This week, we welcome yet another victim to the slaughter: Mr. Benjamin Davis. A former equipment manager at Clarkson (class of ’03), Davis feels he has the hockey savvy to take down your loyal puck pundit.
We’ll see about that.
Last week: 8-1-0 (.889)
Season record: Me: 61-29-11 (.658)
Guest guessers: 38-31-6 (.547)
Head to head: Sullivan 5, Guests 2*
Keep the challenges coming; who’s next? ECACWriter@USCHO.com for the chance to submit your own picks.
All times Eastern
Saturday, December 18
Vermont at St. Lawrence – 7:00
Vermont hasn’t been having a strong year, or really a strong couple of years since they made the Frozen Four in ’09. At 2-8-4 overall, the Catamounts are the second-lowest-scoring team in the country (beating Harvard by a significant margin nonetheless) with 2.07 goals per game. Their defense is in the bottom 10 nationally as well (3.43 goals against/game), they’re falling short of 15 percent on the power play and well short of 80 percent on the ‘kill. All that said, SLU resides in the bottom half of all of the same national categories except on the PK (85.7 percent, tied for 12th), and the Saints’ 3-8-3 record isn’t exactly putting Vermont’s results to shame. UVM just won a thriller at Dartmouth, so they might be riding a lap-pool wave, but I’ll give the edge to the team that has been a little bit better (and is playing at home, of course): 3-2 SLU.
BD: Both teams are struggling the first half of the 2010-11 season. Vermont did come off a huge road win at Dartmouth but St. Lawrence is always tough at home. I don’t really want to choose it this way but St. Lawrence in a close one 3-2.
Colgate at Robert Morris – 7:05
Colgate beat Army, but The Brown Rule hangs above them like the Sword of Damocles. This is not your run-of-the-mill ECAC-AHA matchup, either: Colgate is obviously struggling, but Bobby Mo’ is leading the Atlantic in league points as well as overall record (10-4-2). The way this season is going – for each side – I’m picking RMU, 4-2.
BD: Colgate only being winners of 1 in their last 9 are up against a tough Robert Morris squad. If the Raiders want any chance in winning they need to keep the Colonials under control in the 3rd period where the Colonials are outscoring their opponents by 13 (and the Raiders are a -6). Robert Morris in this weekend’s opener 6-2.
Union at Western Michigan – 7:30
WMU is having a pretty average season in almost every sense: they’re mediocre in every statistical category, including record. Union is clearly having an exceptional season, though there’s always more to be done. The one thing that gives me pause is that this is a home game for the Broncos, who are 5-3-1 in Kalamazoo, while the Dutchmen are a mere 2-3-1 on the road. I’m going to give Union (and it’s drool-inducing power play) a shot in this one: 4-2 in Game 1.
BD: A 720 mile bus trip will take a toll on any team no matter how good they are. Union can only hope for some penalties against Western Michigan to put the nations best power play on the ice. I still have to go against Union. Western Michigan in the opener 4-2.
Sunday, December 19
U.S. National Junior Team at Rensselaer – 4:00
Union at Western Michigan – 4:00
Round 2: Do I pick a split? If so, did I pick it the right way? I am going to put my faith in Union to do right by the ECAC and prove some of the haters wrong. (Not that they’ll admit it, of course.) 5-3 Dutch in the matinee.
BD: Union gets its legs back in this one and will not get swept on the weekend. Union 4-1 winners.
Colgate at Robert Morris – 4:05
Now that I think about it, I don’t have any hard-and-fast rules about how a team gets out from under The Brown Rule… all I’ve ever said is that they have to prove that they can win with some consistency. The Raiders have certainly not achieved that yet (though Bourdon, Day, Smith and Larkin are giving it their best shots). 3-1 Colonials.
BD: This game is a little closer then Friday nights blowout but the Raiders are swept again on the weekend. Colonials 3-1
If you like the Ottawa Senators… and/or hate NESN’s Jack Edwards… we should talk. Find me on Twitter at SullivanHockey.