Monday, August 8, 2011

Three Stars: August 1-7

3. Hey Hockey Valley, Get Ready to 'Roar into the Future!'

Joe Battista gets his pump on with glowing words about Guy Gadowsky, Josh Brandwene, the four assistants on their respective staffs, Bill Downey, the new men's hockey SID and pretty much anyone else he could fit into a column of reasonable length. He's thrilled to get to the future, and why shouldn't he be with the people we have around both programs?

Clearly though, Battista's not an avid reader. If this blog leaves one lasting contribution to Penn State hockey, let it be the torpedoing of the 1946 myth.

One more thing: here's a challenge. Find someone saying something bad about Gadowsky on the internet. I bet you can't, and that says a lot in this day and age. My Google Alert (which sends Google hits to my email and has certainly helped with a post or two) reads "Guy Gadowsky," not "Guy Gadowsky + rad + bodacious" and I have yet to see anything.

My, how things have changed since the early 90s.

The closest thing has been a Twitter argument where the other side believed Mark Johnson would've been a better hire. And it's not like the other side said anything bad about Gadowsky, so...doesn't count.

2. Q&A: Men's hockey coach ready to start // Hockey gift endows goaltender, names coach's office // Former Icer Brandwene picked to lead women's ice hockey
(Nittany Lion Club Newsletter)

Admittedly, I didn't get around to reading the summer issue of the NLC Newsletter until this week, so it came as a little bit of a shock when I found three topical articles contained within. They probably don't include much you haven't read before (particularly the last two, on the John and Karen Davis donation and the Josh Brandwene hire, which borrow heavily from the original press releases), but hey, let me know if you find something that covers tons of new ground in August.

1. 2011 season preview: Looking at the CHA (Part 1 of 2)

Part 2 was promised "tomorrow," and "tomorrow" was last Wednesday, so you'll just have to survive on Part 1 for now. Anyway, get to know (half of) our future women's conference a year earlier than you need to. You'll thank me later. And actually, it may come in handy before the 2012-2013 season, since the Lady Icers open this season's ambitious schedule September 23rd at Robert Morris.

Best of the Rest

Well-rounded forward chooses PSU
(Lions 247)

Your money quote, from subject of the article Kenny Brooks:
“At first we’re all going to be young guys, so we all are going to have to work hard. But by the time I leave, I expect us to be competing with all of the top schools in the Big Ten and nationally as well. Hopefully we will be from the start, you can never really tell, and with the great coaching staff in place you never know what they can do.”
Winter Classic week full of possibilities
(Camden Courier-Post)

Fresh non-committal words concerning the in-negotiation outdoor game January 4th against NCAA Division III Neumann University, summarized nicely by:
Flyers president Peter Luukko, the driving force behind Philadelphia's bid for the Winter Classic, confirmed Tuesday night that games featuring the American Hockey League's Adirondack Phantoms and Penn State University men's hockey team are in the works.

"Those are both very good possibilities,' " Luukko said, adding, "There is a cost associated with keeping (the rink) up a couple days."
I'm equally excited for the idea of Holland Oates performing at the Winter Classic. As long as Peter Gabriel is there too (It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia reference).

Compton Family Ice Arena

Notre Dame's page containing all things related to their in-progress facility. Including a live look at the construction. Not bad, guys.

Huskies add to coaching staff
(St. Cloud Times)

Another week, another unemployed former Head Coach Candidate finds work. This time, it's former Wayne State women's boss Jim Fetter, who rudely had his program cancelled out from under him in May.

CCHA, WCHA talk merger
(Bowling Green Sentinel-Tribune)

Remember that thing everyone assumed wouldn't happen? Yeah, well it might.

Even with this news, it's still pretty easy to see the finish line:
  • Notre Dame will pick a conference - most likely the NCHC or Hockey East - by August 15th (reinforced in the article). Western Michigan will beg to be allowed to join, citing the Andy Murray hire and undoubtedly a Powerpoint presentation.
  • The CCHA and WCHA schools not locked into the Big Ten, the NCHC or wherever ND and WMU go will merge into one conference.
  • Or they won't. The WCHA, which has already poached Northern Michigan from the CCHA and is eyeing Alaska as well, would be good to go with at least six teams, possibly adding potential new program Minnesota State-Moorhead later, should MSUM get paid.
  • The CCHA would need to add the Four for 18 club (Mercyhurst, Canisius, Niagara, Robert Morris) from Atlantic Hockey to survive without a merger. Yeah, I just made that up. Fear me.
  • In non-merger scenario, AHA would still have eight teams and wouldn't need to do anything.
  • Alabama-Huntsville remains completely screwed.

Versus Nears Deal to Televise College Hockey
(College Hockey News)

Apparently, Western Michigan is the only entity waiting on Notre Dame.
The Versus package will not be a national deal, per se. It was not negotiated with College Hockey Inc. or the Hockey Commissioners Association. That is impossible given all of the deals conferences have separate Regional Sports Networks (RSNs) and teams have with other local channels.

But Versus is intending to reach agreement with all five current Division I leagues to air games on Friday or Saturday nights. Some of those deals have already been finalized. Versus is expected to make an announcement of its broadcast package once all of the deals have been completed.
Oh Pegula

Yes, someone really wrote a poem about Terry Pegula. I didn't make it very far before I got embarrassed for the guy (the author, not Pegula) and stopped.

Who's the loser in the middle not wearing a cartoon animal costume?

Rescheduling of 'Furry' convention in Pittsburgh points to Penguins hosting 2012 NHL Draft
(The Hockey News)

THN's Ryan Kennedy observed that the rescheduling of an event at Pittsburgh's convention center might mean that the 2012 NHL Entry Draft is coming to the Consol Energy Center. As exciting as the idea of the first Penn State draft pick possibly hearing his name called in Pennsylvania is, for now the more interesting story is what was moved.
The city required the use of its convention center, which had already been booked for June 21 to 24 by Anthrocon, an annual gathering of Furries.
"Furries?" for people who enjoy dressing up in mascot-style costumes, emulating animals.
Oh, okay. Well, at least Anthrocon was bumped up instead of back. So your teddy bear collection is presumably safe from overanxious plushophiles (not that far of a reach, people).

2011 Junior Evaluation Camp Central

I'm not going to go huge on the World Junior Championships until actual Penn Staters are involved. For now, the essential knowledge is that 28 current or committed college players are presently among the 44 total at the USA Hockey Junior Evaluation Camp as they attempt to make the USA U20 team for the 2012 WJC tournament - held December 26, 2011 through January 5, 2012. The Big Ten is represented by Jon Merrill (Michigan), Nick Bjugstad and Justin Holl (Minnesota) and Mike Mersch (Wisconsin). Also of note: PSU coaching finalist Scott Sandelin is an assistant on the WJC team. Follow along with the camp and related exhibition games (all of which runs through the 13th) at the link.

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