My head is still spinning from the two days in Grand Rapids that changed the history of college hockey. A hearty congratulations to the Bemidji State Beavers, who earned every bit of their trip to the Frozen Four. What a great thing for that program, the incredible people associated with it and for college hockey. What an exciting thing to have witnessed.
And to those complaining about how this affects television ratings, go suck a lemon. Yes, bigger names like Notre Dame and Denver bring in more viewers, which allegedly helps us keep this sport afloat. But after this weekend, I’m just not buying it. I don’t think that spotty NCAA regional coverage – so much depending on local cable providers and the whims of people who don’t give a fig about college hockey – does anything for the sport we love, and an eclectic Frozen Four field may have less of a ratings impact than, say, general apathy towards college hockey.
As a fan of the CCHA, I was disappointed in the performance of two of the conference’s four teams. Both Michigan and Notre Dame played flat, emotionless, tentative hockey. Neither team seemed to show up for its game. That, my friends, is the essence of disappointment.
Of course, I’m thrilled that the Miami RedHawks are making their first trip to the Frozen Four – thrilled that the CCHA has any representation in D.C. at all. And it’s good for the league to send its fourth different team in three years to the FF.
And how about those Buckeyes? Sure, they lost to Boston University 8-3, but they never gave up and they scored two more goals in that game than the Wolverines and Fighting Irish did in their single appearances, combined. What a great experience for a team with three seniors and a junior on its roster.
There is so much good stuff to share from the Midwest Regional that I just couldn’t write up because of the Saturday-Sunday schedule, but I will get to it all this week. Stay tuned.