September 29, 2005
Hockey East Coaches Favor BC in Tight Race

Hockey East
Preseason Poll

Coaches Poll
1. Boston College (2), 82
2. New Hampshire (4), 79
t-3. Maine (2), 71
t-3. UMass Lowell, 71
5. Boston University (2), 67
6. Vermont, 47
7. Massachusetts, 42
8. Providence, 33
9. Northeastern, 30
10. Merrimack, 18

First place votes in parentheses, followed by total points.

With three coaching changes and a new team, there are a lot of unknowns this season in Hockey East – and the preseason coaches' poll reflects that uncertainty.

Four teams received first-place votes and five ranked within 15 points of each other at the top of the conference when the coaches' ballots were tallied. The poll, released Thursday at the conference's media day, is led by Boston College, with New Hampshire following close behind.

Maine and UMass Lowell tied for third, while Boston University received two first-place votes and landed fifth in the poll.

Vermont, the league's 2005-06 newcomer, stands sixth in the preseason. Massachusetts is seventh and the three schools with new coaches – Providence, Northeastern and Merrimack – round out the poll.

The league also honored NESN broadcaster Eric Frede at media day with the Joe Concannon Hockey East Media Award, which is given annually to a member of the media who has demonstrated a superior body of work in covering and promoting Hockey East over an extended period.