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Hockey Proposed to Join the Big-Ten

From State College.com:

Athletic directors across the Big Ten plan to recommend that men’s ice hockey be established as an official conference sport, the Big Ten announced Monday.

In a press release issued at 1 p.m., the Big Ten reported that athletic directors at Penn State, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Ohio State and Wisconsin intend to make the recommendation in June. The recommendation will go before the Big Ten Council of Presidents and Chancellors.

It will suggest that men’s ice hockey become an official conference sport effective with the 2013-14 academic year—with participation from all the universities noted above, according to the press release.

continued…

Filed in: Non-NHL Hockey, College Hockey, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: big-ten, college+hockey

Comments

Primis's avatar

Dangit Alanah, I’d just posted this in the KK Members’ blog.  wink

This is huge, HUGE news.  And it may not be bad for all involved, as it may now allow the WCHA and CCHA to take on member programs they have previously rejected—such as a program like Alabama-Huntsville that is struggling as an independent after their conference disbanded and really needs a conference home.

It also may allow for some geographic realigning of conferences so they make more sense (such as a team from Alaska in the CCHA being able to go to the WCHA, and Michigan Tech going over from the WCHA to the CCHA).

It will, however, deplete the powers from two of the top collegiate hockey conferences.  For those in Canada who maybe can’t appreciate the magnitude, imagine if several storied OHL and WHL teams left their leagues to form their own superleague.

At any rate… to those that said this was a pipedream, it clearly wasn’t.

Posted by Primis on 03/21/11 at 05:32 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

I’m very excited to see this development.  It is going to mean that my favorite team, Ohio State, is going to get stomped on a regular basis, but on the whole it is going to be great for hockey.  Its always great to see the great programs at Miami, Mich, and Mich St. come and play, but I’ve always want to see Minnesota and Wisconsin as well.  Can’t wait for 2013!

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 03/21/11 at 05:40 PM ET

Hank1974's avatar

Great news!
I watched the Michigan-Ferris St. game this past weekend on CBS College and it was fantastic! Most entertaining game I’ve seen since the World Jr’s in December.

The NHL is slowly being trumped by many other leagues in terms of entertainment value.
CHL, NCAA, World Jr’s, they’re all more entertaining than the boring chip-and-chase, rebound and deflection crap the NHL’s been brewing for years.

Posted by Hank1974 on 03/21/11 at 05:42 PM ET

Down River Dan's avatar

As a season ticket holder for UM I hope this does not ruin great rivalries within the CCHA. I hope that non Big Ten hockey programs in the CCHA are not hurt by this proposal. Smaller programs like BGSU, FSU, Lake State…etc have competitive teams and most likely will be forced to form a new league without those weekend series with UM/MSU. The same goes for smaller schools in the WCHA.

Posted by Down River Dan on 03/21/11 at 05:42 PM ET

YzermanZetterberg's avatar

Hank1974—

And strange as it may seem, these crazy upstart leagues are said to have something they call “rule books”—and believe it or not, they actually require the players to follow the “rules” in these so called rule books. Will wonders never cease?

Posted by YzermanZetterberg on 03/21/11 at 05:48 PM ET

Hank1974's avatar

And strange as it may seem, these crazy upstart leagues are said to have something they call “rule books”—and believe it or not, they actually require the players to follow the “rules” in these so called rule books. Will wonders never cease?

LOL! But the NHL won’t let something like a silly rule book or entertainment get in the way of their daily business!

Posted by Hank1974 on 03/21/11 at 05:52 PM ET

SYF's avatar

Excellent news.  Here’s hoping the games could be televised as well.  No reason not to after the excellent showing at the Big House between MSU and UofM.

Posted by SYF from the team that re-signed KFQ and DFC by KFH on 03/21/11 at 05:59 PM ET

YzermanZetterberg's avatar

LOL! But the NHL won’t let something like a silly rule book or entertainment get in the way of their daily business!

What can I say…Bettman Knows Best!

(Oh geez, now I don’t know whether to laugh, cry or vomit…guess I’ll do all three.)

On a more serious note, I do share the concerns Down River Dan expressed about the end of rivalries and the teams left behind. But I will NOT miss those pains in the rear from Miami.)

Posted by YzermanZetterberg on 03/21/11 at 06:00 PM ET

YzermanZetterberg's avatar

I wonder if the MAC will follow suit if this goes through? And what happens to Notre Dame (is there Big East hockey)? Maybe I should actually read the original article, huh?

Posted by YzermanZetterberg on 03/21/11 at 06:04 PM ET

Avatar

Once the Big Ten TV network was formed this step was probably inevitable. But I agree with DRD, I think for U of M & State, to be losing the rivalries with Lake Superior, Western Michigan and Ferris State will be a sad thing to see.

Posted by mc keeper on 03/21/11 at 06:14 PM ET

Primis's avatar

I wonder if the MAC will follow suit if this goes through? And what happens to Notre Dame (is there Big East hockey)? Maybe I should actually read the original article, huh?

Posted by YzermanZetterberg on 03/21/11 at 04:04 PM ET

None of the others have enough D1 programs to do so.  It requires at least 6 teams according to NCAA bylaw as I understand it, and Penn State makes 6.  I’m not sure any other conference could even get 4….  the MAC only has Western and Miami,OH.  The Big East has Notre Dame, BC, and…. maaayyybbe one other I’m forgetting.  But that’s it.

Posted by Primis on 03/21/11 at 06:29 PM ET

Avatar

Love this, and love that it sounds like the inclusion of Penn State hockey as an NCAA sport might have had something to do with this.  WE ARE…..PENN STATE!

Posted by VAHockeyFan on 03/21/11 at 06:34 PM ET

Red Winger's avatar

As a fan of Lake State hockey I see both positives and negatives in this.

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie on 03/21/11 at 06:42 PM ET

wolverine's avatar

I think it’s all good news.  Can’t wait until Indiana and Illinois get programs.  They both have great club programs, all they need now are new arena’s.  7,000 seats would be perfect.  Soon you’ll have 8 Big Ten teams.

Posted by wolverine on 03/21/11 at 07:15 PM ET

SYF's avatar

I used to live in Iowa City, IA about a half mile from Kinnick Stadium for a short while before settling in Las Vegas and I just don’t see a viable Men’s Hockey Program taking root in the University of Iowa.  Hell, I can see Nebraska establishing their Hockey program before Iowa.

Posted by SYF from the team that re-signed KFQ and DFC by KFH on 03/21/11 at 07:27 PM ET

wolverine's avatar

Some Big Ten schools will never have a program.  I do remember when UIC (University of Illinois at Chicago) had a team.  Love to see Northwestern join the fray.  Basketball is laughable there.

Posted by wolverine on 03/21/11 at 08:02 PM ET

Avatar

As a fan of Northern Michigan, having followed Michigan State for the past few years, and a fan of the CCHA in general, I’m not happy at all.  There were a lot of great rivalries that just won’t have the same fire in them as non-conference games that don’t matter for points in the standings.  The CCHA becomes a weaker conference without UofM, MSU, and OSU, and after losing Nebraska-Omaha last season to the WCHA.  How is it going to affect recruiting for the smaller schools now that there will be a powerhouse Big Ten conference?  Does that mean the CCHA has to take in Alabama-Huntsville, after they denied their application over the summer?  When it was announced the Penn State was getting a D-I program, a Big Ten conference was inevitable, but I think it will be at the expense of the other conferences, especially the CCHA.

Posted by crewbierae on 03/21/11 at 08:23 PM ET

Down River Dan's avatar

Hell, I can see Nebraska establishing their Hockey program before Iowa

actually The univeristy of Nebraska at Omaha has a D1 program and until this year played in the CCHA, and now play in the WCHA.

Posted by Down River Dan on 03/21/11 at 09:08 PM ET

Primis's avatar

As a fan of Lake State hockey I see both positives and negatives in this.

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste. Marie on 03/21/11 at 04:42 PM ET

I get that, but LSSU is a DII program in the GLIAC in every other sport.  I never understood how or why school like Northern, Ferris, and Lake State which are GLIAC schools were expected to truly compete in D1 hockey.  And to be honest, they usually don’t compete that well, aside from the odd year where a Northern can ride Tarkki or a Ferris has a ton of seniors.

I think it’s good long-term for the CCHA to lose some of the “powers”.  It lets some of the other programs establish themselves better and have their day.  And there’s no reason they can’t still play Mich and Mich St. in nonconference play a couple times a year.

I think it’s good for the WCHA for similar reasons, although the “W” still has the monster that is North Dakota.

And I think it’s good for the Big Ten schools because now the Minnesotas and Wisconsins play the Michigan and Michigan States every… single… year.

The one thing that might truly be hurt beyond repair is the holiday GLI and then the Mason Cup.  If you lose MSU and UM form those… I don’t know how you sell them to people now.

Does that mean the CCHA has to take in Alabama-Huntsville, after they denied their application over the summer?  When it was announced the Penn State was getting a D-I program, a Big Ten conference was inevitable, but I think it will be at the expense of the other conferences, especially the CCHA.

Posted by crewbierae on 03/21/11 at 06:23 PM ET

I disagree.  Currently, the CCHA is a conference that has Alaska Fairbanks in its fold -0- a situation that benefits NOBODY.  Maybe now the WCHA can take UAF, or a new west-coast breakoff can snap them up (and maybe some Cali schools will finally step up and take the plunge like they’ve talked about?) instead and leave the WCHA as the Mountain/Midwest league, and the CCHA loses some of the old guard that was so resistant to change.  A good program like Miami gets to shine even more now, and a program like Western Michigan doesn’t have to feel so hopeless and egt to the Joe only once every 17 years.

And I also see how being “forced” to take in a UA-H program is a bad thing for anyone if it saves hockey in Alabama.  I thought it was stupid that they didn’t bring them in anyways.

Anyone who truly follows NCAA hockey knew this was coming.  This shake-up has been needed for some time.  I don’t see other conferences being able to follow the BIg Ten’s lead, but I do see it changing the landscape in a way that has needed to be changed anyways for quite some time.

At any rate, NCAA hockey is about to go truly Big Time in the Big Ten, with an absolute monster of a BCS conference backing it up.  Hockey is already a true revenue-producing sport at some schools (at many the only one outside hoops and football), and I think this in the long-term will help it do moreso at other schools.

Posted by Primis on 03/21/11 at 10:40 PM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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