Small Sample Size-Itis

Being dissatisfied with the way some of my predictions have gone so far, I am going to take a flyer on guesswork this week. There has been enough observable hockey to make a few conclusions: New Hampshire, Brown, Yale, and Providence will unfortunately all lose. But there are also a number of series that will provide a considerable amount of information about teams that are still sitting in the cloud of significant unknowns.  UW/BSU is obviously the most key of these (obviously a high scoring game favors the Badgers and vice versa). BC/Cornell, BU/Northeastern, and to a lesser extent Princeton/Mercyhurst are all important series.’Who is Cornell’ is the question we ask every year. It should also be clear that I think despite their rough last few games, BC suffered from the single elimination play-off structure primarily. The Huskies are yet again playing rope-a-dope with the universe, and Princeton has the potential to make noise in the ECAC this year but we’ll see how they match up out of conference.  Stay tuned.

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ECAC: Part Two

Even more impressionistic than the previous post because I got home from work unexpectedly late today. More detailed exposition will definitely follow. I am also planning a post on ‘most interesting/unexpected majors among NCAA hockey players.’

Princeton‘s recruiting class is pretty damn impressive for an Ivy that is not Harvard. There is almost no way QU picks up another comparably successful season after graduating Laden and of course the coaching-related debacle. They will not be bad, but those heights are probably out of reach. RPI is definitely in the running for best hockey names 2016 but they were outscored by almost two goals a game last year and while bringing in a TON of recruits could bring change, that change may well take more than one season to arrive. Speaking of being outscored by two goals a game, Union has at the very least probably picked up some goaltending but otherwise not a standout first-year class. SLU who, bless them, uses the term ‘first-year’ on the roster, is lucky to be bringing back most of its core from a campaign that saw them ranked last season, because the new players don’t seem top-shelf.  Finally, Yale has recruits who are disgustingly amazing in all areas except, like, U-18 national hockey experience. Yes this is true of all the Ivies. See my proposed post on college majors. A solid, middle of the pack team in every way except offense (including the power play), expect more of the same with possibly some upperclass uptick among the juniors.