January 10, 2005
15 Elements We'd Feature in the Ultimate College Hockey Rink

• Ralph Engelstad Arena's leather seats – We don't know if they're made of fine Corinthian leather like the old Chrysler Cordova, but we're partial to the ol' cowhide.

• Agganis Arena's sightlines – At BU they say they built it just like the old Boston Garden – without all those obstructed views.

• Mariucci's concourse murals – Two photos stand out – the giant shot of John Mayasich and the picture of the building's namesake and Steve Martin-lookalike, John Mariucci.

Matthews Arena's side balcony – This same location witnessed the first game in Bruins and Celtics history. Babe Ruth used to hang out here, and after last October, he'd even be welcomed back.

Alfond Arena's end balcony – The overhang at Maine is reminiscent of the signature right-field porch at old Tiger Stadium. A prime location to harangue opposing goaltenders.

• Baker Rink's display of Hobey's portrait and skate – What better way to welcome guests to our rink than this lobby display from Princeton. And even Gretzky could look at the skate and marvel how Hobey could be so good wearing those.

• Bright Hockey Center's old team photos – Yes, those shaggy-haired gentlemen in the shots from the '70s that line Harvard's concourses are today's CEOs.

• Yost Ice Arena's brick facade – Based on the exterior of Michigan's 81-year-old venue, you almost expect the games inside Yost to be played in black-and-white.

• Walker Arena's bell – Cheel Arena has taken its place at Clarkson, but visiting players still hear the ringing in their ears.

• Goggin Ice Arena's standing-room end zones – Many an opposing player has missed a prime scoring opportunity after catching a glimpse of a Miami coed out of the corner of his eye.

• Lynah Rink's pep band – It wouldn't be a dream rink without great tunes. The candy-cane striped folks from Cornell can do the honors, beginning with Oh, Canada.

• Dee Stadium's ice sheet – The former home of the Michigan Tech Huskies still stands hard by the Portage Canal. The building is colder than a Keweenaw Peninsula summer.

• Ingalls Rink's roof – Eero Saarinen – a renowned architect, not a speedy winger – was responsible for Yale's hump-backed roof and its arching, 300-foot backbone affectionately referred to as 'The Whale Tail.'

• DU Arena's press box – Media at the predecessor to Magness Arena sat about 10 rows off the ice, right behind the visitor's bench. The smell of equipment would waft into press row during each line change.

• Kohl Center's neighborhood – What good is a dream rink if it's set in the middle of an asphalt parking lot? There are a host of establishments in Madison more than capable of handling hockey fans' pre- and post-game activities.

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