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Thread: UNH Wildcats 2019 Offseason - How Much Progress Did We Really Make This Past Season?

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by e.cat View Post
    Regarding Gildon, I guess you're right. Would love it if he gave UNH one more year. Seen this movie before. All too often it seems like guys languish when they leave early and end up in the ECHL and/or Europe. Maybe not so much for defensemen. We'll see!

    As far as Souza is concerned, I'm willing to give him two more years.
    I predict that MS gets many more than the next two years as UNH HC, regardless how the team performs. But, too early for an over/under contest. :-)

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    Quote Originally Posted by e.cat View Post
    My son-in-law is a super in Mass. I'll be playing at his course by tax day which is the 17th BTW! :-)
    Gannon G.C. in Lynn might open this Thursday. The sun and the wind has dried things out quickly around here. But honestly, March golf is rarely pleasant. Considering that I had a scope done on my left knee three weeks ago, I’ll probably wait until after I get back from the FF.

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    Re: UNH Wildcats 2019 Offseason - How Much Progress Did We Really Make This Past Seas

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg Ambrose View Post
    Gannon G.C. in Lynn might open this Thursday. The sun and the wind has dried things out quickly around here. But honestly, March golf is rarely pleasant. Considering that I had a scope done on my left knee three weeks ago, I’ll probably wait until after I get back from the FF.
    Good idea. Took me about six weeks to recover from that...no reason to rush and then miss more of the season...

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    Re: UNH Wildcats 2019 Offseason - How Much Progress Did We Really Make This Past Seas

    Chuck, I just turned 71 last week. Same age as Bobby Orr btw. Personally, I don’t think we have any choice but to be patient. The program has been in the dumpster for the last five or six years. Kids being recruited now weren’t even born the last time UNH was in the FF. We are not relevant! When you are starting from scratch you’re just not going to pull the rabbit out of your hat who’s going to present you with three top draft choices. Carvel did it, of course, and I am sure Dan will mention that. But how many programs go from worst to first in three years? And I will say the recruiting landscape has changed. There are fewer high quality players in college hockey now compared to 15 or 20 years ago. Back then every team in HE had a couple of pretty good guys. Nowadays the bottom half of the league is filled with kids who just skate up and down the ice with little creativity in their game. And it goes without saying that , if you happen to land a couple of blue chippas, they’ll be gone in a year or two. Personally, I don’t think it is the way to build a program that can be sustained. You primarily need kids who are going to be invested in the program and the school. Sprinkle a couple in who might leave and maybe you’ll win. Just not as easy as some people want to make it IMO.

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    Quote Originally Posted by chickod View Post
    Good idea. Took me about six weeks to recover from that...no reason to rush and then miss more of the season...
    My PT is reinforcing that message every time I see her. Believe it or not, I’m taking her advice. Icing right now as I type!

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    Re: UNH Wildcats 2019 Offseason - How Much Progress Did We Really Make This Past Seas

    Quote Originally Posted by e.cat View Post
    Regarding Gildon, I guess you're right. Would love it if he gave UNH one more year. Seen this movie before. All too often it seems like guys languish when they leave early and end up in the ECHL and/or Europe. Maybe not so much for defensemen. We'll see!

    As far as Souza is concerned, I'm willing to give him two more years.
    Yeah, I get that. I wouldn't worry about the ECHL with Gildon - and I dont think there is much doubt he gets a crack at the NHL within a few years (at most). Its more about what kind of development will allow him to have an extended career and what kind of player he can be when he gets there. The two most likely outcomes are probably long-term NHL defenseman or a few years (perhaps up and down - worst case) and then off to Europe. I'm not sure another year of college really factors into it as much as how hard he works at developing the areas of his game that need the work. I think FLA is a good situation for him, because they need young talent on the blue line. All of that said, I'd love to watch him one more year in Durham, too. I just don't see it happening...
    Last edited by Dan; 03-18-2019 at 03:53 PM.
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    Re: UNH Wildcats 2019 Offseason - How Much Progress Did We Really Make This Past Seas

    Quote Originally Posted by Snively65 View Post
    I predict that MS gets many more than the next two years as UNH HC, regardless how the team performs. But, too early for an over/under contest. :-)
    Biggest fear. Should be on everyone's radar. This is a very possible reality with Scarano as the AD - look at the Basketball coach...
    Last edited by Dan; 03-18-2019 at 03:53 PM.
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    Re: UNH Wildcats 2019 Offseason - How Much Progress Did We Really Make This Past Seas

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg Ambrose View Post
    My PT is reinforcing that message every time I see her. Believe it or not, I’m taking her advice. Icing right now as I type!
    I've had three of those done. Inflammation causes more damage than anything else in the body. Keep icing! And get that range of motion back (build up the quads to stabilize the knee). And good luck!

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    Re: UNH Wildcats 2019 Offseason - How Much Progress Did We Really Make This Past Seas

    Quote Originally Posted by Snively65 View Post
    I predict that MS gets many more than the next two years as UNH HC, regardless how the team performs. But, too early for an over/under contest. :-)
    Quote Originally Posted by Dan View Post
    Biggest fear. Should be on everyone's radar. This is a very possible reality with Scarano as the AD - look at the Basketball coach...
    This has been scaring the crap out of me since the day "The Plan" was hatched almost 4 years ago now.

    I just want to see tangible progress, improved results, and sooner rather that later.

    I can't begin to tell you how disappointed I was with this past weekend ...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck Murray View Post
    This has been scaring the crap out of me since the day "The Plan" was hatched almost 4 years ago now.

    I just want to see tangible progress, improved results, and sooner rather that later.

    I can't begin to tell you how disappointed I was with this past weekend ...
    Chuck, you have to be kidding me. You may recall that you were the only one on this forum who thought that UMass, as a newbie powerhouse, wouldn’t be ready for the playoffs. I think you can take solace in the fact that the first game went to double OT, but the fact is that UMass advancing was never in doubt. In fact, now that they got slapped in the face in that first game, they’ll probably win HE.

    I think you have to face reality that UNH is nowhere near ready to compete with complete teams. In HE, there were two IMO, UMass and Northeastern. The fact is that they hung with Providence, did not lose to Lowell, and beat and tied BC. I firmly believe that, if they had converted a couple of those ties into wins and grabbed the seventh spot, they would have taken PC to a third game and might have beaten them. How would you have viewed the team then?

    A dose of realism is what you should be prescribed. Check with your doctor.

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    Re: UNH Wildcats 2019 Offseason - How Much Progress Did We Really Make This Past Seas

    I'm kind of confused and am hesitant about writing this post...but here goes. I think what I'm confused about Chuck (and with all due respect) is pretty much throughout the entire season you've been fairly upbeat and positive about the team and Souza. So the turnaround now is...Souza's not the guy? Ending too much like the past. (Which, isn't fun and I can't blame you for the comparison) Am I reading this right? I don't want to open up a can of worms (which I probably have done). I mean, I'm disappointed as well about the weekend but also realistic about the way things went.

    Not to be a blowhard about this, but I've been to my usual boat load of games this season. Obviously I don't know everything about the nuances of the college hockey world but I can say, I've seen the coaching staff in action on several occasions. I've listened to almost every presser this season. I've heard all 3 coaches speak in person on a few opps through FOH. And I've seen the players response to them. It's been very encouraging and positive. I would think there is a big learning curve being HC and I think Souza deserves his chance. I don't care what level you are coaching at taking over for someone, especially someone who's been there for long time, the first year is almost a wash as you establish yourself. But his first year out one thing that's all his doing is that in most games, it's been a much different vibe with this team on the ice and that's been the best part.

    I would agree that we have a lot of work to do there is no question about that and I doubt anyone would disagree. That said, performance matters and I'm expecting this program to move even more in the right direction. If it doesn't...that will be a major disappointment. I guess my main point is..he needs more time to show he can right this ship which has already made a significant amount of progress. I thought initially most here would be thrilled to make the playoffs. We did that. At least, we did that. The shock/outrage at the outcome I'm sorry is just a little surprising esp when we didn't have 2 major forwards (Naz and Grasso) playing Sat. night, and given the opponent. PC would've been a different story...

    Finally, I think being 100% in charge is far different than being an Assistant HC. If I can tell anything about Mike Souza, he wants to be right in the thick of it, win titles, and bring UNH back to prominence. He is totally 100% compassionate about that. I believe he has the convictions necessary and I hope, he has the support he deserves from the University to make those a reality. Players are fortunate to play for him I think. And I am not making any excuses for him or his staff it's just the way I see it.

    I will say the arrival of Tim Stutzle will be huge, and, I'm really hoping/expecting that to happen. These are just my views on the post mortem of the season. Still pretty raw for me!! Soliloquy over...
    Last edited by HockeyRef; 03-20-2019 at 09:20 AM.
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    Re: UNH Wildcats 2019 Offseason - How Much Progress Did We Really Make This Past Seas

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg Ambrose View Post
    Chuck, you have to be kidding me. You may recall that you were the only one on this forum who thought that UMass, as a newbie powerhouse, wouldn’t be ready for the playoffs. I think you can take solace in the fact that the first game went to double OT, but the fact is that UMass advancing was never in doubt. In fact, now that they got slapped in the face in that first game, they’ll probably win HE.

    I think you have to face reality that UNH is nowhere near ready to compete with complete teams. In HE, there were two IMO, UMass and Northeastern. The fact is that they hung with Providence, did not lose to Lowell, and beat and tied BC. I firmly believe that, if they had converted a couple of those ties into wins and grabbed the seventh spot, they would have taken PC to a third game and might have beaten them. How would you have viewed the team then?

    A dose of realism is what you should be prescribed. Check with your doctor.
    OK, let me clarify this (again) … I know, sometimes it's easier to jump to broad conclusions and skip over the details, which is exactly what you've done here, Greg. I'll bullet-point this for you (and others) so you understand my concerns with how things went this past weekend, and my expectations going in.

    * I did NOT expect UNH to win the series (I said there was a 20% likelihood of it happening);
    * IF there was any chance of UNH winning the series, I said they'd have to win the first game;
    * I DID expect UMass to come out as less than a dominant force (down 3-0 late in the second);
    * IF that did actually transpire (it did), then UNH had a chance to make a series of it (they didn't).

    So if you're going to be at all fair about any aspect of this discussion, let's start with that foundation, instead of silly stuff you're assuming because you can't be bothered to sweat the details.

    Now … from that point, where UNH finds itself ahead 3-0 with a minute left to play in the 2nd period Friday night, THAT'S where my concerns start. You give ANY team a 3-goal cushion that late in a game, and I don't care if it's a #1 seed vs. a #8 seed, two teams with equally modest postseason experience … you have every right to expect that team to win that game.

    Agree or disagree? Yes or no? It's not a hard question.

    My answer is, YES, you have every right to expect UNH wins that game from that game situation. Is it a 100% lock? No, I get that. But is it an 80% or 90% lock? YES. I don't have the patience to run stats on that, but in the low-scoring proposition that D-1 hockey has been for many years now (and I think you've said that numerous times on here, Greg), something has to go horribly wrong to lose a game when you're 3 goals up at the tail end of the second period. It happens, yeah, but not too often.

    So, it happened on Friday night. Maybe you say "unlucky" and/or "Well played, UMass"? Maybe I say that too … except there's this long, nagging (and continuing) history of postseason folds by UNH. So you keep hoping for the best, and lining up excuses for what now seems inevitable, while I keep my proverbial powder dry to see how UNH reacts to Friday night's loss, knowing as well as most of you that UNH's best chance flew the coop when they couldn't hold a multi-goal lead on Friday night.

    Saturday night comes … and what happens? The other staple of UNH Postseason Past, which is the "no-show blowout". Check the rest of the postseason games across D-1 this past weekend (go on, I haven't, so I may be dead wrong) and tell me please, how many other games featured a team going down 4-0 in about 15 minutes' time? Again, we've all seen this movie before. Postseason is tough, because everyone knows what's on the line, no one wants their season to end early. But we get deja vu.

    So, to wrap up a season where I think we all reveled in the new experience of someone new in charge for the first time in over a generation, what do we end up with?

    Two colossal negative examples of what we'd all hoped we'd never ever see at UNH again.

    So yeah, "disappointed" only scratches the surface on how I feel after this past weekend.

    I'm not going anywhere, I'm "UNH-'til-I-die" and I'll be back, again hoping for the best next Fall, and chipping in with things as the post-season plays out, like always. No one is calling for MS7's job at this point, but he had a great chance to start with a clean slate this postseason, and really set himself apart from his predecessor's spotty post-season legacy … instead, he just dredged up the same old crap we've been fed for far too long. If you're OK with it, then good for you. I'm not. JMHO.
    Last edited by Chuck Murray; 03-19-2019 at 12:02 PM.
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    Re: UNH Wildcats 2019 Offseason - How Much Progress Did We Really Make This Past Seas

    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck Murray View Post
    Now … from that point, where UNH finds itself ahead 3-0 with a minute left to play in the 2nd period Friday night, THAT'S where my concerns start. You give ANY team a 3-goal cushion that late in a game, and I don't care if it's a #1 seed vs. a #8 seed, two teams with equally modest postseason experience … you have every right to expect that team to win that game.

    Agree or disagree? Yes or no? It's not a hard question.
    Chuck, once again you are fixated on UMass' lack of playoff experience when you say "two teams with equally modest postseason experience." completely ignoring the fact that one team was vastly superior in all phases of the game than the other. If UNH had a three goal lead with a minute to go in the second at Providence, should I expect them to win? Well yeah, because from February 1st on, Providence average just over 2 goals per game at home. But against UMass, well no. As Dan noted in a prior post a couple of weeks ago, Robinson's goals against average against UMass and Northeastern was double what it was against every other team he faced. The only reason UNH was ahead 3-0 last Friday night was because Robinson had made 25 saves in a shade under 40 minutes. I wasn't at the game and did not watch on Hockey East's bogus playoff channel, but my cousin, who is a UMass season ticket holder, kept texting me that Robinson was keeping UNH in the game. When UMass finally broke through with that first goal, I knew it was only a matter of time before they won. And why? Because, despite the fact that their playoff experience was equal to UNH's, they were a lot, lot better than UNH and, you forgot this, they were playing at home.

    As I said earlier, it is too bad UNH didn't convert a couple of those ties into wins because, if they had, they would have indeed played Providence and might have won. And, if they were in the Garden this coming Friday Chuck, what would be your take of how they did this year?

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    Re: UNH Wildcats 2019 Offseason - How Much Progress Did We Really Make This Past Seas

    Quote Originally Posted by NCAA watcher View Post
    So.Crookshank---So. Pierson ---Jr.Kelleher
    Sr. BVR --------Sr.Blackburn ----Sr.Grasso
    Fr.Stevenson---So.Engaras------Jr.MacAdams
    So.Esposito----Fr._________----Sr.Fregona
    Sr.Sacco-------So.Cipollone-----Jr.Sato

    Jr.Gildon--------Sr.Wyse
    Jr.Maass--------Fr.Ericksson
    So.MacKinnon -So.Verrier
    Sr.Dawson------So.Hickey

    Jr.Robinson-----So.Taylor---Sr.Lazzaro
    Souza year end presser. Mentioned Stevenson, can't comment on kids who haven't signed (Eriksson?). "Bringing in 4 or 5" freshmen. Guys are on the road right now so its a fluid situation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NCAA watcher View Post
    Souza year end presser. Mentioned Stevenson, can't comment on kids who haven't signed (Eriksson?). "Bringing in 4 or 5" freshmen. Guys are on the road right now so its a fluid situation.
    And...Wyse and Gildon will return for next season!!!! YESSSS!!!!

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    Re: UNH Wildcats 2019 Offseason - How Much Progress Did We Really Make This Past Seas

    Quote Originally Posted by HockeyRef View Post
    And...Wyse and Gildon will return for next season!!!! YESSSS!!!!
    "Max is planning to be back."

    Pretty exciting, but still a bit open-ended. I will still sweat out summer camp in FLA and the Panther's opinion, but certainly great (and surprising) news. He is not even 20 years old, so I suppose there really isn't a rush. I would guess they had an idea he wanted to stay and that is what resulted in Lucas Bahn no longer being committed. A recruiting class of 4-5 could mean some open slots for currently uncommitted players...

    Stevenson and Eriksson seem like locks to arrive in Durham. I'd guess that Connor Sweeney will also sign. McElhaney is probably 50-50, with eight defenseman already on the roster, and they may feel he'd benefit from actually getting to play a year in the USHL. A fifth-spot could represent A LOT of different scenarios (most likely a young forward in the pipeline or a new F commitment - Budy! Budy! Budy!)...

    Also mentioned next year's manageable non-conference schedule...

    @Miami (!!) - I will be doing everything I can to make this series.
    @Army
    Michigan
    @ Belfast (Northeastern & Colgate/Princeton)
    @ Bentley
    Brown
    Dartmouth

    ---

    As things stand right now - the best UNH Roster in a long time will skate next season. How far up the ladder can they climb? Can the capitalize in recruiting?


    Crookshank - Pierson - Kelleher
    BVR - Blackburn - Grasso
    Stevenson - Engaras - Fregona
    Esposito - Sacco - MacAdams
    ----
    Cipollone - Sweeney - Sato


    Wyse - Gildon
    MacKinnon - Maass
    Verrier - Eriksson
    Dawson
    ----
    Hickey


    Robinson
    Taylor
    ----
    Lazarro
    Last edited by Dan; 03-20-2019 at 03:32 PM.
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    Re: UNH Wildcats 2019 Offseason - How Much Progress Did We Really Make This Past Seas

    Quote Originally Posted by HockeyRef View Post
    Finally, I think being 100% in charge is far different than being an Assistant HC. If I can tell anything about Mike Souza, he wants to be right in the thick of it, win titles, and bring UNH back to prominence. He is totally 100% compassionate about that. I believe he has the convictions necessary and I hope, he has the support he deserves from the University to make those a reality. Players are fortunate to play for him I think. And I am not making any excuses for him or his staff it's just the way I see it.
    Maybe that's more of the problem, I believe the time is long overdue to be looking at the other MS, and his role and lack of leadership in the debacle of the past decade (basketball and football included in that).
    GO BLUE!

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    Quote Originally Posted by NCAA watcher View Post
    Souza year end presser. Mentioned Stevenson, can't comment on kids who haven't signed (Eriksson?). "Bringing in 4 or 5" freshmen. Guys are on the road right now so its a fluid situation.
    If bringing in 4 or 5, which 2 or 3 non-seniors not returning?

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    Quote Originally Posted by d.gerry View Post
    maybe that's more of the problem, i believe the time is long overdue to be looking at the other ms, and his role and lack of leadership in the debacle of the past decade (basketball and football included in that).
    Blue Skies 35+8?

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    Re: UNH Wildcats 2019 Offseason - How Much Progress Did We Really Make This Past Seas

    Quote Originally Posted by Snively65 View Post
    Blue Skies 35+8?
    I wanna know what MS7 stands for...
    Let's Go SouzaCats!

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