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Thread: Wisconsin Hockey - 2018 Off-Season - Hope or Despair?

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    Wisconsin Hockey - 2018 Off-Season - Hope or Despair?

    Needed a new thread.

    Posting the picture from Bucky's 5th Quarter showing goal differential. See article HERE

    Last edited by WiscTJK; 03-08-2018 at 07:10 AM.

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    Re: Wisconsin Hockey - 2018 Off-Season - Hope or Despair?

    You nailed the title. The end of the season is still very close, I vote despair, though I understand that is an emotional response and not a objective one at this point.
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    Re: Wisconsin Hockey - 2018 Off-Season - Hope or Despair?

    ...the tough part is they still have Eaves recruits and still have a few Eaves recruits coming in.

    It gets difficult to judge a coaching staff's abilities when in year 3 (next season) the staff will have a team that is half or less of their own guys.

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    Re: Wisconsin Hockey - 2018 Off-Season - Hope or Despair?

    Quote Originally Posted by solovsfett View Post
    ...the tough part is they still have Eaves recruits and still have a few Eaves recruits coming in.

    It gets difficult to judge a coaching staff's abilities when in year 3 (next season) the staff will have a team that is half or less of their own guys.
    I don't put too much stock in the "Eaves" recruits vs. "Tony" recruits, especially going forward. Eligible players for the fall were 15-16 year olds when Tony was hired. Staff had ample time to jettison players and get others. Which they did.

    Adam Rockwood, the current leading playmaker in the nation, Max Gildon, top points frosh D and 4th overall points D in Hockey East. (Gildon had 3 less points than soph. Dante Fabbro while playing on a team that totally collapsed in the second half) Trenton Bliss, top 10 scorer in the USHL, Matt Jurusic, #7 USHL goalie... These guys were all cut loose one way or another. Three of them basically made room for JD Greenway, Sean Dhooghe, and Kyle Hayton so... I don't know, to me, falling back on the "Eaves recruits" thing is kind of a weak argument. Inamoto, Tischke, Frederic, Baker, Malone, are all Eaves guys and they are all good players. This team had more than a dozen guys that will play pro hockey, there was the talent to win. Staff still has to get the most out of whoever is in camp in October and the bottom line is, they just didn't do that this year.

    Word on the street is that it's pretty likely Tischke will be back and it's looking more like Frederic might be back too from what I've heard. A Ranta- Frederic-Weissbach line would have a ton of firepower. And we should have at least 8 D capable of being top 4 guys almost anywhere. Excited for Mersch and Messner to come in as well. These are Burish-type guys with talent that you can really build a culture around. A Mersch-Baker-Messner line would have scary jump to it.


    Also congrats to Wags for signing with the Chicago Wolves. Sounds likely that Linhart, Ustaski, Davison, Hughes will all sign pro deals soon.
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    Re: Wisconsin Hockey - 2018 Off-Season - Hope or Despair?

    Quote Originally Posted by Wisko McBadgerton View Post
    I don't put too much stock in the "Eaves" recruits vs. "Tony" recruits, especially going forward. Eligible players for the fall were 15-16 year olds when Tony was hired. Staff had ample time to jettison players and get others. Which they did.

    Adam Rockwood, the current leading playmaker in the nation, Max Gildon, top points frosh D and 4th overall points D in Hockey East. (Gildon had 3 less points than soph. Dante Fabbro while playing on a team that totally collapsed in the second half) Trenton Bliss, top 10 scorer in the USHL, Matt Jurusic, #7 USHL goalie... These guys were all cut loose one way or another. Three of them basically made room for JD Greenway, Sean Dhooghe, and Kyle Hayton so... I don't know, to me, falling back on the "Eaves recruits" thing is kind of a weak argument. Inamoto, Tischke, Frederic, Baker, Malone, are all Eaves guys and they are all good players. This team had more than a dozen guys that will play pro hockey, there was the talent to win. Staff still has to get the most out of whoever is in camp in October and the bottom line is, they just didn't do that this year.

    Word on the street is that it's pretty likely Tischke will be back and it's looking more like Frederic might be back too from what I've heard. A Ranta- Frederic-Weissbach line would have a ton of firepower. And we should have at least 8 D capable of being top 4 guys almost anywhere. Excited for Mersch and Messner to come in as well. These are Burish-type guys with talent that you can really build a culture around. A Mersch-Baker-Messner line would have scary jump to it.


    Also congrats to Wags for signing with the Chicago Wolves. Sounds likely that Linhart, Ustaski, Davison, Hughes will all sign pro deals soon.
    A few nit picks.

    When Bliss was cut lose....he was coming off a season where he had 1 assist as his only point in 24 USHL games and couldn't even stick in the USHL full time having to split time in the NAHL. I've seen Dhooghe's name mentioned as a dark horse possibility for the World Junior US roster (personally think that is a stretch....but there is zero doubt Bliss is not a candidate cause he is to old on top of the hockey thing). Bliss had better be putting up numbers as he is almost 20 years old playing 18/19 year olds. To put this in perspective...age-wise, the Bliss season last year of 1 assist in the USHL is the same age year as Dhooghe just put up half a point a game in D1.

    Jurusik put up significantly worse numbers then Berry last year (his goals against where more than a full goal a game worse). Betting Hayton would be better then Jurasik is a gamble every coach in the country would have taken. I have no idea what went wrong with Hayton, but him over Jurusik is not even debatable. Whatever Jurusik just did in the USHL (as he is about to turn 21 years old) has to be balanced with what he did in 2 years of college...which was not good by any measure.

    Greenway was already at UW on scholarship when Gildon and UW parted ways. In other words, one has nothing to do with the other.

    I hope you are right on Tischke and Frederic as both those guys make getting back to the tournament (which has to be the bar set going into the year) significantly easier.

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    Re: Wisconsin Hockey - 2018 Off-Season - Hope or Despair?

    Quote Originally Posted by markwojo View Post
    A few nit picks.

    When Bliss was cut lose....he was coming off a season where he had 1 assist as his only point in 24 USHL games and couldn't even stick in the USHL full time having to split time in the NAHL. I've seen Dhooghe's name mentioned as a dark horse possibility for the World Junior US roster (personally think that is a stretch....but there is zero doubt Bliss is not a candidate cause he is to old on top of the hockey thing). Bliss had better be putting up numbers as he is almost 20 years old playing 18/19 year olds. To put this in perspective...age-wise, the Bliss season last year of 1 assist in the USHL is the same age year as Dhooghe just put up half a point a game in D1.

    Jurusik put up significantly worse numbers then Berry last year (his goals against where more than a full goal a game worse). Betting Hayton would be better then Jurasik is a gamble every coach in the country would have taken. I have no idea what went wrong with Hayton, but him over Jurusik is not even debatable. Whatever Jurusik just did in the USHL (as he is about to turn 21 years old) has to be balanced with what he did in 2 years of college...which was not good by any measure.

    Greenway was already at UW on scholarship when Gildon and UW parted ways. In other words, one has nothing to do with the other.

    I hope you are right on Tischke and Frederic as both those guys make getting back to the tournament (which has to be the bar set going into the year) significantly easier.
    Fair points.

    Technically I'd say it's more like Greenway got Rockwood's $$ and Dhooghe got Gildon's; Hayton - Jurisk's. Not that it matters really.

    Someone reminded me Jack Becker was cut loose as well and that he had 3g-2a-5pts for Michigan in the last 4 games vs UW.

    Agree totally that Bliss looked like he was going to be a bust, obviously something went very wrong for him and no way was anyone bringing him in last year. But at this point there are very, very few guys who get to the top ten in USHL points (at any age) who end up being a bust in college, and Bliss will now (probably) play for Tech.


    I'm not saying anyone could foresee Bliss having a big year or Hayton being a bust, etc. Certainly I didn't, but on the other hand, no one is giving me a million bucks to figure this stuff out either. I did think Rockwood would be really good and that Jurusik had all the chops to be good but needed maturing. (Can I get a consulting fee?) We do forget a lot of our best goalies were upperclassmen before they took over. Els sat behind Bruckler, Bruckler behind Scott Kabatoff, and Kabatoff behind Mellanson, etc. Will be interested to see where Matt lands and how he does in the future. At any rate, the point was, there are good players here whether they were recruited earlier or later and it's very important what you do with the guys you have. The days of getting a bunch of draft picks and pointing at the ice and just watching them win 25 games are long, long gone. BU has 12 picks, 10 third round or better and will likely miss the tournament.

    While I totally understand the age consideration in evaluating young players, the question at the point of entry to college really is what is a player's ceiling and how quick can they get there? If Dhooghe has 20 goals next year Tony definitely will look like a genius. Dhooghe's 6-10-16 isn't bad compared to some other freshman F's like Reedy, but then again Dhooghe logged a ton of top line minutes and pp time this year. He's not getting the separation in college that he got against lesser skaters and he's been a bit of a liability in puck battles and on D at times. Love his heart but how much more weight can he put on for strength at 5'3" and how much quicker can he play? What's his ceiling? I don't know... I don't think anyone does really. He has a lot of skills but it's a gamble. That he ended the year on the 4th, and Zimmer, who had a hard time getting and staying in the lineup early ended playing top six time makes you wonder where it's all going.

    IMO what brought this team down was something in the locker room. What I've wondered is if sticking with a guy like Dhooghe up top come rain or shine, (and some other new guys in other situations) while other players were shuffled up and down and in and out of the line up at the drop of a hat, and this taken on top of stuff like replacing Rocky and Jurusik, who were both very well liked) ... then Hayton folds up and guys lose confidence in the plan... The perception might have been that Tony's new guys got better treatment. Or that Tony was building for the future too much. I don't know, just pure speculation.... but those are the sort of things that can creep into a locker room and wreak havoc on players mentally.
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    Re: Wisconsin Hockey - 2018 Off-Season - Hope or Despair?

    Congrats to Matt Ustaski who has signed with the Jacksonville Icemen.

    I wonder when he's joining up as the Icemen play the Everblades this weekend and I'd possibly be in the stands to see his debut. Grant Besse will be in town with Norfolk for three in a couple of weeks that I'll be at. Bess is killing it in the ECHL and is currently 9th in scoring, two points ahead of Idaho Steelheads Captain, Jefferson Dahl.
    Quote Originally Posted by WiscTJK View Post
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    Re: Wisconsin Hockey - 2018 Off-Season - Hope or Despair?

    Quote Originally Posted by Wisko McBadgerton View Post
    IMO what brought this team down was something in the locker room. What I've wondered is if sticking with a guy like Dhooghe up top come rain or shine, (and some other new guys in other situations) while other players were shuffled up and down and in and out of the line up at the drop of a hat, and this taken on top of stuff like replacing Rocky and Jurusik, who were both very well liked) ... then Hayton folds up and guys lose confidence in the plan... The perception might have been that Tony's new guys got better treatment. Or that Tony was building for the future too much. I don't know, just pure speculation.... but those are the sort of things that can creep into a locker room and wreak havoc on players mentally.
    I'm not sure how team builds a united cohesive chemistry when you are literally fighting for playing time every minute you are on the ice with your teammates. All these guys were one of the THE guys on previous teams, and not you are not playing at all or bouncing all over the place, and that is surely a foreign thing at this point in their careers. Naturally it only gets harder post college to keep your career alive, but them learning that skill now does nothing for this team now. I think they need to identify the top 9 F's, run them, and patch the 4th line together. Guys need to know their roles, be confident and not be looking over their shoulder constantly.

    Maybe at some point they needed to pick a goalie and run with it too and take the good with the bad. Goalies are especially sensitive. What was going though Hayton's head being the savior to the goat? I can understand why he never got going. I think Berry was just being the Berry we knew from last year, and that's ok. I agree no one in all of college hockey would not have traded Jurusik for Hayton.
    Wisconsin Hockey: 2, 4, 6, 8, 10 WE WANT MORE!
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    Come to the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod
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    Originally Posted by Wisko McBadgerton:
    "Baggot says Hughes and Rockwood are centering the top two lines...
    Timothy A --> Great hockey mind... Or Greatest hockey mind?!?"

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    Re: Wisconsin Hockey - 2018 Off-Season - Hope or Despair?

    Actually. I would love to say I love Wisconsin fans. Best away fans of all time. Deserve to win all things considered. If I wasn't a mainuh, I'd be a badger fan.

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    Re: Wisconsin Hockey - 2018 Off-Season - Hope or Despair?

    Best fans in all of college hockey are Badger fans. No question. Although my Maine fans are great too.

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    Re: Wisconsin Hockey - 2018 Off-Season - Hope or Despair?

    Quote Originally Posted by solovsfett View Post
    ...the tough part is they still have Eaves recruits and still have a few Eaves recruits coming in.

    It gets difficult to judge a coaching staff's abilities when in year 3 (next season) the staff will have a team that is half or less of their own guys.
    Serious inquiry guys, do you think the Badgers sub-500 season is due mostly to a failure in coaching or are the players mostly to blame? Thanks.

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    Re: Wisconsin Hockey - 2018 Off-Season - Hope or Despair?

    Let's not forget Grant Cruikshank is going to CC and that was a big screw up too, IMO. Wisconsin kid, great skater. From when he verbally committed to Eaves: “A dream come true,” said Cruikshank, noting he’s had an oversized Motion W logo over his bed since he was 8." From Todd Milewski Nov 2017: "A ninth member of the class fell through when Delafield native Grant Cruikshank didn't sign his letter of intent and decommitted earlier this week. It's believed that decision was due at least in part to the scholarship level offered by the team." (both from Wisconsin State Journal)

    Rockwood certainly was a great passer when he was here, and the staff sure missed on Max Gildon, and goalie is a sore spot too far for me. Lebedeff is doing well in the NAHL (9th in GAA and tied for 4th in Save%), but only 3 goalies in the top 10 are D1 bound right now (Wisconsin, Harvard and Niagra). Again thanks Todd M: "When you watch him, he looks like your typical NHL-type Finnish goaltender," Osiecki said. "He is still young and has to prove that he is going to be a high-level goaltender."

    And I keep going back to Mark Strobel was not a great hire. I hear things from people in the know about him and cringe, besides for the fact that we needed an offensive minded guy and not a another defenseman.

    I am not real happy with the staff right now and this better get turned around quick for what these guys are getting paid.

    Hopefully Mersch or another freshman (Messner) will come in and be a leader who can gel the team. Mersch is scoring well, captain of his team, and has the 3rd most penalty minute in the USHL (so plays with an edge).
    Last edited by WiscTJK; 03-09-2018 at 06:23 AM.

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    Re: Wisconsin Hockey - 2018 Off-Season - Hope or Despair?

    Quote Originally Posted by WiscTJK View Post
    Let's not forget Grant Cruikshank is going to CC and that was a big screw up too, IMO. Wisconsin kid, great skater. From when he verbally committed to Eaves: A dream come true, said Cruikshank, noting hes had an oversized Motion W logo over his bed since he was 8." From Todd Milewski Nov 2017: "A ninth member of the class fell through when Delafield native Grant Cruikshank didn't sign his letter of intent and decommitted earlier this week. It's believed that decision was due at least in part to the scholarship level offered by the team." (both from Wisconsin State Journal)

    Rockwood certainly was a great passer when he was here, and the staff sure missed on Max Gildon, and goalie is a sore spot too far for me. Lebedeff is doing well in the NAHL (9th in GAA and tied for 4th in Save%), but only 3 goalies in the top 10 are D1 bound right now (Wisconsin, Harvard and Niagra). Again thanks Todd M: "When you watch him, he looks like your typical NHL-type Finnish goaltender," Osiecki said. "He is still young and has to prove that he is going to be a high-level goaltender."

    And I keep going back to Mark Strobel was not a great hire. I hear things from people in the know about him and cringe, besides for the fact that we needed an offensive minded guy and not a another defenseman.

    I am not real happy with the staff right now and this better get turned around quick for what these guys are getting paid.

    Hopefully Mersch or another freshman (Messner) will come in and be a leader who can gel the team. Mersch is scoring well, captain of his team, and has the 3rd most penalty minute in the USHL (so plays with an edge).
    I don't disagree about being disappointed on Grant Cruikshank as he is a nice prospect that should have success at the D1 level. The reality is every team has 18 scholarships to try to spread over 25-30 kids and sometimes other schools will have more money to offer a kid then UW is positioned to at a given moment in time. Looking at the kids coming in next year, Ranta is getting money before Cruikshank, while Mersch/Messner are pretty nice prospect that have been committed a while too (my guess is both are coming for less then what money Cruikshank balked at). The further problem probably comes with trying to juggle the incoming D guys and their money. We have 4 D guys projected to get drafted (some pretty early) that are not coming for book money and a dining hall pass. If the choice is to spend parts of the 18 scholarships we have on Cruikshank or bolstering our D corp back to what it should be at UW....I'm picking guys about to get drafted that can help on D where we have been really bad since 2010.

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    Quote Originally Posted by WiscTJK View Post
    Let's not forget Grant Cruikshank is going to CC and that was a big screw up too, IMO. Wisconsin kid, great skater. From when he verbally committed to Eaves: A dream come true, said Cruikshank, noting hes had an oversized Motion W logo over his bed since he was 8." From Todd Milewski Nov 2017: "A ninth member of the class fell through when Delafield native Grant Cruikshank didn't sign his letter of intent and decommitted earlier this week. It's believed that decision was due at least in part to the scholarship level offered by the team." (both from Wisconsin State Journal)

    Rockwood certainly was a great passer when he was here, and the staff sure missed on Max Gildon, and goalie is a sore spot too far for me. Lebedeff is doing well in the NAHL (9th in GAA and tied for 4th in Save%), but only 3 goalies in the top 10 are D1 bound right now (Wisconsin, Harvard and Niagra). Again thanks Todd M: "When you watch him, he looks like your typical NHL-type Finnish goaltender," Osiecki said. "He is still young and has to prove that he is going to be a high-level goaltender."

    And I keep going back to Mark Strobel was not a great hire. I hear things from people in the know about him and cringe, besides for the fact that we needed an offensive minded guy and not a another defenseman.

    I am not real happy with the staff right now and this better get turned around quick for what these guys are getting paid.

    Hopefully Mersch or another freshman (Messner) will come in and be a leader who can gel the team. Mersch is scoring well, captain of his team, and has the 3rd most penalty minute in the USHL (so plays with an edge).
    Interesting. I'd love to know what people are saying about Strobel. Is thisvwith regard to his time at tosu or year one in Madison?

    One thing I think we all agree on, this staff has a narrowing window in terms of fan patience to turn this around and become national title contenders.

    Wisconsin hasn't been a national power in 24 years now and that needs to be turned around or season tickets will tank. As it is they may have lost 1/3 of the fan base permanently.

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    Re: Wisconsin Hockey - 2018 Off-Season - Hope or Despair?

    Quote Originally Posted by solovsfett View Post
    Interesting. I'd love to know what people are saying about Strobel. Is thisvwith regard to his time at tosu or year one in Madison?

    One thing I think we all agree on, this staff has a narrowing window in terms of fan patience to turn this around and become national title contenders.

    Wisconsin hasn't been a national power in 24 years now and that needs to be turned around or season tickets will tank. As it is they may have lost 1/3 of the fan base permanently.
    Madison. Let's just say I thought it was odd when Granato was gone, and Osiecki was the clear head coach filling in, that on the scoreboard they showed both guys as temporary head coach. Now he is an associate head coach, but I don't think that was an accident when I reflected on other comments I had heard. Again, I will stress I have heard this second hand so take all of it with a grain of salt.

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    Re: Wisconsin Hockey - 2018 Off-Season - Hope or Despair?

    Quote Originally Posted by BlackI View Post
    Best fans in all of college hockey are Badger fans. No question. Although my Maine fans are great too.
    Certainly can't argue with a superior intellect like this. Somebody buy BlackI a thinner!
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    Re: Wisconsin Hockey - 2018 Off-Season - Hope or Despair?

    Quote Originally Posted by Timothy A View Post
    I'm not sure how team builds a united cohesive chemistry when you are literally fighting for playing time every minute you are on the ice with your teammates. All these guys were one of the THE guys on previous teams, and not you are not playing at all or bouncing all over the place, and that is surely a foreign thing at this point in their careers. Naturally it only gets harder post college to keep your career alive, but them learning that skill now does nothing for this team now. I think they need to identify the top 9 F's, run them, and patch the 4th line together. Guys need to know their roles, be confident and not be looking over their shoulder constantly.

    Maybe at some point they needed to pick a goalie and run with it too and take the good with the bad. Goalies are especially sensitive. What was going though Hayton's head being the savior to the goat? I can understand why he never got going. I think Berry was just being the Berry we knew from last year, and that's ok. I agree no one in all of college hockey would not have traded Jurusik for Hayton.
    Can't say I disagree. This was much more the formula the previous year and I liked getting fresh guys Saturday on the 4th line. Thought it was really smart handling of the roster. I think they did stick with one goalie early, perhaps too long. Maybe should have platooned from the start and let them both get established as when we did finally throw Jack in, it was almost out of desperation. Hindsight on some of this stuff is 20/20 I guess. We thought Hayton looked solid out of the gate, the chinks didn't start showing up regularly for a month or two.

    Another thing is that the boys just didn't handle success very well. It's not surprising really as they'd busted *** for 2 or 3 years without much to show for it and in that circumstance, finally getting some wins and recognition can feel like you've finally arrived. Guys tend to relax a bit. The fact is though college Hockey is a race to get better faster than everyone else. Given a time machine, plenty of .500 teams from March would go back and just curb stomp winning teams from October.
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    Re: Wisconsin Hockey - 2018 Off-Season - Hope or Despair?

    Quote Originally Posted by solovsfett View Post
    Wisconsin hasn't been a national power in 24 years now and that needs to be turned around or season tickets will tank. As it is they may have lost 1/3 of the fan base permanently.
    What exactly is your definition of a "national power"? Seriously, what are your criteria?

    Going back 24 years puts as in the 93-94 / 94-95 range. Yeah, that was a great stretch from 87-88 to 94-98. 8 years in a row of making the tournament, 1 championship. 24 or more wins every year.

    I would argue that there have been other stretches, and certainly other years where we have been a power.

    I'll admit, that stretch from the late 80s to mid 90s was amazing. Who knows if it will ever happen again...but I would disagree with the notion that we haven't been a "national power" in over 2 decades. But we all know that I'm the apologist, glass is half full, everything is fine guy...so take that with a grain of salt.

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    Re: Wisconsin Hockey - 2018 Off-Season - Hope or Despair?

    Quote Originally Posted by markwojo View Post
    I don't disagree about being disappointed on Grant Cruikshank as he is a nice prospect that should have success at the D1 level. The reality is every team has 18 scholarships to try to spread over 25-30 kids and sometimes other schools will have more money to offer a kid then UW is positioned to at a given moment in time. Looking at the kids coming in next year, Ranta is getting money before Cruikshank, while Mersch/Messner are pretty nice prospect that have been committed a while too (my guess is both are coming for less then what money Cruikshank balked at). The further problem probably comes with trying to juggle the incoming D guys and their money. We have 4 D guys projected to get drafted (some pretty early) that are not coming for book money and a dining hall pass. If the choice is to spend parts of the 18 scholarships we have on Cruikshank or bolstering our D corp back to what it should be at UW....I'm picking guys about to get drafted that can help on D where we have been really bad since 2010.
    The counter to this though is that as it stands, it appears we will have 8 drafted D plus Tischke. (so it might as well be 9) 9 guys who would all get good minutes almost anywhere will fight it out for 4+2 spots. (I can see how that can become problematic if not handled carefully.) I'm still all for it, but at the same time you have to balance those guys value against your F prospects. Especially on a team that wants to play fast, puck possession offense. I mean if Bode Wilde suddenly decides he wants to be a Badger next year do we give him Baker's money? Wilde is a much better player, but...

    I think maybe the fact that the Krygier boys are twins probably sealed the deal with Cruikshank. We might otherwise only have added one D there and kept enough $$ to keep Grant too.
    Quote Originally Posted by WiscTJK View Post
    I'm with Wisko and Tim.
    Quote Originally Posted by Timothy A View Post
    Other than Wisko McBadgerton and Badger Bob, who is universally loved by all?

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by KaMiGo View Post
    What exactly is your definition of a "national power"? Seriously, what are your criteria?

    Going back 24 years puts as in the 93-94 / 94-95 range. Yeah, that was a great stretch from 87-88 to 94-98. 8 years in a row of making the tournament, 1 championship. 24 or more wins every year.

    I would argue that there have been other stretches, and certainly other years where we have been a power.

    I'll admit, that stretch from the late 80s to mid 90s was amazing. Who knows if it will ever happen again...but I would disagree with the notion that we haven't been a "national power" in over 2 decades. But we all know that I'm the apologist, glass is half full, everything is fine guy...so take that with a grain of salt.
    My definition of national power is consistent NCAA championship contender, period. From 1971 to 1994 that's what Wisconsin hockey was. Even in years where they missed the tourney: see Ranheim, Tuttle, Granato, they were **** good and we could sense the team was RIGHT THERE.

    Since 1994, Sauer's recruiting fell off and Eaves had about 2-3 great seasons, some good seasons and a few terrible ones. So this last 24 years? No, Wisconsin has not been a national power. Just an occasional spark.

    Another way to say it is over the last 24 years look at: Denver, Michigan, North Dakota, Boston College and to lesser degrees Minnesota, St. Cloud, Duluth, Boston University.

    Wisconsin has been OUT of the conversation more often than not for almost a quarter century now.

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