Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Figuring Out Fairbanks' Roster

Looking at the University of Alaska roster is like trying is like trying to decipher the scorecard of a 12-inning National League baseball game. Names are crossed out, switched, added in. Who could have guessed that going through three coaches in three years would lead to such turmoil?

Danny Martin of the Daily News-Miner tried to wade through the mess.

The biggest news that wasn't already known is that Nathan Lawrence left the program for "financial reasons". Lawrence--along with Landon Novotney, who also left during the summer--was one of Alaska's most promising freshmen last season. The team also lost one of their top recruits in forward Jordan VanGilder, who will instead play another year of junior hockey and look for options elsewhere.

The article also confirms the pretty poorly kept secret that Simon Olsson and Jordie Benn weren't able to qualify academically to play NCAA hockey.

All in all, it looks like it is shaping up to be a very rough first year for new coach Dallas Ferguson.


Far North said...

It's hard to feel optimistic when you look at all the key players the Nanooks have lost. Still, I think Alaska could do a lot better than predicted, mostly because the guys seem to trust the coaching. Also, some of the veterans are top-quality in terms of character, which should help.

With so few "stars" on the team, I think it will come down to quickly the newcomers adapt and how well the team gels. Good team chemistry can make up for a lot.

Anonymous said...

On Hockeycentral today, which is a noon hour radio show here in Toronto, hosts Daren Millard and Mike Brophy said there were rumblings that Erik Johnson was hurt while playing "golf cart polo" and that there was a collision of some kind. Presumably while two or more carts pursued the same ball ...

Did he learn that playing College Hockey??

Great stuff!!!

dggoddard said...

You learn not to play Golf Cart Polo during your third year of college. We can hardly be responsible for his conduct if he doesn't complete his degree.

Last Frontiersman said...

Jordan VanGilder say yes to Fairbanks until he visits the city, then changes his mind. Classic. Surprised more players don't do the same. I don't know how they get any good talent up in that frigid barren city.

Anonymous said...

And now VanGilder has been traded down to the NAHL from the USHL. Was it a bad move backing out?