Penn State has formally introduced college hockey at the Division I level to start in 2012. This is not a shock to this writer and it brings many good things. As commented on in my “three truths” piece earlier in the week, the Nittany Lions would bring new rivalries to the sport with other Big Ten schools (PSU-Michigan State, PSU-Ohio State, PSU-Minnesota, PSU-Wisconsin to name a few).
But, for you WCHA fans who are crowing about what’ll happen to the WCHA…here I am with an answer. The “ultimate new look” WCHA would have ten teams from UND, CC, Denver, Alaska-Anchorage, Michigan Tech, Minnesota-Duluth, Minnesota State-Mankato, St Cloud State, Nebraska-Omaha, and Bemidji State. You could also see the “ultimate new look” playoff format go back to the way it was up until the end of last season with the 5 first round winners advancing. Next question: where would the championship series be played? That could go to a few venues from St Paul to the Pepsi Center in Denver to even campus arenas on a rotating basis.
Should Penn State join either the WCHA or CCHA (which I don’t see happening according to Big Ten rules “allowing for the creation of a Big Ten conference with six schools participating in any sport), that’d throw college hockey into limbo as well with all sorts of factors from money to playoff formats and beyond.
The best choice, as critical as I was to the Big Ten earlier in the week, would be to form a Big Ten hockey conference and have the Big Six play each other more often. This would bring more TVs to your television network and in turn bring about new revenues overall. One factor I haven’t talked about yet was the Frozen Fours in Pennsylvania in 2013 and 2014. Penn State would probably be the host school for both Pittsburgh and Philadelphia’s championship events, and there’s nothing wrong with that.
In closing, I welcome Penn State to college hockey and sincerely hope that they play up to the standards that NCAA hockey fans expect.
If you’d like to get in touch with the Golden Gopher Hockey Examiner, please do! Email Disch61@hotmail.com or leave a comment here on the website. To be emailed any time i post an article, click Subscribe! You can also find the GG Puck Examiner on Facebook by searching “Minnesota Golden Gophers Hockey Examiner” from the top of any Facebook page.
Until next time, I’ll see you at the rink!