Sunday, May 11, 2008

A few items

  • Mark Johnson was recently featured on "Wisconsin Reflections". Good stuff; you should check it out. Mike Eaves joins Johnson partway through the program.

  • Not sure how I missed this, but a couple of weeks ago, had a nice write-up of Erika Lawler.
While on the subject of hockey, let’s discuss the achievements of Erika Lawler of Fitchburg, Cushing Academy and the University of Wisconsin. Standing five-foot nothing, Erika would have to be considered the Nathan Gerbe of women’s hockey. Ten days ago, Erika was a key member of the U.S. women’s hockey team, which defeated arch-rival Canada 4-3 in Harbin, China, to bring the World Cup back to America.

This was one of the greatest upsets in women’s hockey in recent years. The ladies from north of the border had stopped the Americans in nine of the last 10 World Cup events. So this was a big deal. Playing five games in the tournament, the U.S. team had to fight back from the brink of disaster after a defeat by a good Finnish squad. Isn’t it rather ironic that Erika Lawler from Fitchburg, which has such a large Finnish population, would meet Finland in this type of international competition?

Erika’s father, Kevin, told me that because of her exceptional speed on the ice, she was an integral part of the United States’ power play teams and their penalty killing teams, which are such a vital part of any hockey team’s victories. The chief referee insisted on calling numerous penalties in the championship contest to keep control, so Erika found herself on the ice for extended periods of time.

Her exceptional skating ability and her amazing endurance are the qualities which have made Erika Lawler such a superstar. In the last two years, Erika has played on an NCAA national championship squad for the Badgers of Wisconsin, and been an integral member of a World Championship squad in international hockey. Hope to see the diminutive dynamo representing the United States in Vancouver, Canada, at the Olympics in 2010. A gold medal there would put Erika in some real elite company; Mia Hamm and you tell me who else.

  • From today's WSJ: Head and assistant coaches' salaries, scholarships, recruiting funds, and travel funds for the men's and women's hockey programs.
Mike Eaves $229,511
Mark Osiecki $97,926
Kevin Patrick $85,285
recruiting $82,526
scholarships $245,303
travel $273,380

Mark Johnson $140,000
Tracy Cornell $28,454
Dan Koch $47,767
scholarships $232,048
recruiting $36,757
travel $206,082

  • HIW has a list of Badger recruits that includes the other schools that each recruit was considering before deciding to be a Badger, and DPlaya shares some of his thoughts. (Props to DP for taking the time to compile this list.)