournament noticed the PSU goalie has the ability to do that. They can also score goals too.

      • DU_Fan

        Totally correct. One hot goalie,or very iffy ref call, is all it takes in a one-and done. That is why rankings really go out the window.

    • UofMGoldenChokers

      Where do you think Canisius fell in her “poll” this week?

  • TuertoRey

    In what universe were the eastern teams ever considered the finesse teams? The East has always been about along-the-rail, stick-hack hockey, compared with the skill and skating ability of the former WCHA. Don’t know what Paula has been watching.

    • Gary Jorgenson

      Former WCHA? No the NCHC is their own conference. The WCHA is their own conference and the Big 10 is their own conference.

  • TuertoRey

    In what universe were the eastern teams ever considered the finesse teams? The East has always been about along-the-rail, stick-hack hockey, compared with the skill and skating ability of the former WCHA. Don’t know what Paula has been watching.

    • Gary Jorgenson

      Former WCHA? No the NCHC is their own conference. The WCHA is their own conference and the Big 10 is their own conference.

  • River Hawkey

    UMass Lowell vs. Minnesota-Duluth in the championship game. Lowell wins in OT.

    • Vinnie Vega

      For the game we gave away in October.

      • River Hawkey

        The beginning and the end of the season, the two top four teams meet.

      • riverchief

        Sounds good. Actually two ties that Lowell had leads both nights. Plus one that we thought they had won in ot but refs disallowed goal. I thought they matched up well and except for a few miscues, Lowell should’ve won both.

        • Vinnie Vega

          Yeah, I see what you’re saying, but I didn’t feel like we gave away the 1-1 game.

    • Denver_hockey

      You have much more confident than I that Duluth can beat North Dakota in Fargo. North Dakota kicks it up for regionals, especially at their own site. Beating a good team 6 times in one season is near to impossible.

  • River Hawkey

    UMass Lowell vs. Minnesota-Duluth in the championship game. Lowell wins in OT.

    • Vinnie Vega

      For the game we gave away in October.

      • River Hawkey

        The beginning and the end of the season, the two top four teams meet.

      • riverchief

        Sounds good. Actually two ties that Lowell had leads both nights. Plus one that we thought they had won in ot but refs disallowed goal. I thought they matched up well and except for a few miscues, Lowell should’ve won both.

        • Vinnie Vega

          Yeah, I see what you’re saying, but I didn’t feel like we gave away the 1-1 game.

    • Denver_hockey

      You have much more confident than I that Duluth can beat North Dakota in Fargo. North Dakota kicks it up for regionals, especially at their own site. Beating a good team 6 times in one season is near to impossible.

  • Grant Dossetto

    Tech had close to a thousand fans at BGSU during a series in December. Hard to imagine they do worse for the tournament. I could actually see Tech having around 3K down in Cincy Saturday.

    That would get overall attendance to around 5K. It will definitely be better than two thousand.

    • Denver_hockey

      Doubt it. Very short notice and Houghton -> Cinci isn’t exactly an easy trip.

      • Husky1992

        Actually I think Tech will have at least 2,000 – 3,000 fans. We have fan buses that are full driving down.

        • Denver_hockey

          Fair enough, You would know better than I would for sure. Good luck to your team. Cya in Cinci if you plan on going.

      • Roaring Aardvark

        Ummm, they won’t necessarily be coming from Houghton. There’s a pretty good size alumni base in Detroit/southern Michigan. The Sat/Sun format means *they* won’t necessarily have to take Friday off to make the trip.
        My projection of fan base split: MTU 50%, PSU 46%, unattached local fans 2%, Union and DU 1% each.

        • Denver_hockey

          You could very well be right with that prediction. 1% is pretty generous for Denver and Union though! I have to take off Friday and Monday to go from Denver with the game being so early on Saturday and late on Sunday.

          • Roaring Aardvark

            I don’t mean this in a disparaging way, but in the few WCHA Final Fives I attended that Tech made, there always seemed to be very few DU fans. Tech fans *always* outnumbered them heavily. I always chalked it up to a combination of distance, a small school with little-to-no alumni base outside of CO and perhaps boredom that they’d make it every year. I expect those same conditions exist for DU pretty much everywhere they could go this time of year, so at least the team would be used to it…

          • DU_Fan

            I have never gone to Frozen Faceoff, both WCHA and NCHC term for league finals. Usually is anti-climactic, especially since many times 3 of the 4 teams are guaranteed regionals. Better to save money and go to them.

          • Denver_hockey

            DU doesn’t travel unless it’s a frozen four. Every single conference tournament, regional, and frozen fours are all flights for us with exception of a couple. It’s a private, small, super expensive school, and who wants to leave Denver to go to Minneapolis in March? Also, there’s pro teams that they have to compete with for fans. Most of the die-hard hockey fans are Avalanche fans.

        • PSUPirate

          I think PSU’s crowd will surprise you.

          • Roaring Aardvark

            Looking forward to it! The more fans, the more better.

  • Grant Dossetto

    Tech had close to a thousand fans at BGSU during a series in December. Hard to imagine they do worse for the tournament. I could actually see Tech having around 3K down in Cincy Saturday.

    That would get overall attendance to around 5K. It will definitely be better than two thousand.

    • Denver_hockey

      Doubt it. Very short notice and Houghton -> Cinci isn’t exactly an easy trip.

      • Husky1992

        Actually I think Tech will have at least 2,000 – 3,000 fans. We have fan buses that are full driving down.

        • Denver_hockey

          Fair enough, You would know better than I would for sure. Good luck to your team. Cya in Cinci if you plan on going.

      • Roaring Aardvark

        Ummm, they won’t necessarily be coming from Houghton. There’s a pretty good size alumni base in Detroit/southern Michigan. The Sat/Sun format means *they* won’t necessarily have to take Friday off to make the trip.
        My projection of fan base split: MTU 50%, PSU 46%, unattached local fans 2%, Union and DU 1% each.

        • Denver_hockey

          You could very well be right with that prediction. 1% is pretty generous for Denver and Union though! I have to take off Friday and Monday to go from Denver with the game being so early on Saturday and late on Sunday.

          • Roaring Aardvark

            I don’t mean this in a disparaging way, but in the few WCHA Final Fives I attended that Tech made, there always seemed to be very few DU fans. Tech fans *always* outnumbered them heavily. I always chalked it up to a combination of distance, a small school with little-to-no alumni base outside of CO and perhaps boredom that they’d make it every year. I expect those same conditions exist for DU pretty much everywhere they could go this time of year, so at least the team would be used to it…

          • DU_Fan

            I have never gone to Frozen Faceoff, both WCHA and NCHC term for league finals. Usually is anti-climactic, especially since many times 3 of the 4 teams are guaranteed regionals. Better to save money and go to them.

          • Denver_hockey

            DU doesn’t travel unless it’s a frozen four. Every single conference tournament, regional, and frozen fours are all flights for us with exception of a couple. It’s a private, small, super expensive school, and who wants to leave Denver to go to Minneapolis in March? Also, there’s pro teams that they have to compete with for fans. Most of the die-hard hockey fans are Avalanche fans.

        • PSUPirate

          I think PSU’s crowd will surprise you.

          • Roaring Aardvark

            Looking forward to it! The more fans, the more better.

  • Denver_hockey

    At least Cinci is an accessible city with reasonable plane flights from most big cities UNLIKE Fargo, Manchester, and Providence.

    • Husky1992

      As a Tech supporter I would rather have had the West Bracket be played in Denver but I understand that it’s hard to get Pepsi Center. Cincinnati is harder for us to get to then Denver, however I expect about 3,000 Tech fans to show up. I lived Indianapolis 60 miles from Cincinnati and nobody gives a crap about college hockey there it’s all about basketball. After the WCHA holding the playoffs on the top seeded rinks I would be all for the Top Seed hosting the Regional bracket games (or at least hosting I. The nearest larger arena). Keeping excitement the sport and allowing the fans to see the games. By the way I miss the old WCHA MTU fought hard to keep the league doing but as a result we inherited the weaker teams from the CCHA and WCHA. Tech played 44 games adding UND and Notre Dame on to stay competitive. It will be a good game, it will be difficult for Tech to hold your offense in check. On the defense side the #1 and #5 defensies will be on the ice. The two best goalies remaining in the playoffs are facing each other. It should be an interesting game.

      • Denver_hockey

        I do feel for Tech – They did get screwed big time, right as their program was on the rise and could compete in the NCHC without question. The only way Pepsi Center would even CONSIDER hosting a regional is if they got another Frozen Four. The WCHA got it right in terms of their conference tournament with the better seeds hosting. Hope you’ll be coming to Cinci, should be fun.

        • Husky1992

          Can’t make this weekend, own a Tax Prep firm.

  • Denver_hockey

    At least Cinci is an accessible city with reasonable plane flights from most big cities UNLIKE Fargo, Manchester, and Providence.

    • Husky1992

      As a Tech supporter I would rather have had the West Bracket be played in Denver but I understand that it’s hard to get Pepsi Center. Cincinnati is harder for us to get to then Denver, however I expect about 3,000 Tech fans to show up. I lived Indianapolis 60 miles from Cincinnati and nobody gives a crap about college hockey there it’s all about basketball. After the WCHA holding the playoffs on the top seeded rinks I would be all for the Top Seed hosting the Regional bracket games (or at least hosting I. The nearest larger arena). Keeping excitement the sport and allowing the fans to see the games. By the way I miss the old WCHA MTU fought hard to keep the league doing but as a result we inherited the weaker teams from the CCHA and WCHA. Tech played 44 games adding UND and Notre Dame on to stay competitive. It will be a good game, it will be difficult for Tech to hold your offense in check. On the defense side the #1 and #5 defensies will be on the ice. The two best goalies remaining in the playoffs are facing each other. It should be an interesting game.

      • Denver_hockey

        I do feel for Tech – They did get screwed big time, right as their program was on the rise and could compete in the NCHC without question. The only way Pepsi Center would even CONSIDER hosting a regional is if they got another Frozen Four. The WCHA got it right in terms of their conference tournament with the better seeds hosting. Hope you’ll be coming to Cinci, should be fun.

        • Husky1992

          Can’t make this weekend, own a Tax Prep firm.

  • Denver_hockey

    East Vs. West debates – 6 out of 8 NCAA teams with 3 or more national titles are from the “west” while 2 are from the east yet the east has over half of the teams.

    • Husky1992

      Really no should not be a surprise the NCHC is a super league taking the bigger programs from the WCHA and CCHA with he exception of the BIG teams.

    • gmz

      And there’s only a 75% chance of that!

  • Denver_hockey

    East Vs. West debates – 6 out of 8 NCAA teams with 3 or more national titles are from the “west” while 2 are from the east yet the east has over half of the teams.

    • Husky1992

      Really no should not be a surprise the NCHC is a super league taking the bigger programs from the WCHA and CCHA with he exception of the BIG teams.

    • gmz

      And there’s only a 75% chance of that!

  • PSUPirate

    Don’t worry Jim and Paula, a lot of PSU fans/grads are making the trip from State College and everywhere else. Having PSU there will be a bigger benefit then having OSU there because there is more hockey interest at PSU. Whether Cincy was a bad choice won’t be because of PSU. By the way, maybe the BIG should have looked at their numbers in Detroit two years ago and made a change. A lot of money was wasted on a facility and city no one wanted to go to. This obviously was done for nostalgia.

  • PSUPirate

    Don’t worry Jim and Paula, a lot of PSU fans/grads are making the trip from State College and everywhere else. Having PSU there will be a bigger benefit then having OSU there because there is more hockey interest at PSU. Whether Cincy was a bad choice won’t be because of PSU. By the way, maybe the BIG should have looked at their numbers in Detroit two years ago and made a change. A lot of money was wasted on a facility and city no one wanted to go to. This obviously was done for nostalgia.