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aparch
07-03-2019, 06:52 AM
Years past, the mid-1990s to be exact, then affiliate CCHA member Alaska-Fairbanks was seeking full membership. One coach from Miami strongly defended the Nanooks in the media when groans over lost class time, long flights, and effects on preparation and performance took hold of the debate. The Miami coach called the concerns ridiculous and pushed for admittance of UAF. That same coach, George Gwozdecky, was grinning widely at a podium in 2011 when the “National Collegiate Hockey Conference” name was unveiled, leaving behind 11 schools, including Alaska-Fairbanks.

And both times Gwozdecky was not there on opening day following each move to see his dreams come to fruition.
(Gwoz was fired from Denver the spring before the NCHC played their first game, left Miami for Denver the summer the CCHA made UA_ a full member, I'm sensing a pattern here...)

aparch
07-03-2019, 07:10 AM
One team jumped ship immediately, Northern Michigan. One team tried to keep it afloat, Bowling Green, by asking MAC buddy Buffalo to reboot hockey.

This first bit seems to keep surprising everyone, what they seem to forget is that the WCHA invited them to leave the CCHA in 2009 (to join in 2011). NMU turned that invitation down, and UNO was invited.

That second bit, let's not forget that one day after extending an invitation, three days after holding a joint meeting by the WCHA and CCHA staff and school officials, LSSU, FSU and UA_ accepted an invitation to jump to the WCHA.

BGSU was (for six weeks) holding just the CCHA name and their d*cks in their hands seeing if they could find out what fellow MAC school WMU was going to do.

Then SCSU and WMU announce they're going to the NCHC and BGSU *still* waited two weeks to figure their sh*t out, and asked the WCHA for an extension so they could delay their choice because Notre Dame still hadn't made a decision and was flirting with the NCHC still.

Don't go painting BGSU as keeping the dream alive when they never wanted to be in the WCHA either, and were the last team standing in the CCHA.

AMC
07-03-2019, 09:24 AM
The music was still playing when the NCHC made their move. The SS killed the DJ and lit two chairs on fire.

GFM

I think the NCHC was worse. The NCHC made their move at a time when the entirety of college hockey west of the Appalachians could have sat down and come up with a collaborative solution that, if not ideal for everyone, was at least workable. Instead they just grabbed the "most appealing" of the western schools and left everyone else standing there holding the bag. The nWCHA schools never chose each other, they are what's left. The schools in Hockey East, ECAC, the Big Ten, the NCHC, even the AHA all picked each other. Sure, some BC fans may not love being in a league with Merrimack, but Hockey East chose Merrimack.

Bowling Green, Ferris, Northern Michigan, etc. never CHOSE to be in a league with UAH or the Alaskas. They were just the teams that were left when everyone else picked their homes. The rest of college hockey basically decided that these seven schools are the ones that get to deal with going to Alaska and Alabama every year. They've played with those three schools for a few years, and for whatever reason, have decided it isn't tenable to remain in the league with three remote outposts. And that is fair. They know their budgets, and they know how all that travel affects their kids.

I also don't look at the announcement as "screw these guys, we are completely done." I think it is the start of a process, and they are saying "hey, college hockey, if you think it is important to have teams in Alaska and Alabama, you need to step up and help support them." Maybe the answer is that the NCHC agrees to take Fairbanks. Maybe the answer is that all three go independent but there's some sort of "scheduling alliance" where each of the six conferences guarantee two of their schools each go to each of UAH, UAA and Fairbanks (Arizona State seems to be scheduling fine, but they have some inherent financial and geographic advantages), giving each of the three twelve guaranteed home games each year.

JohnsonsJerseys
07-03-2019, 09:45 AM
As I have stated previously, I don't blame the Big for the disaster that college hockey has become and it's poor geographic alignment out West. They were adding hockey to an existing conference structure. As much as fans didn't like the move, I really don't think there is any real argument against the Big hockey conference once they had a suitable number of teams.

The NaCHo however was a complete knee jerk reaction to the Big conference. One the Big plucked their teams, you still had two smaller, yet stable, conferences with room for expansion in the future. However the NaCHo teams used it as their excuse to dump perceived "dead weight" and left the other teams to pick up the pieces in their wake. As another poster mentioned, the nWCHA was formed out of necessity, not because of any grand vision that by joining those 10 teams the future looked super awesome. The conference footprint was massive and pointless.

The only solution to this problem that has a happy ending in my opinion is to once again split the AK schools into separate conferences. I don't believe the statement that "No one wants to play AK schools..." I do believe the statement that no one wants play AT UAA, UAF AND UAH all in the same season. When and if ASU gets their act together you can add their name to that list and make it a foursome of teams no one wants more than one or two of in their conference.

The NCHC needs to get off their high horse and offer a conference home to one of the AK schools and maybe add ASU to even out their number if they so choose. (I still don't think ASU is the desirable add some folks seem to think they are. If they were such a hot commodity they would be in a conference now, rink or not.) The Secret Seven needs to be thankful they only have to travel once to AK in a season and accept ONE of the AK schools back into their new conference as well.

As for UAH, I could see them still being a fit with the Secret Seven. I don't know how attractive they look to AH. I think they look more attractive to AH if Holy Cross remains in AH and UAH gives them an even number. If AH feel that HC will eventually follow their women's program to Hockey East then I think UAH won't be seriously considered for membership.

purpleinnebraska
07-03-2019, 10:20 AM
and they are saying "hey, college hockey, if you think it is important to have teams in Alaska and Alabama, you need to step up and help support them."

Here's the heart of the problem - There is no "college hockey" as an entity. It's 60 individual programs, each of whom ultimately needs to take care of itself. There is no Big Daddy College Hockey who can step in and bail out the UA programs, or the WCHA, or the other 7 members of the WCHA. As harsh as the reality is, college hockey is not a particularly profitable endeavor, outside of a handful (or less) programs. To think Kato, or BGSU, or any of the others can absorb losses year after year is folly. Eventually, the current system will drag them all down.

I hate everything about this situation, including the way it was handled, but for me, it isn't worth it for us to bankrupt our program as well. If those 3 programs are to be saved, it's going to take a heckuva lot more resources than the other 7 schools have.

TheRevengeance
07-03-2019, 10:30 AM
How does the narrative that the NCHC hand picked all the good teams then packed up and left keep propagating? It's been pretty well established that after the B1G teams pulled out the small schools realized they had a numbers advantage and intended to use it to bring everybody else to their level and cut back spending. Of course the teams that are nationally competitive year in and year out are going to look for other options at that point. The break off is just as much the small schools' fault as anybody else's, they tried to take advantage of the new reality and it backfired on them. And in the end they kind of did get what they wanted, their conference with a small budget full of financially "like minded" schools, losing the teams they wanted to play with was the price they paid for it. And now many of those same schools are back here as the ringleaders yet again. The NCHC may have been a power grab by a number of schools, but it was born from a failed power grab before it.

Shirtless Guy
07-03-2019, 10:48 AM
Stop with the Shady Seven crap...its all out in the open. I'm not sure what anyone expected them to do? It's been known for years that BGSU and MSUM have not been happy with this league and have wanted out in various forms. The fact that they are leaving along with the other 5 isn't a surprise and no one in their right mind is going to go much further than saying "I'm leaving" until they're actually leaving. Who knows, as I've stated this might just push to get the 3 teams in question to either step up their game or they'll move on. But if things don't get fixed, the teams aren't required to stay another year without paying penalties to the league.

TalonsUpPuckDown
07-03-2019, 10:59 AM
How does the narrative that the NCHC hand picked all the good teams then packed up and left keep propagating? It's been pretty well established that after the B1G teams pulled out the small schools realized they had a numbers advantage and intended to use it to bring everybody else to their level and cut back spending. Of course the teams that are nationally competitive year in and year out are going to look for other options at that point. The break off is just as much the small schools' fault as anybody else's, they tried to take advantage of the new reality and it backfired on them. And in the end they kind of did get what they wanted, their conference with a small budget full of financially "like minded" schools, losing the teams they wanted to play with was the price they paid for it. And now many of those same schools are back here as the ringleaders yet again. The NCHC may have been a power grab by a number of schools, but it was born from a failed power grab before it.

Wow. This is the first time I've heard that Bowling Green was a ringleader in the creation of the Nachos. If I'd known that, the amount of shade I've slung towards Miami State on various message boards would have had a completely different tone!

gfmorris
07-03-2019, 10:59 AM
I think the NCHC was worse. The NCHC made their move at a time when the entirety of college hockey west of the Appalachians could have sat down and come up with a collaborative solution that, if not ideal for everyone, was at least workable. Instead they just grabbed the "most appealing" of the western schools and left everyone else standing there holding the bag. The nWCHA schools never chose each other, they are what's left. The schools in Hockey East, ECAC, the Big Ten, the NCHC, even the AHA all picked each other. Sure, some BC fans may not love being in a league with Merrimack, but Hockey East chose Merrimack.

Bowling Green, Ferris, Northern Michigan, etc. never CHOSE to be in a league with UAH or the Alaskas. They were just the teams that were left when everyone else picked their homes. The rest of college hockey basically decided that these seven schools are the ones that get to deal with going to Alaska and Alabama every year. They've played with those three schools for a few years, and for whatever reason, have decided it isn't tenable to remain in the league with three remote outposts. And that is fair. They know their budgets, and they know how all that travel affects their kids.

I also don't look at the announcement as "screw these guys, we are completely done." I think it is the start of a process, and they are saying "hey, college hockey, if you think it is important to have teams in Alaska and Alabama, you need to step up and help support them." Maybe the answer is that the NCHC agrees to take Fairbanks. Maybe the answer is that all three go independent but there's some sort of "scheduling alliance" where each of the six conferences guarantee two of their schools each go to each of UAH, UAA and Fairbanks (Arizona State seems to be scheduling fine, but they have some inherent financial and geographic advantages), giving each of the three twelve guaranteed home games each year.

Really?! It always felt to me, an alumnus and supporter of the hockey program, that UAH was included in the WCHA purely because those nine schools likely couldn't handle the guilt and reputation hit of being the school to reject a program when a quasi-new conference was being filled in a time where there's no value in having 9 teams instead of 10 (can't build a balanced schedule) and while UAH made the argument — I've seen the proposal, it's prominent —*that admitting the Chargers limited the amount of times that nWCHA teams would do the Alaska double.

The timing couldn't suck more for any of the three schools. Alaska's budget woes are well-documented; UAH just put their (useless and sometimes actively destructive) AD (who ignored warnings that this was coming) out to pasture and just changed Presidents.

GFM

aparch
07-03-2019, 11:08 AM
How does the narrative that the NCHC hand picked all the good teams then packed up and left keep propagating? ...
The NCHC may have been a power grab by a number of schools, but it was born from a failed power grab before it.
You said it yourself: the NCHC was born from a failed power grab before it. These same NCHC schools were growing bitter with having to split the Final Five golden goose egg every year with the likes of MTU, UAA. Add in BSU in 2009 for the 2011 season, and all the grumbling finally came to a head.

In hindsight, the NCHC schools had one foot out the door since the CHA exodus occurred in 2009, because they didn't want "more of *those* schools" taking their precious nest egg.


*The exception is Miami, who wasn't getting a dime from the CCHA because NONE of the schools saw a Super Six check. That money went to pay for the fan experience and league award banquet during the finals.

Pirateasaur
07-03-2019, 11:14 AM
It was alluded to earlier in the thread but none of these schools are apparently eligible for B1G membership. What requirement do they not meet? Johns Hopkins is a B1G lacrosse member so I am not sure what would be stopping the B1G from taking on one of these programs to get to 8 members. We already have Notre Dame.

aparch
07-03-2019, 11:17 AM
It was alluded to earlier in the thread but none of these schools are apparently eligible for B1G membership. What requirement do they not meet? ...

<img width=350 src=https://i2.wp.com/marxiststudent.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/Monopoly.png>

SJHovey
07-03-2019, 11:20 AM
You said it yourself: the NCHC was born from a failed power grab before it. These same NCHC schools were growing bitter with having to split the Final Five golden goose egg every year with the likes of MTU, UAA. Add in BSU in 2009 for the 2011 season, and all the grumbling finally came to a head.

In hindsight, the NCHC schools had one foot out the door since the CHA exodus occurred in 2009, because they didn't want "more of *those* schools" taking their precious nest egg.


*The exception is Miami, who wasn't getting a dime from the CCHA because NONE of the schools saw a Super Six check. That money went to pay for the fan experience and league award banquet during the finals.

It's been well documented why the NCHC came about. Two of the major revenue producing schools in the conference left. That meant there were fewer schools producing revenue for the conference. The commissioner, who frankly was and is an idiot, refused to recognize this and basically recommended a "stay the course" narrative. The small schools in the conference, liking the austerity approach, negotiated a deal to extend his contract without even bothering to tell schools like UND and DU. So their response was basically, if you like him and his approach so much, have at it. We're going a different direction.

You'd have a pretty tough time convincing anyone in the NCHC, or for that matter anyone who really understands college hockey, that those eight schools made a bad decision. In fact, they made a very good decision. That the remaining WCHA teams are only now just learning that DU and UND were right when they questioned McLeod's approach isn't the NCHC teams' fault.

I don't blame the seven teams who are forming a separate league. They are doing what's best for their programs. Yeah, it sucks for those left behind. I feel more for the fans and players than I do for the programs, since the programs have a choice as to how much they want to invest to create a successful program with whom other programs want to associate.

Pirateasaur
07-03-2019, 11:25 AM
<img width=350 src=https://i2.wp.com/marxiststudent.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/Monopoly.png>

I mean, probably, yeah. I figure it will never happen because of that but I was wondering if there is some actual written rule that makes it impossible.

aparch
07-03-2019, 11:32 AM
Thank you SJHovey; as a CCHA fan, I didn't have my ear to the ground on the WCHA's problems. I knew it had come out later there were issues, but I didnt recall all of the behind the scenes problems. The CCHA was in a similar boat by losing their two "big" schools (tOSU was never treated like MI/MSU). Hell, our commissioner bailed two days after the B1G conference was announced.

Obviously it was more tilted to the small schools in the CCHA, because with UNO, MI, MSU, and tOSU leaving, you were left with Notre Dame, Miami, WMU, a very large financial gap FSU/NMU/UAF, BGSU, then LSSU.

AMC
07-03-2019, 11:37 AM
Really?! It always felt to me, an alumnus and supporter of the hockey program, that UAH was included in the WCHA purely because those nine schools likely couldn't handle the guilt and reputation hit of being the school to reject a program when a quasi-new conference was being filled in a time where there's no value in having 9 teams instead of 10 (can't build a balanced schedule) and while UAH made the argument — I've seen the proposal, it's prominent —*that admitting the Chargers limited the amount of times that nWCHA teams would do the Alaska double.

The timing couldn't suck more for any of the three schools. Alaska's budget woes are well-documented; UAH just put their (useless and sometimes actively destructive) AD (who ignored warnings that this was coming) out to pasture and just changed Presidents.

GFM

Right, I think we are saying the same thing. The WCHA added the Alaskas and UAH not because they particularly wanted to be in a conference with those three schools, but because no one else wanted to be in a conference with them, either, and the WCHA was the last dance partner to fill out their dance card. There's just as much (technical) room in the NCHC or Big 10 to add schools. I think it's fair for the rest of the WCHA to say "If there's anyone out there this matters to, help out. If not, we've done what we can do."

And, to the point below that there's no "College Hockey" monolith and that there are just 60 schools orbiting around each other- isn't this the whole point of College Hockey, Inc.? Wouldn't the sport be better off if that organization was proactively helping to rescue three extant college programs, either by brokering a scheduling deal, or helping raise money to subsidize travel, or whatever, rather than sponsoring "feasibility studies" at schools that will never start hockey that end up lining the pockets of consulting firms with high level ties to College Hockey, Inc.?

Shirtless Guy
07-03-2019, 11:51 AM
Right, I think we are saying the same thing. The WCHA added the Alaskas and UAH not because they particularly wanted to be in a conference with those three schools, but because no one else wanted to be in a conference with them, either, and the WCHA was the last dance partner to fill out their dance card. There's just as much (technical) room in the NCHC or Big 10 to add schools. I think it's fair for the rest of the WCHA to say "If there's anyone out there this matters to, help out. If not, we've done what we can do."

And, to the point below that there's no "College Hockey" monolith and that there are just 60 schools orbiting around each other- isn't this the whole point of College Hockey, Inc.? Wouldn't the sport be better off if that organization was proactively helping to rescue three extant college programs, either by brokering a scheduling deal, or helping raise money to subsidize travel, or whatever, rather than sponsoring "feasibility studies" at schools that will never start hockey that end up lining the pockets of consulting firms with high level ties to College Hockey, Inc.?

College Hockey Inc exists as a loophole to deal with kids in Canada and Major Jr concerns so those kids have a place to go to get their info and reach out before they lose NCAA eligibility.

bravohankins
07-03-2019, 11:52 AM
And, to the point below that there's no "College Hockey" monolith and that there are just 60 schools orbiting around each other- isn't this the whole point of College Hockey, Inc.? Wouldn't the sport be better off if that organization was proactively helping to rescue three extant college programs, either by brokering a scheduling deal, or helping raise money to subsidize travel, or whatever, rather than sponsoring "feasibility studies" at schools that will never start hockey that end up lining the pockets of consulting firms with high level ties to College Hockey, Inc.?

+1 on that.

AMC
07-03-2019, 11:54 AM
College Hockey Inc exists as a loophole to deal with kids in Canada and Major Jr concerns so those kids have a place to go to get their info and reach out before they lose NCAA eligibility.

http://www.collegiateconsulting.com/news/collegiate-consulting-completes-five-nhl-funded-hockey-feasibility-studies


Atlanta-based Collegiate Consulting recently completed a unique, six-month study for five universities as part of an effort by the National Hockey League (NHL), the National Hockey League Players’ Assocation (NHLPA) and College Hockey, Inc., to expand college hockey.

They also exist as a funnel to move NHL money to Collegiate Consulting, apparently.

Shirtless Guy
07-03-2019, 11:56 AM
http://www.collegiateconsulting.com/news/collegiate-consulting-completes-five-nhl-funded-hockey-feasibility-studies



They also exist as a funnel to move NHL money to Collegiate Consulting, apparently.

sure, thats relatively new, it was founded out of a need to allow contact to circumvent NCAA rules because of MJ issues which are unique to college hockey.