Tuesday, March 10, 2009

So...Crandall did de-commit

I'm not sure why it took so long, probably because the Madison newspapers online articles are so dis-organized, but I guess Baggot talked to Crandall and as had been rumored, he is not coming to Wisconsin.

As I have noted in previous blog posts, this should surprise absolutely no one. Crandall has put up some of the worst numbers in the history of the USHL. He is currently rocking a goals against average over 5 and has a .859 save percentage. While I disagree at looking at a goalies GAA to determine how good he is, I do feel that save % is a faily good indicator. Right now, Crandall is dead last in the league for goalies in save percentage compared to other goalies who have played more than 20 games in the league this season.

The fact of the matter is that Crandall has simply been brutal so far in the USHL and I'm not sure if he's going to snap out of it. I've probably defended him more on the internet than any other Badger fan out there but at some point you just have to cut your losses and move on. Right now it seems as if Crandall has Chuck Knoblock syndrome when he was great and all of a sudden couldn't throw the ball from second base to first. Crandall was awesome, even making some USA National squads, and all of a sudden, he simply cannot stop the rubber.

So where do we move from here? Next season we will enter with two junior goaltenders battling for ice time with incumbent Scott Gudmandson and incoming transfer Brett Bennett from the Indiana Ice of the USHL and formerly the Boston University Terriers. While we should be solid with those two in the nets for two seasons, we need to bring along another goaltender that will be ready to take over when they leave. Wisconsin has typically run a freshman/junior or a sophomore/senior combo and it has worked out great. Obviously things have changed.

The popular name remains to be Mike Johnson. I spoke with him again and this is what he had to say about the possibility of him going to Wisconsin, "I doubt it, they have not shown any interest in me." I'm still not going to totally rule out the option of Mike Johnson. He has said that he is willing to go back to the USHL for a season if needed. Would he walk on for his freshman season with a full scholarship for the last 3 seasons knowing he's going to be the man? Who knows at this point. It's not necessary that Wisconsin brings in a goalie that they feel can take over in a few years for the fall of 2009. What can't happen is them starting a freshman goaltender when Bennett and Gudmandson leave in 2 seasons.

Edit: I didn't notice this earlier but it looks like Chris at WCH had this up this afternoon as well. I'm assuming all the Eaves haters are going to keep coming out of the woodworks.