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College Hockey:
The “character” issue, again

The last time I tried updating this blog when I was sick, I mixed up the names of Minnesota-Duluth’s “FCC” line and North Dakota’s “Pony Express” line, which opened me up to a fair bit of criticism from the North Dakota fans. That misstep notwithstanding, I’m going to try again anyway, and make a final assessment of the “character” issue as it pertains to this year’s Hobey Baker award.

In the past, when I’ve discussed this issue, it’s been mainly to assert that Matt Frattin should not be disqualified from consideration from the award on account of his run-ins with the law that got him kicked off the team. That point stands. If Frattin were truly lacking in character,  he would have signed with the Maple Leafs, started his pro career, and never given North Dakota another thought. The fact that he is still a college hockey player shows character, and he is certainly worthy of being considered.

However, there’s a big difference between the question of whether Frattin’s past misdeeds should disqualify him from consideration and whether a player who hasn’t had disciplinary problems should get a leg up on Frattin when voting for the award.

I think it’s a very good thing that Frattin put in the work to regain his spot with the Fighting Sioux. At a time when college hockey is criticized for its short season (particularly in comparison with major junior), anytime a player chooses to remain in school despite losing his opportunity to play for an extended period due to disciplinary issues, it shows character, particularly when that player is a pro prospect like Frattin. There’s an important lesson in what Frattin did: when you do something wrong, you don’t run away from the consequences. You stick it out, learn your lesson, and try to do better. I would have no problem using Matt Frattin’s actions since being kicked off the team as an example for others to follow.

None of this, however, has a thing to do with Andy Miele or Cam Atkinson, the other two of the three top vote-getters in the Hobey Hat Trick. That’s the problem. It’s all well and good to commend Matt Frattin in general for showing character, but when you’re comparing him to other players, it’s hard to credit him for his decision.

Neither Cam Atkinson or Andy Miele has ever had a disciplinary issue during three or more years of college hockey. If we’re comparing these players to one another in terms of how they fit into the various Hobey criteria, then I have to say that both Atkinson and Miele have a leg up on Frattin in the character department. It’s all well and good to learn from your mistakes, but that doesn’t put you on equal footing with people who never made those mistakes in the first place.

It’s worth taking a moment to remind everyone that the final voting has already taken place, and there will be no vote among the “Hobey Hat Trick” to determine the final winner. The final vote has already happened, and these guys are the top three.

Four years ago, on the eve of the Frozen Four, I was interviewed on Hockey on Campus along with then-ESPNU commentator Bob Norton. This was in the wake of the whole T.J. Hensick controversy, and Bob made an interesting statement: character should be used to build a Hobey candidate up, but not to tear him down. I can see his point, especially when it comes to hearsay and controversy, as in the case of Hensick and his ill-timed penalty in Michigan’s NCAA tournament game with North Dakota (oddly enough, the first NCAA tournament game for Frattin’s teammate, Chay Genoway). However, there’s no hearsay involved here. What happened with Matt Frattin, good and bad, is a matter of record, and it’s a part of his profile as it pertains to the Hobey.

But just a part. We’ll deal with other aspects between now and next Friday.

Updated, 9:54 p.m.: OK, that’s it. No more blogging when sick. Period.

I did, in fact, forget about Cam Atkinson’s arrest in the summer of 2008 with his father and brother for beating up some cyclists in his hometown of Greenwich, Conn. It happened before he was at BC, there hasn’t been any sort of issue with him since that I’m aware of, and let’s face it, this is a two-horse race between Miele and Frattin. Still, I was incorrect at first, and for that, I apologize.

However, as for Miele’s supposed “academic issues,” I do remember with some clarity what happened there. Miele arrived at Miami in time to start the second semester in the 2007-08 season, and after giving some thought to the possibility of starting his college hockey career the following fall, he did begin playing for the RedHawks in the second semester. That’s not the same thing as being suspended for academics like Mike Carman at Minnesota.

Hopefully, that clears things up a bit.

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  • http://twitter.com/fetch9 Fetch

    how convenient of you to forget that Cam Atkinson was arrested and Andy Miele sat out a semester due to academics.

    • Marie T.

      Wait…Andy Miele came to Miami U. in the middle of the year. He never “sat” out a semester. He was in Junior Hockey on track to claim a scoring record and was recruited by Miami. He left Junior Hockey and his claim to a scoring record in that league to play with Miami U. Andy could have waited until the following year to join Miami’s team.

      • Sara

        I think what was meant was that technically he didn’t sit out a semester, but he came in January because he needed that first semester to become cleared by the NCAA to be eligible to play. We had a player in the same situation at UND this year that wasn’t eligible until January. It happens. I don’t think it’s necessarily academic issues, it could be a case of not taking all the required coursework required to be a student athlete in NCAA, so sometimes that needs to get done since not all high schools have the same requirements I’d say.

    • http://ndgoon.blogspot.com/ Goon

      Good call Fetch, beating the crap out a person on a bike is more serious than throwing a lawn mower into the street, also Frattin was acquitted of dui as well.

      • Anonymous

        Yeah! He is a real Character Guy!

        Was the DUI trial, a jury trial in Grand Forks? Acquitted by a jury of Peers? or Fans?

        • FightingSioux4ever

          While Sioux fans are some of the most passionate in all of sport, it isn’t the only thing going in Grand Forks. There are plenty of people there that don’t give a **** about hockey, and to make that staement is just plain ignorant.

          • Anonymous

            I am sorry to label the whole of Grand Forks. However, if you have read some of these posts from NoDak fans, then i am sorry but sometimes you have to speak the same language (ignorance), in order to get a point across.

      • Ryan7smith

        ahhh yeah, being acquitted by a jury of season ticket holders is real special.

    • Anonymous

      No! He did not sit out a semester for academics.

      He joined the team after the 1st semester because another player left the team and scholarship money opened up.

  • Guest

    Lets get serious here, Cam Newton won the Heisman this year while his dad was proven to shop his son to college teams. Although not directly related i think the group of former Heisman winners could have put two and two together and say maybe Cam shoudnt fit the “Heisman” criteria, but we all know what these awards are to celebrate the best PLAYER of their respective sports….everyday a new story comes out about an NCAA athlete or coach being accused of a “character” issue. Lets not get lost in what this award is, for the best NCAA Ice Hockey player

  • hockeyfan2145

    frattin, while 21 got drunk and rowdy, during the offseason. cam atkinson and his brother go and beat up some people. which do you think is worse? and then there is miele, not dedicated enough to put forth the minimal amount of work it would take to be academically eligible. which is more a reflection of character?

    • Marie T.

      Miehle has been “academically” eligible the entire time he’s been at Miami U.

    • livinhockey

      I get drunk and rowdy all the time, I just don’t get caught!

  • Swisschocolatemilk

    Maybe you should discuss the “Character” of all three candidates, rather than just Frattin’s. Articles like this hurt the credibility of uscho. Miele and Atkinkson are only even mentioned in this article, when you say they “have a leg up” on Frattin character wise. This piece does not even touch “the character issue” like the title says. Its just your opinion of Matt Frattin. And isnt this award for “best player in college hockey”?

    • WCHAProud

      I believe Matt Frattin is the best player this year in College Hockey. The Hobey Baker is not given to “the best player”. Character Matters. No one is considering Atkinson as a real candidate. Its Frattin or Miele. Atkinson on AND off ice merits do not add up to “being Hobey”. Miele has not had academic issues. This is a misrepresentation trying to detract attention to Frattin’s character issues. The Sioux are my second favorite team in college hockey. Sioux fans are out of line in these debates. If Miele wins, I sure hope Sioux fans show Character and applaud the decision. My fear is they will not respect the vote and disgrace all Sioux fans. This article points out the only meaningful character debate. The only debate is the best player in college hockey off ice conduct bad enough to give this award to the second best player. We will find out Friday. Perhaps the writer did not state there argument clearly enough. If Frattin was a Saint and put up these numbers there is no debate. Therefore the character issue is Frattin’s issue. His off ice behavior is what is keeping this from being a forgone conclusion.

      • Big Al

        As a Sioux fan. I have to agree. When Duncan won, I was somewhat surprised but I was proud of him and how well his skills fit in to the team that UND had at the time. I think Matt should win this year but if Miele were to win, I would not be surprised at all. Both players are products of the teams they are on – assists and goals are functions of those around you, but clearly these players are both intregal to their teams’ success and are the two most valuable players in the country. If either get the award, there is no way I can second guess either choise and say they shouldn’t have won. Congrats Andy and Matt for being the most valuable players you are.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=501157411 Joey Loeffler Jr

        Sioux fan here, would not have a problem with Miele winning at all. I would have a problem with Atkinson winning (Frattin beats him in skills, numbers, and character IMHO).

        I do have a problem talking about pity pat stuff that happened two years ago during the summer. People are acting like he was a criminal, people are calling him a criminal and saying that he has had countless issues (a disorderly conduct and an acquittal is what he has). He hasn’t done anything worse than 95 percent of the country. I don’t even think they should bring up Atkinsons past which I think is a little more serious of an issue.

        • 18secondsbeforesunrise

          I’ll start by saying that each of these three players are worthy of the Hobey.

          But I do want to challenge your “opinion” that Matt Frattin beats Cam Atkinson in “skills, numbers, and character.” First, how many times have you watched Atkinson play. He has extraordinary hockey skills, as do Frattin and Miele.

          Also, how many times have you watched Miele play?

          Next, lets compare the numbers.
          Frattin has 36g, 24a in 43 games (1.40 PPG), 6GW, 10PP, and 3SH.

          Atkinson has 31g, 21a in 39 games (1.33PPG), 5GW, 8PP, and 4SH. Just to make it interesting, what if Atkinson had played 43 games? If he maintained his average of 1.33PPG, he’d have a total of 57 points (versus Frattin’s 60).

          Miele has 24g, 47a, in 39 games (1.82PPG), 4GW, 6PP, 1SH. What if Miele had played 43 games? If he maintained his average of 1.82PPG, he’d have a total of 80 points (versus Frattin’s 60 and Atkinson’s 57).

          Lastly, the character issue. Naw, I won’t go there. I’m probably in the minority, but I still believe that Cam Newton should not have won the Heisman due to his off the field issues (regardless of the fact that they did not happen during his winning year).

          I do feel that the Hobey Baker criteria explicitly stresses “character” more than any other collegiate award (considering who Hobey Baker was as a person, and his legacy). That said, I don’t believe choosing any of these excellent hockey players would tarnish the award or Baker’s legacy. I want to celebrate college hockey, not tear it or certain players down because my “hobey choice” didn’t win.

          PS) I live in Orono, ME….Gustav Nyquistville….

          • Jason

            and if north dakota ran 3 lines all year instead of 4?

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=501157411 Joey Loeffler Jr

            I was going to try look into TOI but couldn’t find any stats for the candidates so I just ignored the fact that we run 4 all the time. I can’t back it up enough, but were BC and Miami consistently running 3?

          • Jason

            I didn’t take the time to look up the stats. Just trying to make the point that anyone of those guys could play the “What If?” game.

          • Jason

            And for the record, I’m probably one of the few Sioux fans who thinks Miele should probably win the award

          • FightingSioux4ever

            Miele isn’t playing any more, Frattin is. I had Miami winning their bracket, and they get bounced right away. I understand that this was a home game for UNH(the host institution thing is ridiculous), and that Miami easily had the worst draw for a 1 seed. That was a big part of the discussion leading up to the tourney between Frattin and Miele. The guy who had the better run was going to have the edge. Well, here we are, at the FF, and Miami will be watching the game on tv.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=501157411 Joey Loeffler Jr

            Miami had the worst first game draw as a one seed because they were the lowest ranked one seed . . .

          • Anonymous

            That is a terrible argument. So you are saying that you need to make the Frozen Four in order to be considered for the Hobey Baker Award?

            The Frozen four is a team award.

      • Freiday31

        I don’t want to be this guy, but can anyone prove to me that Andy Miele has never gotten drunk at a party? If not, then the only difference between Miele and Frattin is getting caught. Getting caught does not determine character. Character is what you do when nobody else is looking. So unless you are a personal expert on Frattin or Miele, zip the character debate. Assault on the other hand, is a bit more of a character issue. If getting drunk is a character issue, then pretty much every college hockey players has “character issues.”

    • Anonymous

      No! Frattin has had his character questioned by choices he has made. These are not opinions, but facts. He was arrested twice, he was kicked off the team. Miele has not had these questions, because there is no documented reason for questioning him.

      No this is not an award for the best college hockey player. It is a memorial award to the hockey player who exemplifies the character of Hobey Baker. One of which, is being a top talent in College Hockey.

  • Swisschocolatemilk

    The two younger Atkinsons allegedly began kicking and punching the boy who had gotten into the argument with their father, injuring the boy’s forehead. Cam and Tommy Atkinson were also charged with third degree assault. The men were released on promises to appear and are due in court Aug. 27.

    NOW THAT IS CHARACTER
    http://greenwichroundup.blogspot.com/2008/08/082508-belated-raw-greenwich-news-feed.html

  • CollegeHockeyRules

    I am sure all of the players are deserving. Having character and making mistakes are different things. It is not like people of high character never make mistakes. If the reward is based on the type of person the candidates were this year and is not about digging up the dirt of peoples past then none of them have character issues in my opinion. Congrats to all of the Hobey candidates. Being in the top 10 makes you part of very select group – even more so for those in the Hobey Hat Trick. I just hope that, whoever wins, the media has the class to not make it a “controversy” by focusing on the winner’s past mistakes. I hope that instead the focus is on what a great job the winner has done this season.

  • Gfkarff26

    Do you think that if a player was not worthy of the Hobey, the voters would not have voted for that player. The player has already been selected. So no matter what is said for here on out really does not matter.

  • siouxfan4life

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but I feel like I remember reading that Miele was arrested at one point for something during a traffic stop. I’m trying to find where I read that right now, but I don’t feel like I’m making it up…

    • Big Al

      You probably should do the research B4 you post something like this. In the words of Bill Crosby, “No Class”!

    • Anonymous

      Good Deflect!

      it is too bad there is no vaccine for ignorance.

  • HobeyBaker1918

    Siouxfan4life how about backing that up before throwing it out? I think that given the incredible effort by the Miami team to call for respect for all people in the wake of the tragedy there, Miele has quite a “leg up” on the others. I think you have there the aspect of character building up a candidate. I think that given that Miele is a fantastic player with great credentials plus the post-tragedy behaviors, that we have an ideal candidate and a young man of whom to be proud. Overcoming your bad deeds to stay in school does not make you a great person. It means you’ve attempted to redeem yourself. By the standards of the ND fans, Michael Vick is now a great person

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=501157411 Joey Loeffler Jr

      If you’re issue with this post was it being viewed as insensitive towards Burke’s death or the awareness that he raised and the strides he made to get a real world issue in the forefront I will willingly remove it. That was not my intention and I’m sorry it was taken that way.

      Aside from that issue, I’ve repeatedly dismissed statistics and have repeatedly said (on here and other boards http://www.uscho.com/hobeywatch/2011/03/30/should-have-seen-it-coming/) that I think Miele has the best shot at the award. I think he wins completely on his own merit though.

      • UNDclass

        As you’re ignorant, just look up the story of Brendan Burke and the tragedy that befell the Miami hockey team and how the players responded. You could have gone on google before being a loudmouth, but I guess we just learned you’re only capable of looking up stats and posting manifestos and don’t bother learning anything outside North Dakota. Classless. Just simply classless. This is typical.

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=501157411 Joey Loeffler Jr

          As for the issues raised and the courage to do so, Burke deserves the honor . . . I think

      • HockeyFan

        woah…. I’m a Miami fan and I know many a good Sioux fans. You should probably stop talking. As a matter of fact, take off your picture and don’t post again. It’s people like you who give them the bad rep. And they don’t deserve it…

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=501157411 Joey Loeffler Jr

          @UNDclass and @HockeyFan

          Can you not read?

          1. I asked what year it happened and just stated that tragedies happen everywhere (even in ND), so how that helps you win an award I don’t know.

          2. If you are going to quote “respect for all people” maybe you should stop chanting asshole 4 times a game and mocking people during starting line-ups. I didn’t accuse Miami of doing it, I asked if they still did. I even said that if they did, that I didn’t care.

          3. HobeyBaker1918 claimed that all ND fans think that Michael Vick is a great person and thats what I took offense to. Which I reiterated later and said that he “had some good points and that’s why I think he’s better than the couple sentences that were borderline stereotyping or trolling (Vick comments)

          4. I quoted “I don’t even care about the numbers, if you have to look at a scoresheet to tell who is better than the difference is negligible. I’ve seen miele play alot, I live in Ohio. Im personally vested in cam because I have a cbj psl. Watching them play I think frattin is better. Who do i think deserves the hobey? I can’t answer that because im bias. Who do i think will win, miele. Is miele deserving, absolutely. Atkinson . . .he can settle on having the best career and being the best over the last few years but i think he’s beat out this year specifically”

          5. On another boards I have stated that even if you throw out the Disorderly Conduct, Miele still has Frattin beat off the ice IMO (charity/academics). I have stated that Miele is deserving of the award. I have stated that Atkinson has had the best career. How any of these comments are classless or ignorant I do not know. I’m sorry I didn’t say, look at the whole Burke story, someone give these guys an award. I am not patronizing. Kind of like I didn’t say, Frattin overcame so many personal demons, give him an award.

    • FightingSioux4ever

      Terrible analogy. Vick killed dogs. Grow up.

  • Seriously?

    Whoa. why the Carman dig? How was he relevant to this story…?? You have no class writer guy.

    • Elliot Olshansky

      It’s not a dig, just an example. I have a ton of respect for Mike Carman, and have mentioned him recently in comparison to Frattin: another guy who did the right thing and dealt with his mistakes by working hard to regain his eligibility, rather than run off to someplace where he could have simply focused on hockey (in his case, major junior with Kelowna). Perhaps because I’ve mentioned that, he was the first player who came to mind when I was thinking of someone who “sat out a semester due to academics,” because he didn’t make grades, as opposed to Miele, who delayed the start of his career to get his eligibility sorted out coming out of high school.

      This is a feature I wrote about Carman when he made his return for the Gophers. I think you’ll agree that I treated him with respect:

      http://www.cstv.com/sports/m-hockey/stories/011008aad.html

  • http://twitter.com/joeyjr Joey Loeffler, Jr.

    sorry uscho didn’t know you were that mindful of language. And I do want to stress I i hobey1918 had some good points and that’s why I think he’s better than the couple sentences that were borderline stereotyping or trolling. 18Seconds im not sure what you were arguing with me about. You proved frattin had better numbers than cam. I don’t even care about the numbers, if you have to look at a scoresheet to tell who is better than the difference is negligible. I’ve seen miele play alot, I live in Ohio. Im personally vested in cam because I have a cbj psl. Watching them play I think frattin is better. Who do i think deserves the hobey? I can’t answer that because im bias. Who do i think will win, miele. Is miele deserving, absolutely. Atkinson . . .he can settle on having the best career and being the best over the last few years but i think he’s beat out this year specifically

    • 18secondsbeforesunrise

      I was trying to point out that IMHO, Frattin and Atkinson have very similar numbers, especially if you look at PPG. If you don’t think so (1.40 vs. 1.33), then what would you say about Miele’s 1.82 PPG?

      That said, the Hobey doesn’t always go to the player with the most points or most goals. Frattin might still deserve the award, but here are the criteria as listed on hobeybaker.com:

      Hobey Baker Award Criteria

      1. Candidates must exhibit strength of character both on and off the ice.

      2. Candidates must contribute to the integrity of the team and display outstanding skills in all phases of the game.

      3. Consideration should be given to scholastic achievement and sportmanship.

      4. Candidates must comply with all NCAA rules: be full time students in an accredited NCAA college or university; and complete 50% or more of the season.

      Again, I believe that all three are “worthy”.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=501157411 Joey Loeffler Jr

        Thanks for clarifying that, but I think I’m mostly on your side.

        I stated that I think Miele will win and that he deserves it. “Who do i think will win, miele. Is miele deserving, absolutely.”

        Side note, lame that Miele is ineligible for playoffs with Phoenix . . .

        As for Atkinson, I did say that he wasn’t deserving but didn’t mean to sound that negative. He’s worthy, I just think this year it has to come down to Miele and Frattin . . . but I do think Cam has had the best career and I’ll be cheering for him next year in Columbus (in person!)

        • 18secondsbeforesunrise

          I was surprised to learn (from your post) that Miele is ineligible for the playoffs. Thanks for the info.

          Do you know why that is? Do teams have to submit their rosters early or do players have to play a certain amount of games with the playoff team in question? Excuse my lack of knowledge on this.

          Have fun watching Atkinson at the rink….as we say up here in Maine, he’s wicked fast. He burned the UMaine hockey team a few too many times over that past 3 years. :)

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=501157411 Joey Loeffler Jr

            There is a rule going the other way . . . A player on an NHL roster at the deadline cannot play in the AHL playoffs (makes sense so you don’t load up your AHL roster at playoff time).

            I’m not sure how the rule (in Miele’s case) is written but they have to be signed before the trade deadline. Doesn’t make sense to me though.

  • Sioux guy

    All 3 players are worthy, which is more than can be said for Elliot writing decent articles.. Seriously with this “sick” excuse as to why you’ve missed key facts in your articles? I’m not buying your “sick” excuse, its lack of research/knowledge on the subject you’re writing on. Please stop writing bad articles that you need to revise after people call you out on your mistakes and then using the “sick” excuse. Hate to use this but take a page out of Matt Frattin’s book and own up to mistakes YOU made!!!

  • JustAFan

    Look Frattin made mistakes and he is living up to his mistakes, how many people can say that? I would really like to know how squeaky clean the other candidates really are. I would like to know of any incidents “swept” under the rug, it happens in every sports, at every level, and at every college. Besides the Hobey Baker is not given to the best player for his past years, it is given to the best character/player for that year and Frattin has done just that. I’m not saying I am a big Frattin fan, I commend him for what he has did this “YEAR” and hope him the best, but what I am saying is that every ones character gets put into judgment every once an while and he by far as stood up to the challenge.

  • Karl Largen

    Character apparently means nothing for the Hobey. If it did Jack Connolly would be in the Hat Trick. The kid is just a really good person. Before the second game in the first round of the WCHA playoffs, Jack was visiting a kid in the hospital. Yesterday he was at an event to help funding for heart disease. Come to think of it I don’t remember the last weekend when UMD was at home that Jack wasn’t doing something out in the community. If Hobey claims to value character they should stick to it and commend guys like Connolly for their unfaltering good character.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=501157411 Joey Loeffler Jr

      I thought Connolly had a great shot at it before they announced the final three.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_3TMXAABFN53GMJ2UBJMBE4P7UI Cody

    I think it is irresponsible for you to bring up past transgressions. We have all done things in the past which we are not proud of and just because a person is a Hobey Baker finalist does not mean that their entire college (and even pre college) track record should be broadcast across this web site.

  • mike

    Andy Miele has had an amazing season and he has put up the best stats of anyone in college hockey in years. That right there should get him the Hobey Baker. To say he should get discredited for having good players on his line shouldn’t be an issue.

    In 2007 Ryan Duncan won the award and it was pretty clear that he was the third best player on his line. But he had the best stats on his line.

  • ND

    “It’s all well and good to learn from your mistakes, but that doesn’t put you on equal footing with people who never made those mistakes in the first place.”

    - Well I’m glad I don’t know you

  • Gordwiser

    This is the Hobey Baker Award for the 2010/11 season and not the 2007-2011 seasons, correct?

    Anyone who has watched Frattin all year saw his importance on the ice against the best teams even if his scoring against the best teams wasn’t as high as Miele’s.

    How is Miele as a two-way player? Was he the best player on his own team? That seems up to debate.

    I think looking at the character issue as applied to THIS season, there is no way Frattin can be knocked down a rung.

    Frattin or Miele… both deserving.

    • Anonymous

      Miele is on the top set of PK forwards for Miami.

      Whose Penalty Killing % was second in the nation at 88.3% (181-205).

      That says something about his two-way play.

      Was Frattin the best player on his team? I can debate that as well. Some might say Dell was the best player this year for NoDak.

      What I can tell you is that against Top Competition, Frattin was not the best player in the the Hobey Hat trick, and maybe not the Top player on his team against Top Competition.

  • http://twitter.com/SullivanHockey Brian Sullivan

     That’s a very good point: I neglected to appreciate that there are more points available per game in the CCHA due to shootouts. That said, I wonder if such adjustments would be necessary, as more points on the table doesn’t necessarily warp the ratios between the good and bad teams…?

  • Kpc

    Yes, but the standard deviation is NOT a ratio.  It represents the width of the distribution of, in this case, the number of points that each team has gotten so far in the season.  When you calculate a standard deviation of a set of numbers you’re assuming that the numbers are distributed around a mean value with a normal or Gaussian distribution.  That’s where the 68% number comes from.  Rescale the CCHA points by 2/3 (as if each game counted for 2 points) and the standard deviation becomes 4.8.  

    (Remember that the CCHA is not like the NHL – you don’t just get an extra point for winning a shootout.  It’s a 3/2/1 scale for Win/Shootout Win/Shootout Loss, so the direct 2/3 scaling is appropriate.)

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