Monday Wrap-Up 11/13

Thoughts on the week that was:

NCHA Logo

  • More domination for the NCHA. The league went 13-3 against the neighboring MIAC to improve to 25-6-1 so far this season in interconference play. MIAC teams dropped in the poll as a result, while upstarts like UW-Stout are ranked on the basis of their success the past two weekends.
  • Manhattanville is for real. The Valiants beat Curry 9-2 and Wentworth 6-2 to remain unbeaten on the season. They’re the Oakland Raiders of Division III – rivals with many teams and often the team fans love to hate. And like the football Raiders, the Valiants feature players that transfer in from other schools, mostly D-I programs. Manhattanville picked up several players when Iona droped hockey a couple of years ago, and currently feature transfers from Quinnipiac, Bemidji and Canisius. Whatever formula coach and Athletic Director Keith Leventhal is using, it’s working well. One other Raiders comparison since I’m on a roll – teams hate playing at the Playland Ice Casino, a quirky rink, where, according to the Valiants, “The house always wins.” Not always, but Manhattanville is 30-3-2 at home in the regular season over the past four years.
  • Speaking of home ice advantage, does Fredonia have two sets of Blue Devils? The ones that play at Steele Hall have lost once in their past 26 games at home, dating back to the 2003-2004 season. The other set of Blue Devils are the ones that travel, apparently. Fredonia is 10-15-4 on the road over the same timeframe, and was shutout 8-0 and 3-0 at Oswego and Cortland this past weekend.

17 COMMENTS

  1. I agree with Coach Wilson that “It can’t be a one-way commitment.” But these days, college hockey teams aren’t just competing against other U.S. colleges for recruits, they’re competing against major juniors, who don’t even honor letters of intent, let alone any “gentleman’s agreement.” Some schools have lost recruits who had already enrolled in school to juniors. This is a huge problem for those schools, even with the recent NCAA rule change to allow schools to talk to recruits earlier. So the players have to honor their commitments too.

    Coach Serratore’s comments about schools “who said they needed to commit players before they got to major junior” seems to acknowledge this a bit. Although he seems rather dismissive of the problem, especially when he says, “It wasn’t the non-BCS schools that were committing 14- and 15-year-olds.” Maybe that used to be true, but the article starts out talking about a 13-year-old giving a verbal commitment to Maine. So it’s not just BCS schools like Minnesota who are doing it now. While I understand the challenges that smaller schools have in recruiting against bigger schools with big-time college football and basketball programs, the larger problem for all of U.S. college hockey is juniors.

    • Maybe Coach Serratore’s should look at the number of recruits he has committed, there is no way all those player’s are going on to play college hockey. The problem is lot of these players believe they have committed but in the end they use up there last year of juniors than the University tells them they have zero slots for them.

  2. I agree with Coach Wilson that “It can’t be a one-way commitment.” But these days, college hockey teams aren’t just competing against other U.S. colleges for recruits, they’re competing against major juniors, who don’t even honor letters of intent, let alone any “gentleman’s agreement.” Some schools have lost recruits who had already enrolled in school to juniors. This is a huge problem for those schools, even with the recent NCAA rule change to allow schools to talk to recruits earlier. So the players have to honor their commitments too.

    Coach Serratore’s comments about schools “who said they needed to commit players before they got to major junior” seems to acknowledge this a bit. Although he seems rather dismissive of the problem, especially when he says, “It wasn’t the non-BCS schools that were committing 14- and 15-year-olds.” Maybe that used to be true, but the article starts out talking about a 13-year-old giving a verbal commitment to Maine. So it’s not just BCS schools like Minnesota who are doing it now. While I understand the challenges that smaller schools have in recruiting against bigger schools with big-time college football and basketball programs, the larger problem for all of U.S. college hockey is juniors.

    • Maybe Coach Serratore’s should look at the number of recruits he has committed, there is no way all those player’s are going on to play college hockey. The problem is lot of these players believe they have committed but in the end they use up there last year of juniors than the University tells them they have zero slots for them.

  3. It’s hard not to be completely cynical when reading this, considering that the college hockey factories pioneered the art of the sophomore, then freshman, commitment. I know the blog isn’t about Wahlstrom, per se. That was just an anecdote to sell the story. But it reads an awful lot like:

    1. “You have to understand – we need to recruit young to be competitive.”
    2. (smaller school gets a commitment from a kid *before* he gets to Shattuck)
    3. “Oh, no! Won’t anyone think of the children?!?!”

    I guess it’s good enough that coaches at major programs are starting to come around. But they’re so culpable in this practice that it might be a good idea to drop the moralizing.

  4. It’s hard not to be completely cynical when reading this, considering that the college hockey factories pioneered the art of the sophomore, then freshman, commitment. I know the blog isn’t about Wahlstrom, per se. That was just an anecdote to sell the story. But it reads an awful lot like:

    1. “You have to understand – we need to recruit young to be competitive.”
    2. (smaller school gets a commitment from a kid *before* he gets to Shattuck)
    3. “Oh, no! Won’t anyone think of the children?!?!”

    I guess it’s good enough that coaches at major programs are starting to come around. But they’re so culpable in this practice that it might be a good idea to drop the moralizing.

  5. I feel like this article only tells half the story. The trend in this direction is due to talented players being taken by the OHL and other Canadian leagues that impair kids ability to play in the NCAA. Perhaps that changes soon but in the meantime I’d rather see a kid getting an education than wind up bumming around western Canada. Also, if a kid knows he’s not going to get any ice time he’ll likely decommit and go elsewhere.

  6. I feel like this article only tells half the story. The trend in this direction is due to talented players being taken by the OHL and other Canadian leagues that impair kids ability to play in the NCAA. Perhaps that changes soon but in the meantime I’d rather see a kid getting an education than wind up bumming around western Canada. Also, if a kid knows he’s not going to get any ice time he’ll likely decommit and go elsewhere.

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