INCH Power Rankings
Sweeps by Boston
College, Michigan and Minnesota Duluth helped those three teams
take control of their conference races with three weeks remaining
in the regular season. Meanwhile, the ECAC's leaderboard got even
more confusing with just two weeks left to sort it all out.
Here's how the
Inside College Hockey editors and staff rank the rest of the nation's
top teams (along with movement since last week and a note). You
us know what you think, including your name and hometown, and
we'll share your thoughts below.
Eagles could see injured star Ben Eaves return this weekend.
That's something like the Yankees adding A-Rod.
(14-1-3 Hockey East). LAST WEEK: W vs. Boston University, 2-1
ot (Beanpot); W at Massachusetts, 5-2; W vs. Massachusetts,
6-1. THIS WEEK: vs. UMass Lowell, at UMass Lowell.
who lost just two of their first 22 games, have doubled that
number in their last seven (2-4-1).
(14-5-3 WCHA). LAST WEEK: W vs. Colorado College, 5-2; L vs.
Colorado College, 4-1. THIS WEEK: at Minnesota State, at Minnesota
the best team in the league until someone else proves otherwise,"
said Red Berenson a day before his team moved past Miami and
into the CCHA lead.
(16-5-1 CCHA). LAST WEEK: W vs. Miami, 4-1; W vs. Miami, 8-5.
THIS WEEK: vs. Bowling Green, vs. Bowling Green.
time the Bulldogs went 12 consecutive games without a loss was
March 1985, which is also the date of UMD's last Frozen Four
(16-5-1 WCHA). LAST WEEK: W vs. Minnesota, 6-1; W vs. Minnesota,
4-1. THIS WEEK: at Colorado College, at Colorado College.
night dead: Black Bears have been shut out in three of their
last five Saturday games.
(12-4-2 Hockey East). LAST WEEK: W at Northeastern, 3-1; T at
Northeastern, 0-0 ot. THIS WEEK: vs. Providence, vs. Providence.
had never been swept in a season series by UMD. And it's probably
been a while since they had a 40% penalty kill for a weekend,
(11-10-1 WCHA). LAST WEEK: L at Minnesota Duluth, 6-1; L at
Minnesota Duluth, 4-1. THIS WEEK: vs. Alaska Anchorage, vs.
mandated that Mike Eaves have no contact with his team last
week. We like to think he rearranged the items on his desk about
(11-6-5 WCHA). LAST WEEK: Off. THIS WEEK: vs. St. Cloud State,
vs. St. Cloud State.
know to bet the "over" when DU and Mankato meet. The
Pioneers and Mavs combined for 47 goals in four meetings this
(8-10-4 WCHA). LAST WEEK: W vs. Minnesota State, 7-1; W vs.
Minnesota State, 9-7. THIS WEEK: at Michigan Tech, at Michigan
in St. Cloud have a new favorite element (B) after freshman
goalie Tim Boron got the Huskies a pair of wins.
(12-7-3 WCHA). LAST WEEK: W vs. Bemidji State, 5-2; W vs. Bemidji
State, 3-2. THIS WEEK: at Wisconsin, at Wisconsin.
you might, Wildcats, we don't think you can catch Dartmouth
for the state lead in ties (8).
(8-6-5 Hockey East). LAST WEEK: T at UMass Lowell, 3-3 ot; T
vs. UMass Lowell, 3-3 ot. THIS WEEK: vs. Northeastern.
hang 12 goals on RedHawks this weekend after Miami had allowed
14 goals in the previous month.
(15-7-2 CCHA). LAST WEEK: L at Michigan, 4-1; L at Michigan,
8-5. THIS WEEK: Off.
the Tigers played like they'd just heard about that whole "hosting
the West Regional" thingy.
(9-9-2 WCHA). LAST WEEK: L at North Dakota, 5-2; W at North
Dakota, 4-1. THIS WEEK: vs. Minnesota Duluth, vs. Minnesota
school now: Friday's crowd of 8,373 was the first hockey sellout
ever at the Mullins Center, and over 3,000 more than the biggest
hoops crowd of the year.
(12-6-2 Hockey East). LAST WEEK: L vs. Boston College, 5-2;
L at Boston College, 6-1. THIS WEEK: at Boston University, vs.
team in the ECAC? We think so. A 6-0-0 record against the top-four
teams in the league.
(11-5-2 ECAC). LAST WEEK: L vs. Yale, 3-1; W vs. Princeton,
4-2. THIS WEEK: at Union, at Rensselaer.
||Not a good
sign when these words are uttered by your head coach, "I
don't know what went wrong."
(12-4-2 ECAC). LAST WEEK: T vs. Union, 2-2 ot; L vs. Rensselaer,
4-0. THIS WEEK: at St. Lawrence, at Clarkson.
go Jon Gleed. This sign was held by a ladyfriend at Lynah on
Saturday: "Gleed's gonna score at least once 2-Nite. Happy
Valentine's Day. Go Big Red!"
(10-5-3 ECAC). LAST WEEK: W vs. Princeton, 6-1; W vs. Yale,
2-1. THIS WEEK: at Rensselaer, at Union.
– goalie Dave Caruso has won three straight starts and
five in a row dating back to Nov. 21.
(14-10-0 CCHA). LAST WEEK: W vs. Nebraska-Omaha, 3-1; W vs.
Nebraska-Omaha, 4-3. THIS WEEK: at Western Michigan, at Western
suffered the first loss to UAF of his career Friday night. We'd
like to say the sun still came up the next day, but it was winter
(14-9-1 CCHA). LAST WEEK: L at Alaska-Fairbanks, 5-4; W at Alaska-Fairbanks,
3-2. THIS WEEK: vs. Nebraska-Omaha, vs. Nebraska-Omaha.
Friars' last seven games, only Boston College has scored more
than two goals – or come away with a win.
(6-8-5 Hockey East). LAST WEEK: W vs. Boston University, 2-1.
THIS WEEK: at Maine, at Maine.
we think these guys are going away, they come back with an impressive
(11-6-1 ECAC). LAST WEEK: W at Harvard, 3-2; W at Brown, 4-0.
THIS WEEK: vs. Cornell, vs. Colgate.
out: Bemidji State
Notre Dame, Holy Cross, Northern Michigan, Bemidji State,
there some super secret formula you're failing to mention to help
you determine these rankings? Because I think that logic may have
little to nothing to do with it. So North Dakota loses (and pretty
badly mind you) to SIXTH PLACE CC, the same CC that has a losing
record in the conference, and they don't budge from #2. Michigan
and Duluth sweep Miami and Minnesota, the first place teams in their
conferences, and somehow manage NOT to jump them? I didn't know
that having the words "North Dakota" printed on the front
of a jersey somehow gave you a gift of at least two places in the
rankings, because both UM and UMD should have jumped them after
this weekend's performances..... but then again, what the heck to
I know right. After all, I let logic get in the way.
have gone 2-4-1 in their last seven games and i'm just
wondering how they are still at number 2, that confuses me!
takes a sweep of miami for them to drop down 4 spots below the badgers,
where they belong....i think i remember mike, of grand rapids saying:"Do
the Badger fans think their team is better than Miami or Michigan?
That's why you're not higher than #8." As I recall, wisconsin
won the only meeting between michigan and wisc. And yeah, i think
wisconsin is MUCH better than miami, who has no impressive wins,
while wisconsin has a full resume. I guess i'll save the talk for
playoff times though, hope to be seeing miami!
I was surprised
that UMD didn't move up to #2 and UND drop to #4 in the power poll,
given sweeps by both UMD and Michigan last weekend, combined with
recent UND weakness.
Bob "Old WIldcat" Roetger, Andover, MA
Wake up and
rank North Dakota based on their play. Yes, they are good, but as
you point out they are 2-4-1 in their last 7. Michigan beats the
only other half-way decent team in the CCHA. Put them at #3 if you
want, but they will lose in the first round of the NCAA tournament
anyway. MN-Duluth manhandled a very good Gopher team and is the
team to beat in the WCHA. What in the world happened to UNH? Is
Hockey East becoming a 2 horse conference with BC & Maine.
Mike - Woodbury,
Wolverines you were excellent this weekend! In fact, through most
of the first period of Saturday's game Michigan played lights-out
hockey holding Miami (then seventh place) to a near-fifty-percent
save percentage. With the new Ice Hockey RPI's also having Michigan
in third place (with the ninth best strength of schedule), the CCHA
has undoubtedly been underrated. Of course the parody within the
conference has been questioned at times this year, but such intraconference
parody is surely a sign that CCHA teams are of
comparable talent, and that with wins such as Michigan's, and the
physics-defying saves of USA's Junior World Cup starting goalie
Al Montoya this past weekend, CCHA teams are comparable in talent
to any conference. For if teams of the CCHA really are comparable
to Michigan, it would be unwise to consider that conference anything
less than one of the two best in the nation. However, I assume that
many will continue to cry that the CCHA is not a formidable antagonist
of conferences like the WCHA, and until we see the member's of 2004's
frozen four... none of us will know. However, do remember that the
CCHA has sent more teams to the frozen four in the past decade (eleven)
than ANY "western" conference, and that if frozen fours
do not matter,... ncaa championships do. Michigan has the MOST ncaa
championships (nine) as well. I certainly expect these trends to
UMD is first
in the WCHA, playing some of the best hockey in the country right
now, beat a solid Gopher team and can’t bypass the Sioux in
the rankings??? Isn’t it strange how UMD leads North Dakota
in the WCHA but not in these rankings. I guess tradition has more
weight than the way a team plays in the national rankings.
To Jon in Ohio.
To clear one misprint, Miami might have been leading the CCHA, but
UMD and ND were tied going into this weekend.
And in my view I think that UMD should have been ranked higher than
Michigan considering the teams they beat, and the conferences they
are leading. Minnesota is way better than Miami, and the WCHA is
the toughest league in the NCAA. I also think that UMD should be
ahead of ND, but I also see how they are still in second. Look at
the teams they have played and beat. They have had some bad ties
but no real bad losses. Losing to Wisconsin is something that not
to be ashamed of, they are an excellent team this year. UMD hold
their fate in their own hands. Going to CC this weekend they need
a sweep to stay atop the WCHA. They then come back to Duluth for
a series against ND, then travel to Madison to close out the regular
season. Now I am not going to say they sweep every series (would
be very nice), but they are going to win a majority of the games,
and that should prove to everybody how good of a team they are.
So for hockey fans blasting ND, look no further to the weekend of
the 27th and 28th to see if they are for real and to see how well
UMD does play.
Mike, Duluth, MN
There may be
a lot of disagreement regarding various positions in the poll. However,
at the present time, there should be no question that Boston College
is # 1. I am just having trouble understanding why it did not occur
sooner, especially after they split a series on the road at # 2
North Dakota. A split under those circumstances should have elevated
Boston College to their rightful place at # 1several weeks ago.
In addition, BC beat # 3 Michigan in Detroit. As if that was not
enough, they played the last few weeks without one of their best
players and still won the Beanpot. How could anyone else be # 1?
As a BC student
and Red Sox fan, I ask you to please refrain from further comparisons
between the Eagles and the Yankees. We're way better than they are.
they play a majority of their games on Olympic-sized sheets, it’s
understandable that Minnesota would have trouble on the Boston Garden-like
ice surface at the DECC. However, there can be only reason that
a team of Minnesota’s reputed caliber lost two games in such
convincing fashion: UMD is a very good team. It is a mystery why
UND has UMD’s rightful #2 spot. The series in two weeks should
Like UND, Maine
and Minnesota have not been impressive of late and may be ranked
too high. One of the best things about college hockey is there are
no dynasties. The power shift is on …
Every week I
come to the conclusion that your polls don't conform to identical
trends of other polls, which I find refreshing. I think you go out
on a different limb and give credit to teams that have a lower profile
but are successful in their own right, especially within the ECAC.
Thanks for saying Colgate is best in their league but as their biggest
fan, even I am not so convinced - on paper, anyway.
I agree with
Paul. Please do not make comparisons between the Eagles and Yankees.
While dated a better comparison would have been Kurt [sic]
Schilling signing with the Sox. I also agree with every other college
hockey fan (except maybe fans that live in North Dakota or work
for INCH) that the Sioux should not be in ranked 2nd I mean c'mon
2-4-1 in the last seven!?!?!
Boston College 2005
I would like
to know how Maine fell when it got 3 out of four points last weekend
and ND split (and lost 3 out of 4) when ME has a better winning
percentage. If ME fell ND should have two.
All these people
that are ripping on the SIOUX for have a 2-4-1 record need to stop
it. One reason why UMD is not ahead of the SIOUX is because the
SIOUX SWEPT them already this year. I also believe that they took
3 out of the 4 games from Minnesota this year too. They also split
with the NUMBER ONE team in the power rankings too. So before you
start badgering them get your facts straight because the POWER RANKINGS
are not just based on their last few games, it's based on the whole
are based on how well a team is playing at the time of the new batch
of rankings. the overall season only affects the rankings by record.
how do u think that a team that is ranked say 20 can move to 15
when they beat someone in the top 5??? exactly like college basketball,
when the number 1 team loses, they don't stay at number one because
they have only lost once, they get moved down a few rankings. get
your facts straight, Nodak does not deserve to be ranked as highly
as it is.
Patrick, INCH's Power Rankings do take into account the entire season.
Otherwise, we wouldn't include each team's record, and we could
simply list which teams swept that weekend. And please – no
more comparisons of college hockey to basketball, ok?
Ryan in ND,
you do make a good argument for North Dakota. But remember the sweep
was one, the last time UMD has lost a game, and two when they were
in a little bit of a funk. Friday was a barnburner 6-5, and Saturday
6-3. UMD is undefeated in the 2004 calendar year (11-0-1). Something
else to think about is the remaining schedule. I believe there is
more pressure on North Dakota because they one, do not have the
WCHA lead and two play weaker teams looking to play spoiler. The
only good series they have left is at Duluth on th 27th and 28th,
other than that they are at MSU and have Michigan Tech at home to
finish the year. A loss in any of the MSU or Tech series seriously
puts them in jepordy to drop in the rankings while UMD is at CC
and at Wisonsin (both ranked teams in the polls and the PairWise)
and a loss doesn't hurt as much.
So a little reminder to ND fans, and players: Come prepared to Duluth.
They are the hottest team right now, they are playing dominant hockey,
they have the WCHA lead, and we all saw what happened to Minnesota.
You caught us in a funk once, don't expect it to happen a second
Mike, Duluth, MN
that when Michigan Lost to BC,they were missing their starting goalie,and
that the backup played great until the last 5 minutes...That was
his first start.
Alex, Monroe, MI
Mike in Duluth,
please don't say that they where in a funk when they played them
because if you say that then I can just say that the Sioux are in
a funk for the last 8 games, when in reality each team that played
the Sioux just outplayed them in every aspect of the game, thats
the bottom line. Also I do believe they are still in First place
in the Pairwise rankings, to me that means they are in pretty good
shape. Also you better tell them Goalies of yours to bring there
A game because the Sioux are going to light them up.
in Austin, MN how could you not take the entire season record into
account when you are doing rankings. If you didn't take the whole
season into account then you would have teams like Anchorage Alaska
(who beat the Gophers) who don't deserve to be in the rankings.
I think you need to learn a little bit more about how College hockey
and the National Polls work before you start talking about them.
who thinks the CCHA can compare to the WCHA please bite your fingers
off...never to type again. The WCHA is the best conference in hockey...has
been for a LONG time. 7 of the Top 12 are WCHA teams. Sure, there
have been some great CCHA teams over the years. But if you think
the likes of Miami or Bowling Green can play neutral site versus
the Top 5 WCHA squad, you are mistaken. Be happy you have college
hockey, but don't put yourself up against the nation's elite conference.
As for the rankings, UND should have dropped, not much but to 3
or 4. The BIGGEST question of the rankings should be why Denver
is #8. Wisconsin and Saint Cloud State are tied for third in the
league point standings, but are both behind MN in the rankings.
Duluth is underrated ...a very deep team. Saint Cloud State has
as tough a schedule down the stretch...@ WI, CC, and @ MN. WCHA
fans now is our time, six games left and a lot of power matchups.
When BC marched
to the title in 2001, it won every tournament it entered. It beat
BU in the Beanpot. And, avenging their losses in each of the previous
3 Frozen Fours, they beat Maine, Michigan, and North Dakota. We've
been to this movie before and I've seen how it ends. Matti is a
4' x 6' wall in goal and the Eagles add a National Championship
to their trophy case. Ever to Excel.
MA, BC '88
What Alex neglected
to mention is that when Michigan played BC, (a) it was pretty close
to a home game for Michigan, (b) the Eagles too were without their
starting goalie, sticking a freshman in whose only previous appearance
was a 3-goal period against Merrimack, and (c) BC was also missing
one of its best scorers. So take that missing ingredient gripe with
a grain of salt. That said... yeah, Michigan still should have leapfrogged
North Dakota. ND is all but reeling, and the only way they ought
to be up at #2 again is if they roll through Duluth.
is certainly not a two horse conference, although the overall records
don't look too great, it's because of the intra-conference bashing
going on. In January, last place Northeastern smoked B.C. 3-0! Just
look at their collective record against teams outside of Hockey
East (54-28-13) and I think its safe to say that B.C. and Maine
are not the only ones that carry the Hockey East flag. In fact,
only one team has a losing record against teams outside of Hockey
East and that's UMass Lowell. I still think its safe to say Hockey
East is and will continue to be College Hockey's strongest conference.
(We've had a representive in the National Championship for the last
Dave in Ann
Arbor, If there's one thing that drives me up the wall, it's people
in the CCHA that think thier conference is comparable to the WCHA.
So America, Canada, the world, let's be honest with eachother the
WCHA has seven teams in the top fifteen, and the CCHA has three
in the top fifteen, you do the math. I could talk about WCHA vs.
CCHA games this year, but I think the polls are self explainatory.
Also Dave, how many of those nine Michigan championships have come
in the last forty years, three. So quit bragging about your nine
championship dominance of the NCAA, and lets talk about what's relevant
Jimmy, Salt Lake City, Utah
Let me pose
the question of the day. I keep hearing about WCHA dominance. How
much more dominating is the WCHA dompared to Hockey East. The head-to-head
records are inconclusive, despite the fact that the interconference
games were played largely on WCHA home ice or neutral sites. I understand
that 7 WCHA teams are ranked versus 4 HEA teams, but Providence
could just as easily be in the top 15 as Colorado College or Denver,
both of whom played cupcake non-conference opponents.
The WCHA has
to be considered the best conference with a 50-18-9 (.708) record
against non-conference foes. In addition WCHA has won three out
of the last four national championships!! Oh and that whole east
coast bias comes into play for the rankings.
03, Colorado Springs, CO
Doug in Boston,
you may have had a representive in the National Championship for
the last 7 years but out of them 7 there were 5 WCHA teams there
playing for a National Championship and 4 of them won it. Also the
only 2 teams from the Hockey East acutally won it all. You can not
really compare the Hockey East or any other conference for that
matter to the WCHA because the WCHA is the strongest and will always
be the strongest conference in college hockey.
in Boston's comments...
You stated that Maine & Minnesota have begun falling off...
I don't understand the Minnesota part, sure they just got swept
at Duluth (First place team in the WCHA) but the prior week they
swept Wisconsin and the week before split with North Dakota in a
series that they could have swept! I'm a big fan of our hockey out
east bud, but open your eyes when you say these things and give
Minnesota credit for winning the past two National Championships
against Hockey East opponents (Maine & New Hampshire)... I'd
say they are as close to a dynasty as College hockey has seen in
a long time. I also hate to say it but the WCHA has got to be the
toughest conference right now... their 7th place team could give
our three best teams a scare I'm certain. It's going to be fun,
may the best team win and it won't be North Dakota for they are
circling the drain with there goalie problems!
Mike, Worcester, Mass.
How about the
UMD Bulldogs. They are the hottest team in the country, but they
are not recieving enough credit. It's funny how they are number
on in the WCHA, ahead of North Dakota, but they are in forth place.
Oh ya, last weekend they did season sweep the defending national
champ Gophers, who should be out of the top ten. On top of it all
they are in the toughest division in the country. Watch out North
Dakota and Boston College. Go Bulldogs!
Just to add
to Jimmy's argument about the WCHA vs CCHA, ND and MN have won 10
of the last 30 championships. That is 1/3 going to only 2 teams.
If you check the strength of schedule you will see that 1-10 are
WCHA teams then it moves to Hockey East teams. Just a couple of
facts to back up the WCHA being the toughest league to play in.
I don't think
Hockey East is a two-horse conference. Look at the other teams such
as Providence, B.U., Massachusetts, UMass Lowell, and UNH. All those
teams were either ranked at certain points during the year, or still
are ranked. There are a ton of good hockey teams in the East, and
unfortunately conference play kills their records. I believe Providence
recently in non-conference play was 8-1-1, and Umass Lowell was
ranked for a time before the forfeits. I'm not saying they are the
calibur of Maine and B.C., but they are still very good. Being a
UMaine student, I have had the opportunity to see alot of them play,
and they are good.
I do not question
the power rankings and I like counting every game of the season
in the rankings. Defeating a number one ranked team in October should
count as high as doing it in February. Remember, two time defending
NCAA Champion Minnesota opened the WCHA schedule against UM-Duluth
at home on Oct 24-25 and UMD swept. Those dogs did the same in Duluth
on Feb 13-14 when Minnesota was ranked lower (#5).
The two most impressive teams in the WCHA this year are UM-Duluth
and Wisconsin. Look at last years standings to verify these two
resurrections. What a finish it will be!!! UMD will play North Dakota
next and finish at Wisconsin. If Wisconsin thinks they have "arrived",
let's see how you handle the Bulldogs at home. If you win, do you
think you are good enough to duplicate your 3-2 win over Michigan
in the NCAA tournament?....my bet is, neither one of these two teams
can beat Michigan....perhaps that job will be left to North Dakota.
Jerry J., Shoreview, MN (home of Miracles and the late Herb
most of the complaints concerning the rankings. What I do not understand
is how 75% of you can argue the power rankings when I can't figure
out how you graduated from high school. Go back to eighth grade
and learn English grammar and spelling. You're giving hockey fans
a bad name. As for hockey, all Colgate and Michigan fans should
be hoping for a playoff rematch so that Colgate might avenge the
atrocity they suffered at the hands of the refs in 2000.
this to a friend
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