ECAC Hockey picks: Jan. 23-27

Season record: 39-26-4. I can live with that. Relatively light schedule this week: Princeton doesn’t play until Tuesday, Quinnipiac has the week off, and RPI and Union only play once… against each other.

As always, all games begin at 7pm EST unless otherwise noted.

Friday, Jan. 23

Brown at Clarkson
Brown has only beaten one good team all year (Providence, to claim the Mayor’s Cup). Clarkson is 3-6 since Thanksgiving, but is still significantly better than Brown… at least, what we’ve seen of Brown so far. Knights take it.

Dartmouth at Colgate
Dartmouth hasn’t won since the holiday break (0-4-2), whereas Colgate is 5-1 in its last six. The Raiders finally seem to be pulling it together to the degree that so many of us expected in September. Raiders romp.

Harvard at Cornell
The biggest night of the year in Ithaca is even bigger this year, as Harvard is wearing a sizable target. The Crimson are 7-0-1 away from home this season (only 4-2-1 at home, surprisingly), so don’t expect the circus atmosphere to pose too great a distraction. Cornell is having a pretty mediocre season as a whole, with a lot of ups and downs, most recently a 3-0 downer at RPI last Saturday. The Big Red will need to play as well defensively as they have all year to pull this one out, but – so help me – I think they can do it Friday. Cornell in an upset.

Yale at St. Lawrence
This may be the best game no one is going to pay attention to this week. Yale and SLU are each heating up, albeit to differing degrees: The Bulldogs are on a 5-1 run, while the Saints are 3-1 in their last four with wins at Harvard and Dartmouth last weekend. Should be a doozy, as they say; I like Yale for the W.

Saturday, Jan. 24

Yale at Clarkson
Is Yale as good as we have been speculating them to be? This weekend may speak volumes as to the Bulldogs’ veracity as a late-season contender. Yale FTW.

Harvard at Colgate
A lot of variables here, generally affecting Harvard more than Colgate: The Crimson will be coming off an emotionally exhausting night in Ithaca, and Colgate will either pose a serious threat to a worn-out victor or will serve as default whipping-boy should Harvard fall to their bitterest rivals. Given my Friday prediction, I’ll take Harvard on Saturday.

Dartmouth at Cornell
On a hunch, I believe Dartmouth will bounce back with a win over the inconsistent Big Red. After Friday night’s festivities, hunches are as good a lead as anything else. Dartmouth wins.

Brown at St. Lawrence
Until the Bears can prove themselves able to off a mid-caliber foe, I’ll see no reason to pick them in such circumstances. SLU wins.

Rensselaer vs. Union Mayor’s Cup – Times-Union Center, Albany; 7:30
Hooboy, another one of these, eh? RPI and Union haven’t met since Halloween weekend, when the Engineers shocked us all with a twin-killing. Since that time, RPI has gone 6-11-1; Union, 6-7-2. The Dutchmen enter the game on a three-game skid, while the Engineers have won three straight for the first time since October 2012. Maybe this is the pendulum swinging back toward Troy, if ever so slightly? Engineers win.

Tuesday, Jan. 27

Army at Princeton
Army is 5-16-2… which is still better than Princeton’s 2-14-1. Princeton is Brown Rule’d. Army wins… because, like, somebody has to, right?