Assuming everything stays the way it currently is--and for the sake of Alabama-Huntsville, most everyone hopes it doesn't--the CCHA will be an 11-team conference next season.
That could potentially create some scheduling problems, since, as WCHA commissioner Bruce McLeod told us all last summer, it is physically impossible to come up with a schedule for 11 teams. It just can't be done.
Except that it turns out that it can be done. The CCHA brought in some outside consultants and came up with an 11-team scheduling system that rotates equally every 8 years. I'm assuming that since we're talking about clusters and not divisions that the clusters rotate every year, but I'm not particularly sure. It is interesting that Big Ten Network considerations were part of putting this together. Unless the CCHA's current TV deal changes, the BTN can't even get half of the Big Ten match-ups since Fox Sports gets first choice of what games they want televised.
All in all, the new schedule doesn't look too bad. It's a tad confusing to figure who plays who four times, but as long as it works, that's all that matters. Still, hopefully the CCHA changes their mind and they can continue on with their current 12-team scheduling format.