Thursday, April 2, 2009

Looking forward to next season...

Over on USCHO, Icebadger is once again doing an outstanding job of keeping track of the Badger Men's 2009/10 schedule as it takes shape. You can find this spreadsheet here for future reference, though we'll be updating the blog here as he updates things there to pass on the info.

I get pretty excited for the schedule to be released. I really look forward to next season, as I ramp my hopes up really high and its a great way to dispel the disappointment of a season that ended not even two weeks previous. Once the Badger Men's schedule comes out, I then look forward to the GB Gamblers schedule and mix the Women's schedule in for good measure (though they often play at home the same weekends as the Men) and I create a hockey matrix. I'll throw in the Rockford IceHogs and Chicago Blackhawks too. So the off season is still pretty exciting for me. Coach Eaves helps out in this because you never know what is up his sleeve w/ recruits and what not.

Anyway, to the actual point of this post, when I was looking over Icebadger's spreadsheet, the breakdown of conference games caught my attention. Its as follows:

Single Home Series: Denver & UAA
Single Road Series: North Dakota and Duluth
Both: minnesota, CC, Mankato, St. Cloud and Tech

Non-con: vs New Hampshire, Michigan (@ Camp Randall), Showdown & to lower Michigan for the Showcase

Though team and season previews are months away, depending upon more early departures, Denver, North Dakota and Duluth are three teams I think will finish in the top half of the WCHA w/ the Badgers next season. Based on that "logic" (very loosely used) the Badgers "might" have an easier WCHA schedule next season. No game in the WCHA is actually easy, but I don't see Mankato or Tech improving much, and I see CC taking a step back w/ out Rau, Bachman and Connelly.

Just some early speculation to pass the time.

Might have to make the trip to the DUMP for one last asbestos filled hockey weekend in Duluth.