Yesterday, the Big Ten unveiled its end of the season awards. Today it's our turn to give out conference awards.
Initially, I was going to have two parts. One being my first, second and all-rookie teams and the other being made up of individual awards. That's still the plan, however instead of just listing my teams for this part, which I did mid-season, I invited five other writers to make their own so we can have a bigger consensus. These writers range from covering the league nationally to teams, going from one end of the conference to the other.
Is there still bias? Might be, but not compared to just my own teams. I tried to make sure that it wasn't just a group of Michigan writers or Minnesota writers. Still, it's still only six. In the event of a tie, my pick was taken out to break the tie. If that didn't work both players were named (which happened in one case).
The plan is to unveil these in two parts with the second coming out later tonight or Wednesday morning.
All-Big Ten First Team
F- Ryan Dzingel, Ohio State****
F- Nic Kerdiles, Wisconsin
F- Mark Zengerle, Wisconsin
D- Mike Reilly, Minnesota****
D- Jake McCabe, Wisconsin
G- Adam Wilcox, Minnesota
Received first team votes: JT Compher (Michigan), Mac Bennett (Michigan), Michael Mersch (Wisconsin), Frankie Simonelli (Wisconsin), Joel Rumpel (Wisconsin)
About: This was similar to the conference first team. Two players were unanimously selected and even the one person to vote for Joel Rumpel over Adam Wilcox said that it was by a close margin. The only difference between our group and what the Big Ten released is that Nic Kerdiles handily replaces teammate Michael Mersch despite the latter leading all players in scoring with 20 goals.
All-Big Ten Second Team
F-Michael Mersch, Wisconsin
F-JT Compher, Michigan
F-Kyle Rau, Minnesota
D- Jake Chelios, Michigan State
D- Frankie Simonelli, Wisconsin
D- Mac Bennett, Michigan
G-Joel Rumpel - Wisconsin
Others mentioned: Ben Marshall, Sam Warning, Brady Skjei, Hudson Fasching (all Minnesota)
Note: Frankie Simonelli and Mac Bennett tied
About: Mersch makes it on the second team pretty easily as does freshman JT Compher and junior Kyle Rau. Both of Rau's linemates received votes, but unlike a Ryan Dzingel (who more than one person had as player of the year), Minnesota's scoring depth spread out the votes. Defensemen were tough as no one received more than three votes and two defensemen ended up tying. The biggest issue was finding the balance between shut down and scoring. One person lamented leaving off Skjei because of his six assists. Unfortunately for Jake Hildebrand, who is someone I had in place of Rumpel at the mid-point, no one had him here.
F- JT Compher, Michigan
F- Hudson Fasching, Minnesota***
F- Justin Kloos, Minnesota
D-Michael Downing, Michigan****
D-Drew Brevig, Ohio State
G- Christian Frey, OSU
Others mentioned: Zach Nagelvoort (Michigan), Nick Shilkey (Ohio State), Taylor Cammarata (Minnesota), Mike Williamson (Penn State), David Goodwin (Penn State)
About: First two forwards were easy as Compher (unlike the Big Ten's, he is not unanimous here because someone gave him a first-team vote rather than rookie) leading the Wolverines in points and Fasching's 28 made them tough to say no. Same goes with defensemen as Michael Downing and Drew Brevig were both on all but one list. Penn State makes its first appearance with David Goodwin and Mike Williamson being on lists - Goodwin was said to be a top scorer for PSU one day by one person.
The toughest decision came in net where it was split between Christian Frey and Zach Nagelvoort. Frey's performance was the better, but he was only around for half the year while Nagelvorot was around all year yet hit a wall from a start that I had as the best in the Big Ten midway through the year. Half saw for Frey. Half didn't. Unfortunately for Nagelvoort, I was in the camp that saw for him getting through the entire year and it costs him here.
Nathan Wells is a college hockey columnist for SB Nation. You can also follow him on Twitter -- Follow @gopherstate