Wednesday, November 26, 2008

UNO's Hot Start

Earlier this year, I noted that Nebraksa-Omaha head coach Mike Kemp was on the hot seat in Omaha, and so far, his team seems to have responded. The Mavericks are 9-2-1, second in the CCHA, with enough games in hand to catch first place Miami. Part of the reason for that, as INCH noted this week, is that both UNO goalies, Jeremie Dupont and Jerad Kaufmann, have GAAs below 2.

It's a great start for UNO, but they've also been relatively untested. Yale is the only team in the four major conferences with a weaker strength of schedule than the Mavericks. The goaltending numbers could be deceiving too. Here's a look at the offenses UNO has face, with national rank--out of 58 teams--in parenthesis.(Numbers are as of last weekend, so they don't take into account games played on Tuesday)

American International(58)
2 vs. Mercyhurst(37)
2 vs. Bowling Green(45)
2 vs. Western Michigan(48)
2 vs. Ferris State(36)
2 vs. Michigan State(54)

So out of 12 games, 11 have been against below-average offensive teams. It will be interesting to see if UNO's goalies can maintain that success once they start playing some better offenses.


gofalcons said...

They only managed a split against BGSU and barely squeaked that out, besides. I wasn't that impressed with them in the one game I saw.

Pretty weak schedule so far. Time will tell.

Rick said...

Certainly the strength of schedule shows in UNO's RPI. I don't think UNO would hold out its weekend at BG as representative, but the argument that they haven't played serious games is fair. They did, however, beat MSU far worse than anyone to date. OSU will be a decent test, as will Alaska. The second half will be where UNO earns its money.