As the chatter and rumors continue to grow on the ECAC Northeast becoming the Commonwealth Coast Conference within two years, many people do not realize including Athletic Directors and Coaches how much this could affect the landscape of college hockey on the east coast. So let's break down some scenarios. If the CCC forms within the next two years then you have what looks to be at least 6 teams and because the rumor mill out there is waiting on two years because that is when UNE is finished with there two year schedule, which was just completed during this season and speculation is believed that you need to tell the conference two years in advance if you are leaving the ECAC East so after all of this speculation and whispering you will have:
UNE or is at least believed will make the jump.
Who may or may this impact? - Of Course this would leave out Suffolk, Becker, and Johnson & Wales which would either have to find a new conference or maybe the powers to be in the mighty CCC would allow them to become affiliate members which has been rumored would happen.
With UNE out of the East it leaves just 7 members and if UNE leaves then I am not quite sure if Southern Maine sticks around in the EAST because if they finally gets smart and join the MASCAC they would be very competitive. For Umass Boston, after being left out of the NCAA's without an at-large bid, it continues to baffle me why they would stay in the East when they would clearly be the best team in the MASCAC and would begin some heated in-state rivalries. Clearly playing the Div. II's in their conference did not help them during the at-large selection process. So if UNE goes to the CCC, does USM and or UMB go to the MASCAC and that would leave the East with just 5 conference members - Norwich, New England College, Babson, Skidmore, and Castleton bare in mind that Castleton could also apply and would be eligible for the membership to the MASCAC as well. By now you must have noticed that Saint Anselm's and St. Michael's are not in the mix because based on last summers decision to petition, and make an argument for the schools out west that they do not play against D2 schools which gives the east easy wins that count towards their schedule and rankings where they are not afforded that luxury which hurts them come NCAA selection time.
What is amazing to me is that the CCC could very well be created and could destroy two ECAC conferences in the process, I am sure that the ECAC is aware of this and is making arrangements to protect themselves by giving there teams some insurance so their conference numbers will continue to be strong it would make the most sense to invite JWU, Becker, Suffolk, and Daniel Webster into the league just to soften the blow when Saint Anselm's, St. Michaels, UNE and possibly even Southern Maine all go away. It could certainly become a mess which could easily be avoided if AD's and coaches are pro-active in keeping the East's numbers strong.
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