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Men's Hockey Update-Top 25 Rankings

Matt Garver on Friday, 22 January 2010. Posted in Athletics

The Men's Hockey team has gone 3-1 in conference play since my last blog.  Unfortunately the loss came to UCONN who had only won 2 games on the season up to that point.  The Tigers 13 game unbeaten streak in conference play came to an end as a result of the loss.  The night before they beat UCONN and took two games on the road from Holy Cross the weekend before.

The Tigers are now 12-9-1 on the season and are positioned very nicely in the AHA.  They are currently in 2nd place in conference play with a 12-3-1 record and have 4 games in hand on first place Air Force and third place Mercyhurst.  I believe this conference is a 3 team conference; meaning that the AHA will be represented by RIT, Air Force or Mercyhurst in the NCAA tournament.  The initial goal should be to win the conference to ensure that RIT does not play one of these two teams in the semifinals of the conference tournament.  This will force Air Force and Mercyhurst to play in the semifinals, assuming they make it that far, and will eliminate one of those teams.  I believe that is exactly what will happen, RIT will win the conference outright.  The remaining schedule really is not that difficult, with 8 games against teams in the lower half of the conference.  They have Air Force and Canisius at home to end the regular season.  They need to keep winning because having those 4 games in hand is great, but you have to win those games or they do you no good.  This is the year that RIT makes their first NCAA appearance, that is my bold prediction for the week.

I started the GRS College Hockey Top 25 earlier this year and after about 2 months of rankings I like it about as much as the BCS, not very much.  Mathematical formulas are great and all, however, sometimes humans know more about the details of situations than the numbers do.  I am going to continue to use the GRS as a guide for myself, however, I am taking over the rankings.  I have watched the majority of these teams play at this point in time and feel comfortable making the tough decisions from a knowledgable hockey point of view.  

With that being said, the biggest surprise in the last two weekends of college hockey was Robert Morris taking two games from then #1 Miami of Ohio.  One of the wins was at Steve Cady Arena in Oxford, Ohio.  The Redhawks (Miami) outshot the Colonials (Robert Morris) 79 to 39 over the two game span.  This is proof that the team that has a hot goalie is the team that will win the NCAA Championship. 

RIT has not climbed into my top 25 just yet, solely because of the loss to UCONN last saturday night in Storrs, CT.  Assuming the Tigers take both games this weekend when they head to A.I.C., they will enter my top 25 once again.  The game tonight is not televised in Rochester but you can listen at  RIT will return to Ritter Arena next weekend against Bentley.  Come check out the only Division I sport in Rochester next weekend, puck drops at 7:05.

Division I College Hockey Top 25

1.  Denver                                                            14-5-3
2.  Minnesota-Duluth                                         16-7-1
3.  Miami of Ohio                                                15-4-5
4.  Ferris State                                                    16-6-2
5.  Michigan State                                               15-7-4
6.  Wisconsin                                                       13-6-3
7.  North Dakota                                                  12-7-5
8.  Colorado College                                          13-8-3
9.  Boston College                                              12-6-2
10. Union                                                              13-4-5
11. UMASS-Amherst                                           14-8
12. Yale                                                                 10-4-3
13. Cornell                                                            9-4-3
14. St. Cloud State                                              14-7-3
15. Bemidji State                                                 15-5-2
16. Lake Superior                                                14-8-4
17. Vermont                                                          11-7-2
18. Alaska                                                             10-7-5
19. Michigan                                                         13-10-1
20. UMASS-Lowell                                               12-9-2
21. Quinnipiac                                                      13-9-1
22. New Hampshire                                            10-7-4
23. Minnesota                                                       12-10-2
24. Maine                                                               11-9-2
25. Northern Michigan                                         10-8-6

Week of January 18, 2010