College hockey conferences and their individual programs have spent the summer coming up with various contingency plans for the now-delayed college hockey season. With so much still unknown, leagues have understandably been very quiet on what those various contingency plans might entail. But as we move closer to a potential start to the season, some of those plans are starting to leak out.
Mike McMahon of College Hockey News reported on a potential plan for the ECAC last night:
The ECAC is planning on a 20-game schedule. Teams will be broken into a New England division (Princeton, Yale, Brown, Harvard, Dartmouth and QU) and a New York division (Cornell, Clarkson, Colgate, RPI, Union, SLU). 4 games vs. each division opponent. NO games vs. other division.— Mike McMahon (@MikeMcMahonCHN) September 25, 2020
It makes sense for the league to separate itself in this way, both in terms of limiting travel and because New York state has been extremely strict in regulations regarding Covid-19 after being hit hard in the early stages of the pandemic.
The insular nature of the schedule also eliminates some headaches if one team, or a group of teams in a specific area has to suspend play, either for their own outbreak or an outbreak in their area.
As has been our refrain for a while now, this won’t look anything like a regular college hockey season. But at least it provides a road map for some sort of competition this season.