Notre Dame, Big Ten make it official, announce ‘compelling’ move to Big Ten for ’17-18 season

Notre Dame has played three seasons in Hockey East, but after the 2016-17 season, will join the Big Ten (photo: Melissa Wade).

In breaking news reported Tuesday, Notre Dame officially announced Wednesday that its hockey program will join the Big Ten in 2017-18.

Notre Dame has been a member of Hockey East since the 2013-14 season and will continue to compete in that league for the 2016-17 season.

“While we have enjoyed our affiliation with Hockey East, the opportunity to participate in Big Ten hockey is a compelling one from the perspective of our student-athletes,” Notre Dame vice president and director of athletics Jack Swarbrick said in a statement. “The move will significantly reduce the time our team spends traveling, increase the broadcast exposure for our program and allow us to take advantage of the natural rivalries that exist with the Big Ten schools that participate in hockey.”

Hockey East also released a statement on the impending move.

“Hockey East has been a dominant player in college hockey since its inception in 1984,” Hockey East commissioner Joe Bertagna said in the league’s statement. “The addition of both Notre Dame and the University of Connecticut enhanced the strength and depth of the league. This weekend, Notre Dame is part of Hockey East’s six-team contingent that is looking to defend the national championship won by Providence College last April in Boston. The college hockey landscape continues to change, but one certainty is that Hockey East will remain the premier conference in college hockey for years to come.”

Notre Dame will join Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Ohio State, Penn State and Wisconsin to form a seven-team hockey conference.

“Notre Dame hockey has a long history of competing with Big Ten programs and we’re pleased to renew those rivalries as part of conference hockey competition,” said Big Ten deputy commissioner Brad Traviolia in a news release. “The Big Ten continues to grow the sport of hockey in our conference and the addition of Notre Dame as a sport affiliate assists in that goal.”

Prior to joining Hockey East, Notre Dame played two stints in the CCHA (1981 to 1983 and 1992 to 2013), winning both CCHA regular-season and postseason tournament titles in 2007 and 2009 and competed against Michigan, Michigan State and Ohio State. The Irish claimed the final CCHA playoff championship in 2013.

From 1971 to 1981, Notre Dame competed alongside Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota and Wisconsin in the WCHA.

Notre Dame played two-game regular-season series against Minnesota and Penn State in 2015-16 and will renew its rivalry with Michigan on Friday at the U.S. Bank Arena in Cincinnati in the first round of the NCAA tournament.


    • Hopefully not ASU, that would be a mistake. No offense to ASU. If the big10 wants to be more competitive they need to go after another established school.

      • Do they need to be “competitive” or should they “grow the game?” I would think this would help College Hockey if they get ASU and get some other B1G schools to start hockey…

        • Growing the sport would not help, as of now attendance is down all across the league. And frankly there is not enough talent out there to grow the sport.

        • The Schools in the Big 10 that could possibly add Hockey are Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois, Northwestern and Rutgers. ASU is actually outgrowing their hometown of Tempe and is not only spreading into Phoenix but Mesa as well. They also need a new hockey arena as well as basketball. I could see Wells Fargo Arena ( where they play hoops) torn down and converted I to a 5,0000 seat hockey arena, and build a basketball Arena on Campus or in the Sports District in Phoenix. That said I cannot see ASU letting go of the Arizona Wildcats and the Pac 12 for the Big 10. Keep in mind that both Johns Hopkins and Notre Dame are in the Big 10 footprint ASU would not be. My prediction is NO ASU in the Big 10 and the next Big 10 School to add Hockey will be Nebraska.

          • I agree with respect to ASU. I had heard Nebraska would add hockey just to spite Nebraska-Omaha. There is already a 5,000 seat arena in Lincoln that the junior team uses.

          • Nebraska makes some sense but I doubt Nebraska would like to be the second best hockey program in Nebraska. It’s the same reason NDSU refuses to start hockey.

      • ASU will likely be added in April. After that, you can expect two more traditional programs. Just relaying what I am hearing.

        • Well other sources saying other things, will it happen? Maybe, but I do not think it would be a good thing for the big 10. Maybe PAC 12 can add some teams and make their own conference…….

          • Do you really think if a PAC 12 conference was formed that it would be good for college hockey? ASU has to go somewhere eventually.

          • I was being sarcastic about it the pac 12 conference, knowing that a pac 12 hockey will not happen for a very long time if ever… We’ll see where ASU lands soon though.

      • The Big 10 looks at things from a long term perspective. By starting with Hockey they have their toe in the door at Notre Dame, and that can lead to football. Who knows it best? Notre Dame that is why they chose Hockey East in the first place. ( Not wanting to be part of the Big 10). As far as ASU is concerned, it does not make sense unless they have something in mind that is not obviously related to an even amount of teams. Note: BTN is on Cox ( the main cable operator in Tempe, Phoenix, and where I live Mesa), as well as Direct TV, so its not like Rutgers being added for BTN. I do believe that after the new TV Contract is signed, you will see more Conference Schools add Hockey. Here is something to keep in mind. Penn State is doing an entire Sports Facility Master Plan and they are upgrading everything ( except perhaps Pegula Ice Arena), so they expect to get a lot of money. Can it fail? Yes see Washington State and their upgrade. But I suspect they will not. See Penn State Hockey.

        • I’ve heard that Notre Dame was interested in joining the Big Ten when it was formed, but were never contacted by anyone. That’s why they went to Hockey East.

          • You may be correct, but isn’t that around the time they “aligned” with the ACC. The Big Ten has been attempting to add Notre Dame as a full member but it never happened, and probably won’t given ND’s television contract for football. So, it may have been payback.

            Disclaimer: Not saying the Big Ten hockey or excluding Notre Dame from the originals was a good idea ever.

          • Even if true, the BIG 10 is no longer the BIG 10. They just admitted a non-Big 10 member in to their league. They are the CCHA again.

        • Different thing from rebuilding and un-established program. Penn State, Ohio state are un-established, Michigan state has been down along with wisconsin. But notre dame’s resume has been just as good as St. Clouds and UMD (minus a title of course) the last ten years. But just to make it clear I am still not a fan of this big10 league. I just don’t think ASU would make any sense at all… might as well add air force and not go as far southwest as ASU, if they added air force at least I could see a few gopher games in colorado again…

    • I’m alright with that. Maybe we could convince the Bulldogs, wildcats, lakers, and falcons to sign up as well. But I think those are just as likely to happen as WMU and Miami joining.

    • The Big 10 is not going to accept a team outside the Big 5 football schools or Notre Dame. They are not trying to resurrect the CCHA.

  1. This makes perfect sense to me. I don’t see why they don’t move all their sports to the Big 10. There’s no compelling reason for them to be in the ACC (except money, I guess).

    I’m not a huge fan of HE’s expanded membership—I preferred the three games a season rather than two games with each conference team—but I imagine they will be looking for a replacement. While I’d love to see Harvard in HE, Harvard won’t move because all the other Ivys are in the ECAC. Maybe HE could pick up Holy Cross or Bentley from Atlantic Hockey; Bentley’s in Waltham and Holy Cross is in Worcester. Or maybe some team from the NEHC is ready to make the jump from DIII to DI. . . .

    As for more teams for the Big 10, Miami and WMU seem like non-starters because the NCHC only has eight teams as it is. Also, are all the sports at those schools DI? I believe this may be a requirement for Big 10 membership. If so, WCHA schools like Northern Michigan would also be disqualified. This is just speculation, though.

    • The ONLY reason is that ND wants to stay independent in football… The Big Kahuna. That is the glitch. The big wanted FULL membership, the 1st criteria. That was “waived” when Hopkins joined as an associate member in lacrosse. The major 2nd criteria, that all members be recognized research institutions, was more than adequately met by Hopkins. If that remains in play, most, if not all, of the schools being discussed won’t fly.

  2. Now let Minnesota, Minnesota State and Bemidji State move to the NCHC and maybe the Gophers can make a ticket to a game at Mariucci something worth buying again.

    • The NCHC may consider the Gophers but not Mankato or Bemidji. And since the Gophers aren’t leaving the Big 10, the Mariucci will be what it is for a long time to come.

      • I think bemidji or Mankato would be good candidates to round out the conference to ten if they do something ridiculous like bring in ASU.

          • Mankato Is different team then they use to be, they might make a great team to match against UNO or Miami.

          • It’s not about how good they are or how different they have become. When the BIG 10 bolted, the rest of the WCHA quickly divided in to the bold and the meek. The meek had no stomach for bigger plans. They mee had been holding back the conference for years. The bold wanted a strong conference. Hence, Mankato, Michigan Tech, Bemidji State and UAA were never a part of the NCHC plans. That opened the door for UNO, Western Michigan, Miami and Notre Dame. Notre Dame chose HE and that kept the NCHC at 8. Otherwise, I think Notre Dame’s inclusion would have meant an invite to a 10th school.

    • Not sure how money really plays into this one. The Big Ten was looking to be larger than 6 teams and the Hockey East-Notre Dame marriage was a little awkward. Notre Dame probably should’ve been in the BTHC from the start

      • How does this help them in anyway? just by adding teams? Its not like Notre is a powerhouse by any means. The big joke just wants the money that comes with notre.

          • Why not add teams that are powerhouses in that sport? Because the small 6 doesn’t care about hockey. Only about money. Why don’t they pressure them into moving all of their sports to the conference?

          • Just a guess, but maybe there are not a bunch of powerhouse hockey programs looking for a place to land. Oh, and maybe you are new to the college sports landscape but no conference is going to pressure Notre Dame into anything.

        • What money would that be? All Big Ten teams, even the ones that don’t have hockey, share the revenue. Adding ND is just a step in the conference growing. The crap 6 as you would say, wasn’t going to stay that way forever.

      • Lets see……football and basketball are propping up every other sport at these clump 6 schools…….I really cant imagine a conference like Atlantic is making money hand over fist. Its just the crap 6…, football and basketball first……hockey way down at the end.

        The demand curve for crappy hockey hasnt really found equilibrium with the supply of crappy hockey that the crap 6 is putting out.

        • Gopher hockey generates about $5.75 million / season in revenue. Michigan is well into the millions. So is Wisconsin. Maybe you should–you know–google stuff before you put it out there. I’d hate for you to spout off and look like a nincompoop.

          • So sit there and tell me that football and basketball make less than hockey…..go ahead…..try and say that. Especially for the crap 6 schools.

          • Nobody is saying that. But hockey is one of the 3 revenue producers at MN that help support the whole athletic department, men and women.

          • Ooooh, so now it’s “make less than”, instead of “prop up”?!

            Suuuure. I got it. Are you a politician? Just change your argument when someone calls you on your bllsht?

            Your original point was that “football and basketball are propping up every other sport at these clump 6 schools.” Which is easy to prove as factually wrong.

            Try again?

          • Take Michigan for example… really think hockey comes anywhere close to making what football does? But I’m sure you’ve looked at their books and do their accounting so you know that hockey is self funded there.

          • Ok, take Michigan. Michigan hockey doesn’t make nearly as much as Michigan football, obviously. And where do I claim such nonsense?

            Oh, right, I don’t.

            (I did claim Gopher hockey makes more than Gopher basketball because it’s provable from reported revenue.)

            But just because Michigan football makes more than Michigan hockey doesn’t mean that it supports hockey. Does football makes more? Yes. But Michigan hockey is self-sustaining and turns a tidy little profit.

            So you can stop putting words in my mouth with your silly little attempts at saving some face by altering your argument after I showed your point to be factually inaccurate.

            Your original comment is still wrong.

          • Additionally, I didn’t claim football or basketball make less. I know football and basketball (usually) make more. But even this isn’t always the case. Minnesota Men’s Basketball made a profit of $3.8 million. Now, math isn’t my forté, but last time I checked, that’s less than the $5.75 million in revenue the Gopher hockey team generates.

          • Might want to actually find some whining before putting that. Pretty sure there isn’t a sentence up there complaining….just facts/opinions.

          • True. Things can change….but at the moment, its god awful hockey coming out of that conference.

          • I do what I can. Sometimes it is a bit more fun to just play devils advocate. I’m sure at some point 3 or more teams from the big joke will get into the national tourney.

          • Well, it was apt. You need to explain the “profit thing” a little more clearly as it applies to universities.

          • Well, the response was to the local screamer who is offended because he believes that this move is all about money. It’s as if he is completely clueless about business and economics. Of course these leagues are looking to add teams that produce revenue. It’s and economic concept that goes back to the first business and it fits here too. These teams and leagues are businesses and need revenue to survive.

          • Universities do not require profit for sports programs. They fleece students and alumni for that. If they did, you would have no (pick one: swimming / diving; baseball; Lacrosse, Football in many cases, etc., etc.). However the Little 10 got greedy, and it backfired in a big way. The move was entirely about the coffers for them. There is an old saying in Bluegrass Music: If you get really, really talented, you can make tens of dollars playing it. The same thing usually applies to college hockey.

          • At no point in my post did I mention profits. I mentioned revenue, which is different, and which you actually agreed with when you mentioned the move being about the coffers. So the Big 10 was wise to bring in Notre Dame, a big name on the college athletics landscape which will attract fans and drive revenue.

          • “Are you new to economics? If these leagues and teams don’t make money they tend to go out of business.”. Sounds like a description of profit to me.

    • Why is your disdain for weak conferences limited to the Big Ten? How come your rants don’t include Atlantic Hockey, or the WCHA?

  3. Wow…how a prestgious (the most?) conference allowed themselves to get played by ND is just sad to me. ND never won a thing and still blew you off HE. Ouch. That’s hurts. ND is mid-west….and never should have been invited into HE to begin with. I did find the TV exposure comment amusing, since I’ve had to watch ND virtually every weekend over teams that I’d prefer to watch like, Quinnipiac, BU, Providence, Lowell…etc. Not to mention most of those teams have been superior to ND during their time in the NE. GB ND.

    • Sour grapes. man? I’d hardly to say HEA allowed themselves to be played. If you remember, ND had very high hopes coming to HEA… the travel AND the competition got to them.

      • JakeB, Honestly, no sour grapes here. I’m a Quinnipiac fan, so this year I have nothing to be bitter about this year…at least until this weekend!! My comments are just how I feel as a New Englander. My comments (I think) are valid. But we can all disagree and that is ok. Enjoy the tournament!!

        • Cool… I just think both sides took a shot in their own best interest, and it didn’t work out (as many suspected)… Simple as that.
          Maybe we’ll see you guys in HEA? The buzz has begun. But I’m inclined to think not… The Q can win in the ECAC, why leave.

          • Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s QU or nothing for HEA, otherwise just stay at 11. Good luck to your boys, but I’ll be pulling for Lowell (just because?). Both are strong teams… Enjoy, and may the best team win!

          • Probably, but they can be “special” in the ECAC… A little harder in HEA (as Notre Dame found out). That’s my point.

  4. Ugh…3 years ago, when nobody asked me what I thought about the Big Ten Hockey conference, I hated it. Now I’m going to hate it even more. Notre Dame is not a Big Ten school for any other sport, so now we add them for hockey because everyone hates the current conference? That’s awesome, let’s just keep adding more non Big Ten schools and just change the name.

    • So you’d rather add teams that don’t have hockey programs? You guys can keep yelling and screaming but Big 10 hockey is here to stay so you might as well get over it. It’s also going to grow and will produce national championship winners – should be fun watching your head explode when that happens!

      • It was supposed to produce NCs after NCs. Instead, they have been awful. Awful. Wisco canned their coach and I think Lucia should start looking at property in the SW as his days are numbered. Michigan State and Ohio State —- well, no reason to beat up the ladies. Penn State and Michigan had someone to crow about but Michigan will be lucky to win 1 game in the regionals. At least Notre Dame has a year to reconsider.

          • I can play that game as well…..every time someone says the crap 6 conference has the most national titles……

          • Wisconsin (2006), Michigan St. (2007) were most recent. Minnesota, Michigan have been in 2-3 finals since.

          • Lets see….how about overall performance? 13 NCHC teams to make the national tourney in 3 years…..4 teams from the crap 6 to make it in 3 years.

          • 13 teams and not a one could make the natty title game? Sounds like a nchc chokefest come national tournament time.

          • Everyone else who played Union in the tourney lost as well. Maybe they should be given a little credit for being a good team.

          • wow……one title game…..slow clap…. So that’s their only advantage in 3 years? One title game where they were spanked? I’d rather have a league that is competitive from top to bottom and puts teams in the national tourney.

        • No one said that it was going to produce one NC after another, and it has only been in business three years. You seem like you believe that you know everything about college hockey so you should know that this stuff is cyclical. Minnesota is down and Wisconsin is way down, and having both teams struggle like this at the same time has not happened for years, so the odds are that they will bounce back and compete for titles. The Big 10 will be fine. I imagine that you believe that the NCHC is the greatest hockey conference ever, given the number of teams that it has placed nationally the past couple of seasons, but it was only 10 years ago that the WCHA had 4 teams in the Frozen Four and that dominance did not last.

          • Top recruits do more talking with their walking than anything said on this board. The Big 10 is in serious trouble with attendance and quality. I know what I know.

          • The Big 10 will be fine. When the Big 10 started up a few years back, all you doomsdayers were yapping about it being the end of college hockey. Now you’ve had to do a 180 just to have something to talk about.

          • A few years back we (the apparent doomsayers) were right. Right because it hurt the schools that went to the Big 10. The NCHC, HE and ECAC have all improved. AH, Big 10 and WCHA all got worse although the WCHA has done better than anticipated. The biggest loser – the Big 10. Arrogance. Keep drinking the kool-aid. You nearly admit as much when you say, “The Big 10 will be fine.” They aren’t fine and there is little reason to expect they will be fine. Their biggest strategy to date is to limit the age of incoming freshmen in all of college hockey and to use their status with the NCAA to ram it down college hockey’s throat. Let’s just make a division for them – Division 0 – and let them compete for their own national championship.

          • It’s only been three years. And up to this point the Big 10 has the same number of national championships as the teams in the NCHC and WCHA, and has put one more team in the NC game than those conferences combined. Apparently in your world, three seasons qualifies for big picture thinking. You can keep attempting to will the Big 10 out of existence. Good luck.

          • Will them out of existence? They’re way too funny being around to want them to go away. So are guys like you.

          • Joe, there can be no serious defense of the league unless some serious contenders are scavenged from other western leagues. Attendance will not come back in the current configuration.

          • Joe, tell us in your infinite wisdom, when the attendance in the league improves satisfactorily? Recruits have bolted WI over the past few years because they don’t want to play in the B10. They end up with the Sioux or another NCHC team

          • Flattered that you believe that I have infinite wisdom. Don’t know what the satisfactory level is. I just don’t believe that the Big 10 is going away. Just like the conference realignment that shook up football and basketball, affiliations are changing in hockey. The games will go on whether I enjoy the ride or get worked up over it and given that it is only hockey played by teenagers, it’s not worth getting twisted in knots.

          • I think it’s funny that Joe accuses you of knowing it all, when he’s clearly the one acting like he knows it all.
            You and I agree that the Big Ten has major attendance and quality of play issues. But, I think that we also both need to acknowledge that even if games started averaging 1,000 fans per game, the league isn’t going anywhere. They make money from the BTN, even when the BTN isn’t showing any games. As long as the conference makes money off of the TV deals, what’s their incentive to fix what’s broken?
            You actually a UND fan that lives in Minnesota? How’s that work out for you? I have divided allegiances between Wisco and UND, and I get enough crap from my Madison friends. Haha.

          • The only point I am making is that Big 10 hockey is not going away. That is not knowing it all, just being pretty confident in one thing. And what is broken in college hockey? The CCHA went away and the B10 and NCHC took it’s place. We now have two new D-1 schools, and, given, the size of those schools, they will bring more attention to the game. And attention can potentially provide growth.

          • I had a nice, long reply to your original post that USCHO didn’t like for whatever reason. The TL;DR version is that you put a whole bunch of words in my mouth. I never said that the conference is going away, and I never doubted that someone in the conference would win a national title. The conference was a stupid money grab 3 years ago, and the fans are voicing their displeasure via empty arenas. 5,000 people showed up for the conference tourney this year. Nobody cares. The Big Ten undid 30 years of history and tradition to form a conference that nobody wanted. Wisconsin won the inaugural Big Ten Tournament, and STILL saw declining attendance last year, even before everyone knew they’d only win 4 games. But you’re right, the conference isn’t going away. BTN pays too much money to the schools to not air the games. And adding Notre Dame to the Big Ten isn’t going to grow college hockey. It’s adding a non Big Tem team to the conference that was created so that the Big Ten could have a hockey conference for it’s 14 member schools. You want growth, and so do I. Moving teams from conference to conference won’t accomplish that goal. And making the lifelong fans hate the changes isn’t going to accomplish that goal.

          • Of course it was a money grab. These leagues and teams are business entities and need revenues. And teams are changing conferences across the college athletics landscape and a bunch of anonymous posts from the upset fans will not change that. I grew up on WCHA hockey and miss the league but my life will go on without the old version, unlike many folks who seem to want to hang on to the past. Oh, and don’t we all make money grabs on a regular basis? I bet that you have changed jobs at some point in your life in search of a bigger paycheck.

          • Joe, the problem is that we as fans are not planning to come back anytime soon. I don’t even follow Bucky anymore during the regular season. My Gopher buddies say the same thing. Overpriced tickets to see Penn St or Notre Dame? I wouldn’t go if they were given to me.

          • That 5000 was tickets sold, not turnstile numbers. I counted about ten people on each side of the benches and about another twenty on the end during a semi final game. 200-300 total…including those who worked in concessions and security.

          • The B10 needs rivalries for WI and MN, and adding more former CCHA schools does nothing to help. Lets face it. MN and WI bring have the ability to bring in big attendance numbers. 10-15,000 a night during the regular season, and a packed Xcel energy center during conf tourney time. (Nodak helped with this as well) The league has to go after the likes of the Sioux, UMD, SCSU, and maybe MI Tech.

          • Your so angry, you are already worried about Minnesota getting a start on next year while you have a chance to play for a championship this YEAR!

            I do not disagree with you that the big10 made a horrible choice making the big 10 conference. It feels wkward even though the teams play each other in every other sport hockey was different and I think minny/wiscy + Michigan/state @ ohio were ok with that but those in power felt differently. Watching the games year 3 into this disaster is like watching a guy and a girl trying out that first kiss still. Things just seem wkward. I do not think adding ND will make the conference any better. They will still beat up on each other and one team will make the NCAA maybe 2. To me adding ND is a huge slap in the face to the football and basketball sides of things when ND spurred the big 10 and when ND and Michigan ended their football rivalry.

            Who knows if this isn’t a bridge down the road. The big 10 has hurt college hockey in s lot of ways. CC has been awful so has wiscy, Unfortunally college hockey itself has no control and is self destructing in my eyes. the NCAA. Frozen four is in Tampa bay!? The regionals make no sense sometimes especially Midwest and West. The cost is probably the biggest factor but the solution of having teams host the regionals I disagree with because when Michigan was able to host at Yost people whined like little babies. Something needs to be done with the regionals though. I do not know the answer but a best 2/3 sounds like an idea so UND fans can stop crying when they get eliminated. I would respect UND fans if they were not some of the worst fans in college hockey you are right up there with buckeye fans.

            College hockey has some serious problems and needs to some how get control of it. The solutions are out there, how we get there I simply do not know. If Michigan wasn’t in the NCAA tournament I would wish for all the crappy teams to make the frozen four. I actually do not think it matters who makes it the frozen four attendance is going to look awful. There might be people in attendance because they handed out free tickets

            I will conclude that the big 10 does lay in fault for some of the problems in college hockey but I also look at who is running college hockey as the significant problem then and UND fans. Ha ha ha sorry UND FAN had to. You are good fans some just go way to far sometimes. Don’t get me wrong I hate when Michigan loses. Heck I am from SoCal and the first time I saw a college hockey game I fell in love. It has nothing compared to the BIG House. Yost is 7,000 of die hard fans. See you in the regional finals hopefully. Our CCM line is pretty dam special.

            On my iPhone sorry for spelling and grammar no one is perfect.

          • Well said, At this moment, the only teams from the conference that will fill the Kohl and Mariucci are WI and MN. The rivalry with MI can grow quickly for Bucky and Goldy. The rest will take decades. ND? Sorry, I would rather have a root canal.

          • That is true. Recruits are a problem as well. Why? Who wants to play in the conference when they can play in the NCHC?

          • “It’s only been in business for 3 years.” That sounds like the whole league is essentially a bunch of newbies like Penn State. Well, Penn State actually looks and plays more like a grizzled veteran team. With the 2 Michigan teams, Minny and Wisconsin, the league was expecting magic from day one. The only magic that happened was the disappearing teams trick.

          • And it hasn’t happened, but you guys are not going to will it out of existence. The teams involved have plenty of history that says they will be fine.

          • Joe, I don’t think anyone is trying to will it out of existence, however, the league is not getting stronger, and the serious attendance issues at WI and MN will not be resolved without adding other former WCHA schools. That will only disrupt CH overall, but it will happen, in part because of money.

          • Well he’s right Joe, you must have amnesia… Many media and those touting the BIG, said exactly that at the time. Two leagues panicked and all hell broke loose.
            Many long-time CH fans, myself included, saw it as a money grab in disguise, with PSU wanting to start a program as a perfect excuse.

          • The schools had no choice. League by-laws said that a hockey conference was mandatory. What is bad about this for college hockey? We now have a couple more D-1 teams and, like it or not, when bigger schools are involved there is more publicity for the game.

          • You don’t see the point. The BIG has to pilfer ND and another established program because their own conference can’t produce two more teams. How is that better for college hockey? Quite the contrary, I’d say the publicity the BIG has created has been negative for the game.
            It’s all about their attitude… Be a player, not a ruler.

          • The Big 10 did not pilfer Notre Dame. Notre Dame has enough leverage to make it’s own decisions. You guys can’t see past today to know that the Big 10 will survive and thrive in the long run. Seems like you want to go back in time and that ain’t happening.

          • OK, Joe, then do what’s best for college hockey right now. Don’t give CH fans the BS about looking for an established program first. Take Arizona State… Don’t disrupt anything else. Large, fellow Power 5 school, BIG profile… Simple, don’t you think?

          • Tell the folks at the Big 10, not me. You and the doomsdayers have been whining about the destruction of college athletics for years. Penn State joins the Big 10. Texas teams join the Big 8 and the SWC is gone. Big East schools leave for the ACC. Big 12 teams leave for the SEC. Nebraska goes to the Big 10. Maryland and Rutgers join the Big 10. Notre Dame joins the ACC for hoops. Hockey realignment. You guys have been yelling for a couple of decades about the traditions being ruined and how the games were being destroyed, yet somehow the popularity continues to grow. Face it, the schools are in charge, not a bunch of anonymous internet rabble.

          • Why wouldn’t I? I thought that you might show your displeasure by not watching and providing revenue to the evil hockey guys. Supporting the very programs that you are mad at is a rather strange strategy.

          • The B10 doesnt want ASU. Frankly, if I were a guy who was in on the decision, I would pluck former WCHA members for the league. Further disruption, and hardly good for CH overall.

          • That is a myth and a lie. There was no mandate to form a conference, no bylaws, no rules. A simple Google search puts the lie to that statement.

          • Okay then, have it your way. Good luck stopping Big 10 hockey. Your anonymous tantrums will certainly stop the league in it’s tracks.

  5. The Big X snagged Notre Dame. Notre Dame got played. But who cares? It is still the Big X and if they add Arizona State, we should call them the Big 8 PAC or something obnoxious like that. The last time the Irish were relevant was when they were in the WCHA.

  6. Don’s see them rushing to add an 8th team, based on what the commissioner said in BTN interview they want to find a school that meets all criteria (like Notre Dame) so they know they have a good fit. One of the things he mentioned when talking Notre Dame was geography and ASU isn’t in big ten country. Unless big ten wants ASU for all sports, I don’t see them as the 8th team in the conference. I’d be surprised if it’s not 7 teams for at least 2 years, unless a current member adds hockey or they add UNO or UMD because they are affiliated with current big ten Universities.

  7. To maximize tournament attendance in Mpls and Grand Rapids and reduce team travel you could swap Mankato and Bemidji to the NCHC and Miami and W Mich to the WCHA.
    Adding Arizona St the NCHC could have a west(Az St, UNO, CC, Denver) and east div (SCSU, UMD, Bemidji, Mankato) – UND could divide their schedule between the east and west. Twice as many conference games within your div. or alternate every other year.
    The NCHC, WCHA and Big Ten could then set up some stuff to enhance their noncon schedules and keep their rivalries alive (Minn, Mich and Ohio schools).

    • No, the B10 must go after top flight schools from the old WCHA, With four former CCHA teams in the B10, it is time to add some established schools from the west. I think, to get positive responses from the offer, the B10 goes after three or four teams simultaneously. Nodak, UMD, SCSU and possibly MI Tech. MN and WI arenas will remain empty until we get some rivalries back. Besides MN and possibly MI, most WI fans have little interest in seeing the other clubs from the league that generate very little excitement in Madison and Minneapolis.

  8. You could even add Air Force into the mix to even the teams out(would be kind of cool to see the Coach Serratores go at each other), moving UND to the NCHC east div.
    That would ripple to Atlantic, ECAC and HE to even things out. I think a lot of people mentioned QU moving to HE on the other thread- From the press box, moving HC or RIT to ECAC.
    Makes the most sense logistically and for rivalries. But the Denver’s and UND’s hiarchy probably wouldn’t agree to it.

  9. So, they have to change the name of the conference since Notre Dame is not a member of the Big 10. To survive, the Big 10 HAD to go get a team from outside their conference. What next, ASU? The snobs of hockey couldn’t make it on their own.

    • You sound bitter. What’s the matter? Your Fighting Hawks aren’t a member of one of the power five conferences so you have to rail against the Big Ten? Maybe a Tums will help.

      • Yeah, I’m bitter because the Sioux are one of 4 NCHC teams in the NCAAs while Michigan is the only BIG10. I’m bitter because I am so jealous of the Gophers getting an early start to the 2016-2017 season. I’m bitter because the NCHC has great rivalries and the BIG 10 is thinking of renting out space in their rinks during games to outside events. I get tired of big schools thinking they are special when they have been exposed as mediocre. But they still want to rule the NCAA ice hockey rules even though they are 10% of all of college hockey. I’m taking great delight in the turmoil in the Twin Cities over the demise of the Gopher program ever since the move to the Big 10. Rate the following teams: UMD, SCSU, Bemidji, Mankato and the Gophers. Now tell me the respective wins/loss of those 5 teams this season. 1-7-2. They lost the season series with each team. They are number 5 of 5 in Minnesota adn yet the Gophers fans still chant “Gopher Rejects” when they play those teams. Too bad they didn’t play St. Thomas this year, They could have been 6 of 6. What’s to be bitter about?

        • Well, don’t be surprised if the Sioux and some other high end formenr WCHA clubs are invited into the B10, because short of this happening, the Kohl and Mariucci will have lots of empty seats.

    • See, but you didn’t change your username even though its not really accurate, right? You do realize that the Big Ten didn’t change its name when it exceeded Ten members, and has gone along just fine.

  10. Happy to see Notre Dame leave Hockey East, did not make sense geographically. Now if we can get NBCSN to stop being the Notre Dame network when it comes to college hockey, I would go back to being a die hard college hockey fan.

  11. Bertagna is full of it. HE dominant? The premier conf in college hockey? When did that start? Two years back when the B10 began? No commissioner should thump his chest so, when the WCHA had ALWAYS been the premier league, and always won the most titles, including five straight in the first decade of this century, which included an all WCHA final four. Over the time that HE has existed, the old WCHA won 11 titles thru 2013. How many has HE won?

    • From 1985 to 2013 HE has won 8 titles and won 1 more since then. Over the last 17 years HE has had 24 of the 68 Frozen Four qualifiers and has had at least one finalist in 15 of the last 19 years. It’s easy to cherry pick data for either side. However, it is a defendable claim that HE is the best conference in college hockey, something you appear to potentially agree with for the last two years. And considering Bertagna made those comments today, it seems reasonable and I’m not sure how past conferences have any bearing. It’s like saying the Denver Broncos are not the best team in football because they didn’t beat the Decatur Staleys. Having lived in both HE and old WCHA territory, the WCHA fans were in general insufferable and smug. Thankful it was the Twin Cities and not Grand Forks, or it would have been even worse.


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