Back in April we noted several cities open to hosting future Frozen Fours when the bidding opens for 2019-2022 this fall. Among them are Milwaukee, Omaha and 2016 host Tampa.
Since then more have come to the forefront, led by an old friend with a new arena.
Detroit will be in the bidding for a Frozen Four after not having one for the previous cycle, according to the Detroit Free Press. The city last hosted a Frozen Four in 2010 when the event was held at Ford Field, home of the NFL's Detroit Lions. This time around it would be at Little Caesars Arena, the new Detroit Red Wings arena scheduled to open in fall 2017. Michigan State would co-host the bid along with the Detroit Sports Commission (itself bidding on multiple sports).
From the article:
Michigan State hockey coach Tom Anastos helped bring the Frozen Four to Ford Field when he was the commissioner of the Central Collegiate Hockey Association. He told the Free Press that getting Detroit back in the rotation is important and the Detroit Red Wings' new hockey arena will give them that chance.
Anastos said MSU wanted to host because it has a long relationship with all of the involved parties, "from the Ilitch organization, the Detroit Sports Commission and certainly many of us have been active with the NCAA."
"We just think Detroit and the state of Michigan is one of the best hockey and college hockey markets in the world," Anastos said. "Last time it was here was 2010. We were coming off a very difficult economy. There continues to be an incredible rebirth in the city and the arena will be absolutely spectacular. It makes all the sense in the world. Between the new facility and the city's positioning, we've probably never been in a better position to host this event."
Buffalo will also be submitting a Frozen Four bid this time around. That news was noted by Canisius AD Bill Maher during an interview last month. Last hosting a Frozen Four in 2003, Buffalo was a finalist during the 2015-18 cycle before not being chosen. The city has as of lately become a go-to host for USA Hockey, including hosting both the 2011 and 2018 World Junior Championships. First Niagara Center also hosted the 2016 NHL Draft this past June.
Another 21st Century host getting back in the mix is St. Louis.
@gopherstate UND has paired with St. Louis for a bid, too.— Brad E. Schlossman (@SchlossmanGF) August 23, 2016
The Scottrade Center hosted the 2007 Frozen Four with both the St. Louis Sports Commission and CHA. This time around North Dakota is pairing with St. Louis since the CHA no longer sponsors men's hockey.
Lastly, at least one new area is interested in a regional. WCSH notes that Maine is hoping to host an NCAA East Regional in Portland in either 2019, 2020 or 2021 at 6,500 seat Cross Insurance Arena. The area has not hosted a regional since the field was expanded to 16 teams in 2003. Cross Insurance Arena formerly hosted the AHL Portland Pirates for over two decades until the team relocated to Springfield, MA during this past offseason.
The NCAA is expected to announce the finalists to host championships in all sports, including D1 men's hockey, on October 26th. The winners will be announced on or around December 7th.
Last time the 2015-18 bid process had 15 bids reduced to 10 finalists.
Unofficial Ongoing List:
- Omaha (hosted by Nebraska)
- Detroit (Michigan State)
- St. Louis (North Dakota)
Nathan Wells is a college hockey columnist for SB Nation mostly covering both the University of Minnesota and Big Ten. You can also follow him on Twitter -- Follow @gopherstate