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View Full Version : UNO @ tUMD: So many scenarios so little time



Biddco
03-03-2013, 12:23 PM
UMD is looking for their first conference win since January and hopes to avoid falling further in the standings. UNO is looking to secure home ice and gain better position for the playoffs. I'll be happy if UMD splits or can do better than that. I'd like my team to stay in Minnesota so I can see the games. Who knows, we might be playing two straight weekends against each other.

Red Cows
03-03-2013, 02:35 PM
UNO is giving up goals in droves.

5 goals to UAA last Saturday night, and allowing them to go 4-6 on the power play? Allowing a guy to get the first points (2 goals) of his career against us? The fourth time this season UNO has allowed an opposing player's first career points? Allowing Wisconsin a season high 6 goals last night and 4 the night before? 10 goals in two games to them? Wisconsin scored more goals against us on the road than they did at home against Alabama Huntsville earlier this season. Wisconsin's nation's worst power play had two goals last night. 98 goals against is the most of any team in the country in D-1 with a winning record. Faulkner/Belfour/Massa aren't great, but, they aren't this bad.

The defense corps, which Coach Blais has spoon fed the media here as being the strength of the team, is way overrated. I am in the middle of doing a look at how many goals defenseman James Polk, and, in particular, Michael Young of UNO have been on the ice for this season. I know the answer is scary before I even finish as this one has jumped out at me all season. Young was on the ice for 4 of Wisconsin's goals just last night and that is far from the first such "performance" by him this season.

Considering how we finished last year and that this season is seemingly finishing on a carbon copy note, it make me wonder just how good of a hold Coach Blais has on the helm these days. My thinking about this is also somewhat colored by the performance of his last World Juniors team as well. It's like he's exhausted his supply of eau de Dean Blais or something.

UNO has now been whistled down for 13, thirteen too many men on the ice penalties this season. As many times as in the last 6 seasons, combined. That tell you anything? Something is wrong with the direction of this ship and I can't quite put my finger on what it is. This is the 2nd year in a row that a very promising start to a season has totally imploded, and, in a shocking manner. We've now lost 5 in a row, all at home. And except for one game, in front of large enthusiastic crowds. 45,000+ over the last 5 games! (later edit: I was WAY off here. The actual, official attendance for UNO's last 5 home games, not including the under 18 team exhibition game, has been 55,074--an average 11,015 fans per game--UNO is 4th in the nation in attendance this season.)

To me, something is lacking in the execution and in the effort being put forth here. I think leadership is an issue (and definitely was last year after Coach Blais kicked our senior captain off the team entirely) as this team only has 3 seniors on it (Faulkner, Aneloski, and Gwidt).

I would not be shocked if UNO swept UMD or if we got swept. Just about anything is possible in my book. My bet is your offense "all of sudden" looks a lot a better than it has, that's for sure. I am totally pessimistic, I'm sorry to say.

Biddco
03-04-2013, 09:24 AM
I remember you saying how many too many on the ice penalties you had in November...and that hasn't been resolved? What is going on with that. It is pretty bad to give up so many goals, and PP to that Wisconsin team. Sounds like with the lack of leadership this UNO is team is not going far in the playoffs. Your post gives me confidence UMD can split or do better than that.

I want a conference win!

Red Cows
03-05-2013, 02:32 AM
I remember you saying how many too many on the ice penalties you had in November...and that hasn't been resolved? What is going on with that. It is pretty bad to give up so many goals, and PP to that Wisconsin team. Sounds like with the lack of leadership this UNO is team is not going far in the playoffs. Your post gives me confidence UMD can split or do better than that.

I want a conference win!

Coach Blais keeps saying when he's been asked about it by the local media about all the too-many-men-on-the-ice penalties that it is the fault of the coaching staff. However, he hasn't said anything how it is being addressed (if it even has been) and it obviously appears to have not been since we have not even gone so much as 3 straight games all season without being nailed with one this year.

Here is the last (unacceptable response) that he had to the situation:

http://www.omaha.com/article/20130201/MAVS/702019838/1001

This has cost UNO 7 goals this season! Utterly ridiculous! Nothing like giving and comfort to the enemy. He thinks this is funny?

This is a "get your *** in my office" if I am the A.D., and "explain this nonsense to me" kind of thing.

I mean, this is completely inexcusable.

UNO has had a couple entire seasons where this has not been called on them even once! This is only the 16th year of the program!

Coach Blais said on his radio show right before the first of the year (paraphrased) that while this isn't the most talented team he's had in his coaching career they are the "most focused" team he has ever had. If that is true then they are obviously the dumbest. They can't even count to 5!

UNO. In 3 seasons under Dean Blais, UNO is 1-10 in the month of March in the WCHA. that includes the "loss" to Michigan in the NCAA tournament (1-9 if you think that game is still going).

MAVFANJEFF
03-05-2013, 05:43 PM
Like I said, gaptooth has lost his touch. Hiring jutting? REALLY? 13 TMM penalties? At the Saturday game VS Wisc UNO didn't look anywhere close to a team that wanted to win. And to keep faulkner in there after he gave up 4 goals much less 6 is rediculous. It was painful watching faulkner look at the bench like he knew he was going to get pulled but he didn't. I'm so glad I didn't blow money on season tickets. It seems like blais is just going to let his contract run out and retire because he knows UNO can't afford to buy him out.

Biddco
03-05-2013, 08:05 PM
You guys are giving me confidence that UMD can sweep you guys. Man things sounds messed up.
Gaptooth has come to UNO with a lot of deserved hype. He is a great coach. But he is not living up to the hype and this year has been a big struggle at times for you guys (same for us but at least we didn't have players leave for the CHL or leave the team).


Therefore Dean Blais is the Tubby Smith of College Hockey.

Red Cows
03-06-2013, 01:41 AM
There is no telling which UNO team shows up this weekend.

The team that came darn near sweeping the Gophers in Mariucci in November (and has 6 WCHA sweeps this season)? Or the one that has looked like they wanted to be somewhere else (and our defensemen mostly were) for the past 5 games?

Brent Gwindt is talking the talk, for himself and the team, but they sure aren't walking the walk:

http://www.omaha.com/article/20130303/MAVS/703039827/1085#q-amp-a-with-uno-s-brent-gwindt


We seem to have the talent. I think we'll be much improved next season as we have another good class coming in and we will have the most upper classmen we've had in awhile next season. Eighteen juniors and seniors next season if everybody comes back. Some won't, I think. Coach Blais keeps saying how Sustr for sure isn't coming back and how all the scouts are "drooling" over him. All I can say about that is, if that's the case, how come he has yet to be drafted by anybody, then?

My concerns next season are: Who is going to be the goalie, and, is our defense corps going to be improved? Putting pucks in the net is not going to be an issue.

I wonder how much longer Coach Blais is going to stick around, too. My bet is until we have one season completed in our new arena. That's my guess. 3 more seasons, perhaps, then? Then I can almost unequivocally guarantee you that either Mike Hastings or Mike Guentzel is going to be UNO's next head coach. If one of them isn't, they will sure be on Trev Alberts short list in any event.

This team could win the WCHA tourney or go out in two straight again this season. At this point I don't have a clue what is going to happen. My guess is that we're gonna get DU in the first round, here or there, that could go either way, and they are not a good match-up for us at all. We have not won at Magness since 1997 and DU is 12-3-2 against us all time.

Interesting that UMD and UNO have given up the exact same number of goals this season so far, 98. Except that UNO has scored more goals than any team in the nation except for the Gophers. I'd really like to see Ryan Walters have a big weekend but I think his Hobey Baker chances are probably down the tubes right along with UNO's season ending slide here.

I think this weekend is a split. UNO Friday and UMD Saturday.

Biddco
03-06-2013, 08:21 AM
You guys are giving me lots of confidence for my squad this weekend. Knowing that however means they will probably split and disappointing. I want a season highlight from this team...otherwise it will be a disappointing year.

SCSU Euro
03-06-2013, 08:34 AM
You guys are giving me lots of confidence for my squad this weekend. Knowing that however means they will probably split and disappointing. I want a season highlight from this team...otherwise it will be a disappointing year.

Grandma's Thanksgiving weekend was your season highlight

Biddco
03-06-2013, 08:39 AM
Grandma's Thanksgiving weekend was your season highlightActually I'm going to go with the time we got a bunch of chants started with this random 4 year old Bulldog fan. He wasn't afraid to start so we joined in! It was great

Red Cows
03-08-2013, 11:52 PM
You guys are giving me lots of confidence for my squad this weekend. Knowing that however means they will probably split and disappointing. I want a season highlight from this team...otherwise it will be a disappointing year.

Bad UNO series prophecy being fulfilled. I must say I am not surprised.

As I said before, something is wrong here and I am pretty convinced there is something going on that it isn't outwardly evident. It's like there is some sort of team issue that isn't being discussed or talked about. This team is seriously looking like it almost isn't even being coached. That is either a team attitude problem or a coaching staff problem. We've look like we almost aren't even trying some of the time now.

Prediction: We lose tomorrow night, too, and get swept out of the WCHA playoffs as well in 2 straight. My confidence in what is going with this team is exactly zero right now. Seriously.

Absolutely head scratching things going on every game. Tonight, UNO is the beneficiary of a major penalty and game misconduct 32 seconds into the 2nd period holding a 3-1 lead. UMD kills the entire penalty and then scores just 19 seconds after it's over to make it 3-2 and scores again just 1:31 later to make it 3-3. Then, later in the same period, UNO allows 2 power play goals by Mike Seidel just 37 seconds apart that were the result of two different power plays, the 2nd power play goal coming just 6 seconds after the faceoff!

After UNO gets one back to make it 5-4 UMD early in the third, we are so dyslexic in our own end that we can't get the goalie off the ice and the extra attacker on until there is less than a minute left in the game.

Tragic. Horrendous. Awful (insert your adjective of choice here).

One "positive", I guess. We didn't get a too-many-men-on-the-ice penalty tonight. Wow, no great loss without some gain, huh?

We have to win and need only one of Denver, Mankato, or Wisconsin to lose tomorrow night to get home ice. If they all win, we're on the road no matter what we do tomorrow night.

Tipsy McStagger
03-08-2013, 11:58 PM
Red cows:
Why would Hastings leave MSU unless UNO paid him a lot more? He is already doing well at MSU and if he takes this team into the WCHA they can make the NCAA almost every year.

Biddco
03-09-2013, 12:00 AM
Yes it seems like something is going on with UNO that is not being let outside of the program. Still it is going to be really tough for UMD to get a sweep tomorrow. I expect UNO to play angry and hard to sweep.

I hope what we saw from UMD tonight is a sign that this team won't give up and has a playoff win and Final Five run in them. It was great to seem them score a ton tonight and play from behind. I was really worried after we went down by two goals at the start of the game. But they found a way to come back and it felt great to get our first WCHA win since Jan.

I cannot wait for tomorrow after the game so I can find where the hell UMD is going to play. Cmon Minnesota State!

Biddco
03-09-2013, 12:01 AM
Reason for UNO playing poorly? Troy Jutting ;)

SCSU Euro
03-09-2013, 01:49 AM
Bad UNO series prophecy being fulfilled. I must say I am not surprised.

As I said before, something is wrong here and I am pretty convinced there is something going on that it isn't outwardly evident. It's like there is some sort of team issue that isn't being discussed or talked about. This team is seriously looking like it almost isn't even being coached. That is either a team attitude problem or a coaching staff problem. We've look like we almost aren't even trying some of the time now.

Prediction: We lose tomorrow night, too, and get swept out of the WCHA playoffs as well in 2 straight. My confidence in what is going with this team is exactly zero right now. Seriously.

Absolutely head scratching things going on every game. Tonight, UNO is the beneficiary of a major penalty and game misconduct 32 seconds into the 2nd period holding a 3-1 lead. UMD kills the entire penalty and then scores just 19 seconds after it's over to make it 3-2 and scores again just 1:31 later to make it 3-3. Then, later in the same period, UNO allows 2 power play goals by Mike Seidel just 37 seconds apart that were the result of two different power plays, the 2nd power play goal coming just 6 seconds after the faceoff!

After UNO gets one back to make it 5-4 UMD early in the third, we are so dyslexic in our own end that we can't get the goalie off the ice and the extra attacker on until there is less than a minute left in the game.

Tragic. Horrendous. Awful (insert your adjective of choice here).

One "positive", I guess. We didn't get a too-many-men-on-the-ice penalty tonight. Wow, no great loss without some gain, huh?

We have to win and need only one of Denver, Mankato, or Wisconsin to lose tomorrow night to get home ice. If they all win, we're on the road no matter what we do tomorrow night.

Don't be so dramatic. They'll TIE tomorrow... then lose in 2 in the WCHA playoffs.

Red Cows
03-09-2013, 01:57 PM
Red cows:
Why would Hastings leave MSU unless UNO paid him a lot more? He is already doing well at MSU and if he takes this team into the WCHA they can make the NCAA almost every year.

Hastings has spent a goodly chunk of his adult life living in Omaha (18 years). Until they moved to Mankato, both his kids were born here and had lived their entire lives in Omaha (although both he and his wife are from Minnesota). He is a household name in Omaha known by everybody in the hockey community, and then some, by virtue of his legendary career with the Omaha Lancers. He was designated the "Head Coach in Waiting" by Coach Blais when he hired Hastings to be the Assistant Head Coach after he took the reigns at UNO. See this July 2009 interview by then KETV (Omaha ABC Affiliate) sports anchor Matt Schick, who is now the in-studio host of ESPNU:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XsOTMP2NgRA

Here's a CHN interview with Hastings from last fall on taking the MSM job:

http://www.collegehockeynews.com/news/2012/10/10_qa_with_minnesota_state_coach.php

What he didn't say here is that when Coach Blais took the job here he had been saying that he wasn't going to hang around a terribly long time, maybe 5 years, before he was going to retire and turn the reigns over to Hastings. Then, during the 2011-2012 season, in December of 2011, Coach Blais was quoted (in the North Dakota press) as saying to a North Dakota booster luncheon in Grand Forks while UNO was there to play the Fighting Sioux, when asked about his plans as to how long he was going to coach, he gave an answer that the Omaha World Herald followed up on in an article they did on the topic. In that article he completely reneged on what he'd been saying and gave a very ambiguous answer to the Omaha World Herald about how long he'd be around. Take a look at the article:

http://www.omaha.com/article/20120111/MAVS/701119780/-1

Which then led to this:

http://www.omaha.com/article/20111228/MAVS/712289830/1001

I think these events turned Dean Blais and Mike Hastings into the functional equivalent of Mack Brown and Wil Muschamp. Since Coach Blais made his retirement timeline so unspecific, and took a turn from what he had been saying, initially, when he took the job, I think Coach Hastings took a job he might not otherwise have taken. He is 47 now, after all.

Conversely, I think, unless Coach Blais is still here in another 5 years, I think Hastings jumps at the chance to come back here if it is offered to him. Besides the ties he has to Omaha I've already pointed out, there are a number of reasons I think he comes back here.

1. Blais is being paid more than Hastings is, currently, and UNO can afford to pay more than Mankato would (and this will be particularly true when UNO moves into their new arena). Even though Mankato has a few hundred more students than UNO, UNO has a vastly larger budget, a difference of more than 50 million dollars.

2. UNO is going to be playing in a brand new, state of the art, dedicated facility (I think Coach Blais is gone after the first year in this new building), that will be sold out every night we play in it.

3. UNO will playing in a more prestigious conference with many of the big name teams in college hockey.

4. Omaha (population 865,000) is a far bigger and nicer town than Mankato (population 53,000)--sorry, Purple Cows.

All this makes for far more to recruit to here than there. Is the allure of being "a big fish in a little pond" enough to keep Mike Hastings in Mankato? Not if he is the competitor I think he is. I think he jumps at the chance to come back here, particularly if the chance comes sooner rather than later. This was a big concern of the Mankato fans I sat next to when they were in town to play us back in December when chatting with them.

Red Cows
03-09-2013, 09:51 PM
Don't be so dramatic. They'll TIE tomorrow... then lose in 2 in the WCHA playoffs.

Think I was being dramatic, now, after the 6 alarm fire and implosion-ending to our season tonight capped by our worst loss (by far) of the season and ONLY shutout of us of the season, along with a season high number of penalties and penalty minutes??

There are serious on-ice problems here, I am telling you. Coach Blais has lost this team, somehow.

MAVFANJEFF
03-10-2013, 12:44 PM
Reason for UNO playing poorly? Troy Jutting ;)

yep that has a lot to do with it. Plus the fact that Sustr came out this season looking like a leader now he looks like a follower waiting to sign his pro contract. I think dean is hanging around until the arena gets built but his heart doesn't seem to be in it anymore. He needs to go. there's some chucklehead over on mavpuck claiming that it's not dean's fault the team can't win in march, "he's an offensive coach" or some such garbage. So where was our offense? We got beat 6-0 at Duluth.

Biddco
03-10-2013, 12:54 PM
That was a good old fashioned *** kicking. Dean Blais=Tubby Smith

Biddco
03-10-2013, 12:56 PM
Things are bad for UNO when the team has a meeting about not getting penalized and then They have a game where they have two guys ejected and give up 5 PPG on 8 chances.

Yikes