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Ferris Falls Off the Cliff

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(General disclaimer that the PWR is a garbage math system based on arbitrary, artificial cliffs and poor logic. It sucks, but it's the system that's going to be used, regardless of how illogical it may be.)

As if losing their third straight game--and getting shutout for the second time in that stretch--wasn't bad enough for Ferris State, the Bulldogs started the night on the cusp of a number one seed in the NCAA tournament, sitting at 5th in the Pairwise Rankings, and ended the night at number 12 in the PWR and now looking like they'll be fighting on the bubble to get into the NCAA tournament.

Why the drop? Because after their game against Michigan tonight, Ferris State reached the magical(and artificial) ten game minimum against Teams Under Consideration for that category to count in each individual PWR comparison. Despite their excellent record, the Bulldogs are a woeful 2-6-2 against TUCs this year, which caused them to drop a number of comparisons.

Meanwhile, St. Cloud won their seventh straight game tonight, to move them up to 4th in the PWR and in position for a first seed in the NCAA. They've gone through a pretty soft stretch of schedule, but they've taken care of business and put themselves in a good position for the stretch run. It's pretty impressive that the WCHA currently has three number one seeds in the tournament. It's still early and WCHA teams have a tendency to bring each other down in the second half of the season because it's hard for teams to run off long winning streaks, but after tomorrow night, the only games between those three teams is a series between St. Cloud and Wisconsin, and sitting right behind those three in 5th and 6th in the PWR are Bemidji State and Minnesota-Duluth.

Also streaking is Michigan, who hasn't lost in four games now, and have gone from not even being a Team Under Consideration to 16th in the PWR and on the bubble for the tournament.

The tournament bubble will be interesting to watch, especially because just where the bubble is won't be known until pretty late in the season. Currently, one CHA team, Bemidji State, and one ECAC team, Union, reside within the top 15 of the PWR(no one from Atlantic Hockey has hope of an at-large bid, so their autobid winner will take one spot), meaning that if they didn't win their conference's tournament, they'd still get an at-large bid, and someone from outside the top 15 would take away an at-large spot. And for our sake, let's all pray Bemidji wins their conference tournament. No disrespect to the CHA, but a four-team conference, that only has one team in the top 40 of the country by RPI, probably doesn't deserve two NCAA bids. The ECAC is still up in the air, with Union a game or two from being on the outside looking in, and Yale and Cornell being very close to at-large territory. It could be that winning the ECAC tournament at the end of the year provides enough PWR boost to move one team into the top 15, and the other teams out.