I’ve seen more OSU hockey games in the last two years than I’ve seen in the last twenty years… When Barry was young, I used to take him to Ohio Stadium for football games, and we would walk by the OSU Ice Arena. I would always tell him with pride about the many hours that I spent sweating in that arena, and he would reply: “come on dad, we’ve got to get to the football stadium.” It’s an ironic turn of events that Barry was asked to do color commentary on radio for one of the OSU hockey games a week ago.
Barry recently gave me the roster and stats information that he had for the game against Miami of Ohio. I decided to check out the roster and I was truly amazed how things have changed since I played at OSU more than 25 years ago… First, the Buckeyes are carrying 28 players on the roster, which is 5 players more than usual. Second, nearly 80% of the players are American and 9 are from Ohio (in my day, less than 20% of the players on the team were from the US). Third, many of the players come from developmental leagues (3 players from the NAHL. see previous posting), which was unheard of when I played collegiate hockey.
One characteristic I noticed about the OSU roster is that they have many small players and lack any real “bruisers” (this was also evident when I recently watched them play in Dayton). Evidently, the star player for the Buckeyes is Tom Fritsche, who has an older brother playing in the NHL with the Columbus Blue Jackets.
The Central Collegiate Hockey Association has also changed from my days. They now have teams that I never associated with hockey such as Alaska (why?), Notre Dame, and Nebraska-Omaha.
College hockey has certainly evolved…