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First Poll Released

US College Hockey Online has released their first poll for the 2006-2007 season. Polls like this are especially meaningless in college hockey since the NCAA tourney is decided by glorious mathematics, but it's still fun to take a look at.

Here's the poll, along with my comments.

1 Wisconsin (17) I have to say that I strongly disagree with the idea that last year's national champion has to start the season ranked number one. Each year is its own seperate entity. No team roster is exactly the same as it was last year. We're starting anew, and saying Wisconsin is number one because they were number one at the end of last year makes as much sense as voting Michigan Tech number one because they won the title in 1965.

1 Boston College (10) Probably the best team in the East, which is good for something, I guess. I ruined the final year of college for both Al Montoya and Dave Caruso by drafting them with my first pick in Fantasy College Hockey. This year's victim is Corey Schneider.

3 Minnesota ( 5) They would have been my choice for number one in the poll.

4 Boston University ( 3) Three people out there honestly believe this is the best team in the country right now? They belong in the top 10, maybe even top five, but best overall seems like a stretch.

5 Michigan State ( 1) This looks about right to me.

6 North Dakota ( 1) I expect North Dakota to be in the top 5 by the end of the season.
7 Michigan ( 2) Michigan will end up either five spots higher or five spots lower than this ranking.

8 Miami Recent history suggests that Miami won't be anywhere near this high by the end of the season, but I expect a different CCHA team to be ranked this high. Since I picked Lake State to finish second, I should probably say it will be them.

9 Denver Again, if I picked them to finish second, I should probably say they'll end up ranked even higher.

10 New Hampshire Sure.

11 Maine Ok.

12 Harvard Mmmhmm.

13 Cornell Probably.

14 Colgate ( 1) Wha??? Somebody gave them a first place vote? I mean, I had Colgate at number two on my ballot, but first? That's just cockamamie.

15 Colorado College CC got ranked almost purely for past reputation. Looking at who they bring back, and who some of the teams below them have coming back, there's no way they should be this high.

16 St. Cloud State I'd throw them in the middle of that glut of Eastern teams on my poll. They're a little low here, but not too bad.

17 Ohio State Either the voters are banking on Ohio State recovering this season, or they started running out of teams to rank. I don't think they'll stay ranked for long.

18 Dartmouth Yet another example of why this is the Western College Hockey Blog, and not College Hockey Blog.

19 Northern Michigan Northern are veterans of the bottom of the poll. They'll probably hang around here all season.

20 Clarkson Nick Dodge! Ha, I can name one of their players. And on the first try too.
Others Receiving Votes: Nebraska-Omaha 83, Providence 61, Minnesota-Duluth 59, Vermont 45, Bemidji State 34, St. Lawrence 31, Holy Cross 28, Notre Dame 18, Lake Superior 11, Niagara 11, Mercyhurst 7, Quinnipiac 7, Massachusetts 5, Ferris State 4, Alaska 3, Sacred Heart 3, Alaska-Anchorage 2, Mass.-Lowell 1

Western Michigan, Bowling Green, Michigan Tech, and Minnesota State were the only CCHA/WCHA schools not to receive votes. I have no idea who voted for Anchorage. Not that they can't work their way up that high, but it's optimistic to say the least to put them there right now.

Things seem pretty open right now. There seem to be a couple very good teams, but nobody looks like they're going to run away with things. It's just another reason to get excited for the season.