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Sean Pickett
03-27-2016, 05:16 PM
For most of Hockey East's existence BU, BC, UNH and Maine have been considered the Big 4 by fans. However, in the last ten seasons Maine has finished as a top 4 seed only twice, the last time five seasons ago. New Hampshire has only finished as a top 4 seed once in the last 5 seasons, three seasons ago. Is it time to replace them in the Big 4? BC spent six straight seasons out of the top 4 in the mid-nineties but returned to form and have only missed a top 4 seed twice in the past 19 seasons. Will Maine and/or New Hampshire return to the top 4 like BC did?

Of the original Big 4 this past season was the first in 32 seasons that only 1 of them finished with a top 4 seed. Over the previous 32 seasons all 4 were a top 4 seed 4 times, 3 of the 4 were a top 4 seed 17 times and in the other 10 seasons 2 of the 4 were top 4 seeds. In the tournament BU and BC have each reached the semifinals 22 times, with Maine reaching the semifinals 19 times and UNH 17 times. However, Maine has only reached the semifinals twice in the past ten seasons, the last time in 2012. New Hampshire has been in the semifinals only three times in the past eight seasons.

So should either Maine or New Hampshire be replaced? Both replaced?

And who should replace them? UMass Lowell and Providence seem to have the best credentials: UML has been a top 4 seeded team the past five seasons; Providence the past four seasons. Overall PC has 15 top 4 seeds to UML's 11, but Providence has never been the top seed and have been the 2nd seed just twice, while UMass Lowell has 1 top seed and 5 2nd seeds. In the tournament UML has been better, with 17 semifinal appearances, 6 title games and 2 titles. PC trails with 14 semifinal appearances, 4 title games and 2 titles.

In my opinion UML should replace Maine in the Big 4, but I'm still not sure if UNH should be replaced just yet.

Thoughts? Opinions?

Sean

walrus
03-27-2016, 05:31 PM
For most of Hockey East's existence BU, BC, UNH and Maine have been considered the Big 4 by fans. However, in the last ten seasons Maine has finished as a top 4 seed only twice, the last time five seasons ago. New Hampshire has only finished as a top 4 seed once in the last 5 seasons, three seasons ago. Is it time to replace them in the Big 4? BC spent six straight seasons out of the top 4 in the mid-nineties but returned to form and have only missed a top 4 seed twice in the past 19 seasons. Will Maine and/or New Hampshire return to the top 4 like BC did?

Of the original Big 4 this past season was the first in 33 seasons that only 1 of them finished with a top 4 seed. Over the previous 32 seasons all 4 were a top 4 seed 4 times, 3 of the 4 were a top 4 seed 17 times and in the other 10 seasons 2 of the 4 were top 4 seeds. In the tournament BU and BC have each reached the semifinals 22 times, with Maine reaching the semifinals 19 times and UNH 17 times. However, Maine has only reached the semifinals twice in the past ten seasons, the last time in 2012. New Hampshire has been in the semifinals only three times in the past eight seasons.

So should either Maine or New Hampshire be replaced? Both replaced?

And who should replace them? UMass Lowell and Providence seem to have the best credentials: UML has been a top 4 seeded team the past five seasons; Providence the past four seasons. Overall PC has 15 top 4 seeds to UML's 11, but Providence has never been the top seed and have been the 2nd seed just twice, while UMass Lowell has 1 top seed and 5 2nd seeds. In the tournament UML has been better, with 17 semifinal appearances, 6 title games and 2 titles. PC trails with 14 semifinal appearances, 4 title games and 2 titles.

In my opinion UML should replace Maine in the Big 4, but I'm still not sure if UNH should be replaced just yet.

Thoughts? Opinions?

Sean
Maine is a bottom feeder now. Pretty simple. Lowell has a far better program now. I doubt Maine ever returns because money to fund a first rate program just isn't there nor do I see much of a chance of it in the future. I'm also not convinced Red is the guy. Next season should tell us as its his recruits now

uncle_cliff
03-27-2016, 06:05 PM
Clearly BC, BU, UML, and PC are now the top teams in HE. It's fairly simple: good coaches and AD's develop/improve on successful programs and facilities, and thus good players want to play for them. Other teams may rise over the next few years, such as Northeastern, and other teams may fall, such as PC (losing many seniors). Time will tell.

Time will also tell if a storied program like Maine can recover, but with Red Gendron as their coach through 2019, I seriously doubt it.

sterlippo1
03-27-2016, 06:09 PM
In my opinion UML should replace Maine in the Big 4, but I'm still not sure if UNH should be replaced just yet.

Thoughts? Opinions?

Sean

PC passed them a few years ago and has a NC, 'nuff said

Patman
03-27-2016, 06:11 PM
yer overthinking it

Yuppie Scum
03-27-2016, 06:13 PM
Yale and Harvard used to be the best football teams in the country too.

Parity is a good thing.

Next topic: Bell Bottoms, will they ever regain their appeal? Thoughts? opinions?

brassbonanza
03-27-2016, 06:14 PM
Not sure "Big 4" is the right way to think about it, as there's more than four quality programs in the league and not an enormous disparity between number 4 and 5, but it's clear the four recruiting the best, performing the best, and have the best facilities are BC, BU, UML, and PC.

Bonin21
03-27-2016, 06:16 PM
Ya I'd say the response is why pick 4? And parity.

mookie1995
03-27-2016, 06:31 PM
So should either Maine or New Hampshire be replaced? Both replaced?


replace umo with quinnipiac or rpi or bentley or holy cross.

uhn is at least a close drive for a road game. they can stay.










:)

mookie1995
03-27-2016, 06:32 PM
Next topic: Bell Bottoms, will they ever regain their appeal? Thoughts? opinions?

um, we now have yoga pants. nothing else is needed or will ever be needed again.

kdiff77
03-27-2016, 06:56 PM
Hot take: BU is more likely to slip out of the so-called "top 4" than either PC or Lowell is. Quinn is a mediocre coach, and after a few years of underachieving despite having extremely talented rosters, he won't be able to sustain his recruiting success. Frankly, he lucked out with Eichel and that's the only reason the program isn't considered to be in a "rebuilding" stage right now.

Meanwhile, Leaman and Bazin continue to prove that they are elite coaches and can recruit top talent - and then actually develop it, too. I won't be surprised if, in a few years' time, we're talking about how Northeastern or UConn has displaced BU as a Hockey East top dog (I'm really happy all three of those teams have dog mascots).

*ducks*

Patman
03-27-2016, 06:59 PM
Hot take: BU is more likely to slip out of the so-called "top 4" than either PC or Lowell is. Quinn is a mediocre coach, and after a few years of underachieving despite having extremely talented rosters, he won't be able to sustain his recruiting success. Frankly, he lucked out with Eichel and that's the only reason the program isn't considered to be in a "rebuilding" stage right now.

Meanwhile, Leaman and Bazin continue to prove that they are elite coaches and can recruit top talent - and then actually develop it, too. I won't be surprised if, in a few years' time, we're talking about how Northeastern or UConn has displaced BU as a Hockey East top dog (I'm really happy all three of those teams have dog mascots).

*ducks*

having seen how long recruiting stays good for not so good coaches and not so good results... I think he'll have enough time to "learn on the job" because any real suffering begins.

mookie1995
03-27-2016, 07:08 PM
Hot take: BU is more likely to slip out of the so-called "top 4" than either PC or Lowell is. Quinn is a mediocre coach, and after a few years of underachieving despite having extremely talented rosters, he won't be able to sustain his recruiting success. Frankly, he lucked out with Eichel and that's the only reason the program isn't considered to be in a "rebuilding" stage right now.

Meanwhile, Leaman and Bazin continue to prove that they are elite coaches and can recruit top talent - and then actually develop it, too. I won't be surprised if, in a few years' time, we're talking about how Northeastern or UConn has displaced BU as a Hockey East top dog (I'm really happy all three of those teams have dog mascots).

*ducks*

no, good point. GQ is insisting on bringing in 17 and 18yo kids and not going the pc/umlol route of 22yo fr. only jrrrrrry can win that way. lucia can't and GQ can't.

mookie1995
03-27-2016, 07:09 PM
no, good point. GQ is insisting on bringing in 17 and 18yo kids and not going the pc/umlol route of 22yo fr. only jrrrrrry can win that way. lucia can't and GQ can't.

harvard can't. ylae learned to go the sr circuit route

Chuck Murray
03-27-2016, 09:05 PM
Hot take: BU is more likely to slip out of the so-called "top 4" than either PC or Lowell is. Quinn is a mediocre coach, and after a few years of underachieving despite having extremely talented rosters, he won't be able to sustain his recruiting success. Frankly, he lucked out with Eichel and that's the only reason the program isn't considered to be in a "rebuilding" stage right now.

Meanwhile, Leaman and Bazin continue to prove that they are elite coaches and can recruit top talent - and then actually develop it, too. I won't be surprised if, in a few years' time, we're talking about how Northeastern or UConn has displaced BU as a Hockey East top dog (I'm really happy all three of those teams have dog mascots).
*ducks*

I was with you right up until the point where the letters get dark above in your post.

Drew S.
03-27-2016, 09:16 PM
Hot take: BU is more likely to slip out of the so-called "top 4" than either PC or Lowell is. Quinn is a mediocre coach, and after a few years of underachieving despite having extremely talented rosters, he won't be able to sustain his recruiting success. Frankly, he lucked out with Eichel and that's the only reason the program isn't considered to be in a "rebuilding" stage right now.

Meanwhile, Leaman and Bazin continue to prove that they are elite coaches and can recruit top talent - and then actually develop it, too. I won't be surprised if, in a few years' time, we're talking about how Northeastern or UConn has displaced BU as a Hockey East top dog (I'm really happy all three of those teams have dog mascots).

*ducks*

I wonder how Providence gets on next year. They lose like 10 players. I don't think there is a big four anymore, league is wide open.

Snively65
03-27-2016, 09:34 PM
Wow, what a stupid thread. The whole premise of a HEA "big four" is a straw man, if there ever was one.

kdiff77
03-27-2016, 10:43 PM
no, good point. GQ is insisting on bringing in 17 and 18yo kids and not going the pc/umlol route of 22yo fr. only jrrrrrry can win that way. lucia can't and GQ can't.

Brown has had the same problem. We had three draft picks come in last season - all under the age of 19 - and none of them have come close to playing as well as you might expect of a future NHL player. Some flashes of high-end talent here and there, but overall, underwhelming.

It's tough to get teenagers up to speed mentally and physically against guys that are a few years older, and it's a credit to Jerry York that he's been consistently successful with lots of younger talent.

kdiff77
03-27-2016, 10:47 PM
I wonder how Providence gets on next year. They lose like 10 players. I don't think there is a big four anymore, league is wide open.

I'm certainly not an "insider" or anything, but I've heard they have impressive recruiting classes lined up for the foreseeable future. It's not exactly a hard sell - Nate is one of the most respected coaches in the business and the athletics department has really put itself on the map from a branding perspective with recent success in hockey and basketball.

I actually disagree that the league is wide open. IMO, it's BC, PC, Lowell, BU and then everyone else (NU can certainly force their way into that group if they continue their outstanding play next year). The likes of Vermont, Merrimack, UNH, UConn, Maine and UMass just aren't close to giving the top teams any sort of fight over the course of a season. On a game-by-game basis, we've seen them pull occasional upsets, but they simply can't match the talent and coaching at the top. I think the league was more open a few years back.

I'm also not including Notre Dame in this discussion, since they'll be gone after next year anyway.

RENCEB
03-27-2016, 10:55 PM
um, we now have yoga pants. nothing else is needed or will ever be needed again.Highly contingent upon the wearer:eek: