Thursday, November 11, 2010

What does it take...

As you know PSU is moving their club hockey team up to division one hockey after one of their wealthy alumni Terrence M. and Kim Pegula decided to give Penn State University 88 million dollars to start a hockey program and build a new hockey arena on campus. Good for them, I am excited for them. Comments oozing with sarcasm.
Thank you Terry --- There's been some discussion in the Penn State community about how successful our men's hockey team will ultimately be. Some (myself) feel like we're going to have everything in place to be a top program, while others point to the men's basketball program as evidence of Penn State's ability to run a high-profile program that isn't football.
There is a school of thought that I have seen a few places on the internet where I have read comments by PSU hockey fans that think they are just going to build a brand new hockey arena, start a hockey program then they are going to become this division one power house hockey team. It doesn’t work like that. That line of thinking is comparable to saying I am starting a division one football program, I want to play the power house teams in the south like FSU, Miami, Georgia, Alabama, beat them on the football field and oh yeah, I am going to compete for a SEC title right out of the blocks. First thing I would ask you, "is what are you smoking?"

Seriously folks, it takes many seasons to build a successful division one hockey team. To answer the comment “We're sorry that Joe Battista didn't abandon his life's work and tell the guy with $88 million to stick it so you could keep playing Michigan Tech and St. Cloud State .” The comments are clueless and lack merit, Oh yeah! In case you forgot; Michigan Tech has more historical significance than you think; they have actually won a couple of NCAA titles during the 1970’s and they gave us the awesome/great Michigan Tech pep band and the MacNaughton Cup. SCSU has left a pretty big mark on college hockey as well and just look around the NHL, you will see many great SCSU alum playing in the NHL. Same thing with new member Bemidji State they have actually gone to the NCAA tourney and made the Frozen Four.

I think this type of thinking is ridiculous; there are established college hockey programs and Big Ten Schools like Minnesota with five NCAA division one hockey titles struggling to make the WCHA Final Five and or make the NCAA hockey tourney. One can make the argument that Minnesota has all the advantages, they have a great television deal with FSN, they have a big beautiful hockey arena, a great metro area with many blue chip hockey recruits sitting right in their back yard and they are struggling to make the NCAA hockey tourney.

What makes people think in the non hockey state of Pennsylvania they are going make it to the top? Where the hell are you going to recruit you players from? The East Coast is already saturated with great hockey teams recruiting for hockey recruits. Do PSU fans think they are going compete with a the BU and B.C. hockey teams for recruits? Traditional hockey powers like DU, UND, UW UMN, and Michigan have trouble at times competing with B.C. and BU. I don’t want to hear the argument that Cindy Crosby has put PA on the map and that is going to benefit the PSU hockey team.

In conclusion I don’t blame college hockey fans for be a little surly when it comes to the discussion of a Big Ten Hockey Conference. We have survived for a very long time without having a BTHC. I don’t like the concept of having a BTHC because I think it’s going to be a death sentence for unstable division one hockey programs. The WCHA will fine but what about the CCHA? How are LSSU, BGSU, WMU and a few other hockey teams going to be able to survive if you take the big money maker teams away from their league? We were told that a few of these teams were on life support and that was the reason why the CCHA couldn’t add UAH.

Is killing college hockey in its present form that important to the Big Ten so the BTN can show a few more hockey game on television? What’s preventing them from doing that now? I think when it’s all said and done that hockey people need to discuss this issue and not make a bunch of rash decision and tell the football cabal needs to get the hell out of the way and STFU.