WCHA picks, Oct. 17-19

Brandon last week: 9-6-2
Jack last week: 9-6-2
Brandon’s record-to-date: 9-6-2
Jack’s record-to-date: 9-6-2

Thursday-Friday, Oct. 17-18

Alaska at Penn State
Who are these Nanooks and what did they do with the downtrodden punching bags the WCHA is used to seeing each year? Winning a game in Houghton is impressive. Winning two (2!) games in Houghton is unbelievable. Fairbanks gets a solid test when it visits Penn State this weekend. If it can steal another road win, we’d be willing to crown the Nanooks as a real threat in the league.
Brandon: Penn State sweeps Fairbanks, 3-1 and 4-2
Jack: PSU 5-1 on Friday; Alaska 3-2 on Saturday

Friday-Saturday, Oct. 18-19

Ferris State at Miami
The Bulldogs did an awesome job of closing out a game against Colgate last week that they would have more than likely lost a season ago. Coach Bob Daniels praised the upperclassmen for the win. Now it’s time to see if they can do it again against a rebuilding RedHawks squad with first-year coach Chris Bergeron, a really familiar face around the WCHA.
Brandon: Ferris sweeps Miami, 2-1 and 3-2
Jack: Miami sweeps, 3-1 and 4-2

Western Michigan at/vs. Bowling Green

It was disappointing to see how poorly the Falcons looked at times during the IceBreaker tournament last weekend, especially since they played the host in Toledo. What’s more, they lost to the Broncos 5-2 on Saturday. We expect them to look improved in Week 3.
Brandon: BG wins Friday, 4-2; WMU wins Saturday, 5-3
Jack: WMU 4-2 on Saturday; BG 5-2 on Sunday

Northern Michigan at Boston University
The Terriers will be coming off a 13-day layoff from the time they beat Union 7-3 on Oct. 5 to when the first puck drops against the Wildcats. That could be either great or bad for NMU, which split with Michigan  State last week. A rusty BU squad could be a boon for the Wildcats, who are looking steal a road win or two early on this season.
Brandon: NMU wins Friday, 2-1; BU wins Saturday, 5-0
Jack: BU sweeps 4-2 and 4-3

Lake Superior State at Michigan
After a pair of tough losses against Denver, the Lakers are in need of a statement win. Nothing says statement win quite like winning at Yost Ice Arena in Ann Arbor. Yes, LSSU lost a few talented bodies from last year’s squad, but coach Damon Whitten has the program on the upswing. This series is crucial in keeping LSSU on the rise.
Brandon: LSSU wins Friday 4-3; Michigan wins Saturday, 3-0
Jack: LSSU on Friday; UM 3-2 on Saturday

North Dakota at Minnesota State
Slow our beating hearts, but we get THIS kind of matchup in Week 3?! Mankato is a team trying to win a national title, and North Dakota is still a powerhouse, so it’ll be interesting to see who walks away with a win or two in this series. It could say a lot about how the rest of the season (and the NCAA tournament) will play out.
Brandon: Mankato sweeps, 3-0 and 3-2
Jack: MSU sweeps, 5-3 and 4-3