It’s Tuesday. And I actually have a blog! Hooray!
And with that, I have news: The 2012-13 WCHA Media Poll will be released Wednesday.
It’s my first-ever serious college media poll, so I was excited to vote – despite the fact that preseason polls are essentially meaningless, it’s fun to see what the experts think. It’s also fun to see how wrong they will be at the end of the season.
Now, I’m using the term “experts” loosely here when I refer to myself. I’m new to the WCHA hockey beat, so I’m not as familiar with the league this season as most of the media members who cover the league.
That being said, I was glad to get the opportunity to vote this year. Bruce Ciskie, the voice of the UMD Bulldogs, graciously sent me a ballot and dealt with my questions as the rookie on the beat.
I did a lot of homework before voting, so I am as confident with my picks as I can be as a first-year guy who didn’t get a chance to watch many college hockey games last season (Central Illinois isn’t exactly a college hockey hotbed).
All that being said, I submit for your consideration my picks for the WCHA preseason media poll. Feel free to tell me what I missed, who I should look out for and what YOU think in the comments:
Predicted order of finish
2. North Dakota
5. Michigan Tech
6. St. Cloud State
8. Nebraska Omaha
9. Colorado College
10. Bemidji State
11. Minnesota State
12. Alaska Anchorage
Player of the Year: Nick Bjugstad, Minnesota
Rookie of the Year: Nic Kerdiles, Wisconsin
All-conference: Bjugstad (F, Minnesota)
Mike Seidel (F, UMD)
Danny Krist (F, North Dakota)
Joey LaLeggia (D, Denver)
Nate Schmidt (D, Minnesota)
Josh Thorimbert (G, Colorado College)
And also for your reference, here are a few ballots from other league voters. You can see there’s not much argument over the top teams:
Kevin Pates, Duluth News Tribune
Bruce Ciske, Red Rock Radio (UMD)
Shane Frederick, Mankato Free Press
Chris Dilks, Western College Hockey
Joe Paisley, USCHO/Colorado College
-In other news, the BSU women’s team has been selected sixth out of eight teams by the WCHA coaches. Defending national champs Minnesota was picked first and runners-up Wisconsin second. The Beavers play their annual Green and White Scrimmage Friday before opening the season at Providence Oct. 6-7.
-Joe Paisley also posted the CBS College Sports Network’s college hockey schedule on his blog. Much like the NBC sports schedule released a few weeks ago, it’s light on the WCHA.
Wait, scratch that: It HATES the WCHA. There are absolutely zero current WCHA teams on the schedule.
However! Future WCHA member (and current national runner-up) Ferris State makes not one but TWO appearances on the channel next year: Jan. 25 at Notre Dame and March 1 at Michigan. Also on the schedule, for reasons I haven’t been able to determine, is another future WCHA member, Alaska-Fairbanks, at Notre Dame Jan. 19.
Like most of the country, CBS loves itself some Notre Dame. The Irish will end up making six appearances on the channel. Michigan will also be seen a whole lot, making four appearances.
So, essentially, CBS has come to the conclusion that sports fans aren’t already tired of seeing every single Notre Dame and Michigan football game on television, and that they absolutely NEED to see more of America’s two favorite teams on the hockey rink, too. Makes perfect sense.
ALBUM OF THE WEEK
-This has nothing to do with hockey, or sports, but I would highly recommend listening to Silver Age by Bob Molud (of Hüsker Dü fame). You can stream it at Rolling Stone to figure out if it’s the kind of thing you’d be into, but I hope it is.