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2011 Alaska Nanook Offseason: Wake Me Up When September Ends

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  • Rms123
    replied
    Re: 2011 Alaska Nanook Offseason: Wake Me Up When September Ends

    Originally posted by Wondering View Post
    I'm kind of nervous, frankly. It's hard to know what to expect when one-third of the players (8} are freshmen. I also wonder about the fact that some of them were fairly late additions to the roster -- seems like the coaches typically try to lock up recruits a year or two in advance. Late bloomers, maybe? I'm curious -- have we ever had last-minute acquisitions who turned out to be dominant players? Sincere question. I'd love to have a better understanding of the "best timing" for recruiting players.

    The guys we've lost: seniors Petovello, Molle, Klassen, Hohl and Sather, plus Sova, Slemp, Cardwell and Rundell. Half of them weren't in the lineup most nights, so I don't think our losses are worse than any other year.

    I do, however, think it's vital that the Nanooks have a really good season. Otherwise, the early success under Ferguson looks like a fluke. Recruiting could be an increasing challenge due to the upcoming league shift; we need to be viewed as a team that improves each season.

    Sova is the biggest loss. Everyone else was just role players, that are a dime a dozen. Good players and great guys for sure, but no one form that group (other than maybe Sova) was spectacular. On Fergie…………”Under his tutelage, the Nooks are averaging 17 wins a season (more than any of his seven predecessors) and have hosted and won three consecutive CCHA home playoff series in each of his first three seasons at the helm of his alma mater. He has also led the program to back-to-back Alaska Airlines Governor’s Cup titles and four non-conference tournament titles.”
    Ferguson is no fluke.
    Toranto was a very late addition……I think he qualifies as a dominant player (even with the million injuries he battled last year).
    Keep your chin up! I think we will be a solid team. Just have to find more than one or two guys who can pot some goals.

    Leave a comment:


  • Wondering
    replied
    Re: 2011 Alaska Nanook Offseason: Wake Me Up When September Ends

    I'm kind of nervous, frankly. It's hard to know what to expect when one-third of the players (8} are freshmen. I also wonder about the fact that some of them were fairly late additions to the roster -- seems like the coaches typically try to lock up recruits a year or two in advance. Late bloomers, maybe? I'm curious -- have we ever had last-minute acquisitions who turned out to be dominant players? Sincere question. I'd love to have a better understanding of the "best timing" for recruiting players.

    The guys we've lost: seniors Petovello, Molle, Klassen, Hohl and Sather, plus Sova, Slemp, Cardwell and Rundell. Half of them weren't in the lineup most nights, so I don't think our losses are worse than any other year.

    I do, however, think it's vital that the Nanooks have a really good season. Otherwise, the early success under Ferguson looks like a fluke. Recruiting could be an increasing challenge due to the upcoming league shift; we need to be viewed as a team that improves each season.

    Leave a comment:


  • Rms123
    replied
    Re: 2011 Alaska Nanook Offseason: Wake Me Up When September Ends

    Originally posted by mmf View Post
    *****http://mmf.smugmug.com/Alaska-Nanook-Hockey/Other-Nanook-Hockey-Galleries/Somewhat-Hockey-related-photos/i-zMtSmPT/0/L/20091125-70-L.jpg******

    Finally... time for Nook fans to kick back and have a cold one. All this realignment crap is pretty much settled for the Nooks and we can once again espouse on the optimism of a season yet started.

    And for whatever reason I am optimistic. But I guess that defines a fan. Quite frankly our team under-performed badly last year. With what we have returning and what's coming in, we should be more than solid. We should also be pretty much overlooked in the conference, which is fine by me. We'll probably be ranked in the bottom third of the CCHA.

    I'm not a hockey stats guy. I only look at the basic stuff. We lost five seniors, but only Petovello was top ten in points at 23. The other four combined for 21 total points. Our offensive juggernaut doesn't seem to have taken a hit. We also lost Sova, our number 2 scorer with 24 points. I think we may have lost one or two other non-seniors from last season's roster, but very few points.

    So we have 73% of our scoring returning...talented players that should have better years...and solid and experienced goal-tending that hopefully won't have to shut out an opponent to get a win. We should once again play solid defense, even if it has to suffer somewhat to open up the offense a little (nothing comes without a price). And we have some promising recruits.

    With all the realignment garbage that has going on, I wouldn't be surprised to see all teams play with more of an edge the next two years. I'm already looking forward to our early season non-conference matchups with SCSU, Clarkson, UNO, and Mercyhurst. We'll find out what we're made of early.

    Go Nooks!


    I agree. I will say that I think our D is going to be fast and aggressive. Sova logged a bunch of time, and put up some points, but was slow (seen him beat several times), and not very aggressive. I thought he also turned to puck over a lot (again he logged lots of time). Not trying to put him down, but just pointing out the things that I didn’t like about him. There is no doubt that he is a darn good player, he did go pro after all. I think overall the D will step up, and we won’t notice his absence. Gens and Enders will step up. Throw in Odegard, Quinn, butcher, and a slew of nice recruit, and the D looks good. With our D being quicker, and an already speedy O, I think this should be an exciting team to watch. Just my opinion.

    Leave a comment:


  • mmf
    replied
    Re: 2011 Alaska Nanook Offseason: Wake Me Up When September Ends

    *****http://mmf.smugmug.com/Alaska-Nanook-Hockey/Other-Nanook-Hockey-Galleries/Somewhat-Hockey-related-photos/i-zMtSmPT/0/L/20091125-70-L.jpg******

    Finally... time for Nook fans to kick back and have a cold one. All this realignment crap is pretty much settled for the Nooks and we can once again espouse on the optimism of a season yet started.

    And for whatever reason I am optimistic. But I guess that defines a fan. Quite frankly our team under-performed badly last year. With what we have returning and what's coming in, we should be more than solid. We should also be pretty much overlooked in the conference, which is fine by me. We'll probably be ranked in the bottom third of the CCHA.

    I'm not a hockey stats guy. I only look at the basic stuff. We lost five seniors, but only Petovello was top ten in points at 23. The other four combined for 21 total points. Our offensive juggernaut doesn't seem to have taken a hit. We also lost Sova, our number 2 scorer with 24 points. I think we may have lost one or two other non-seniors from last season's roster, but very few points.

    So we have 73% of our scoring returning...talented players that should have better years...and solid and experienced goal-tending that hopefully won't have to shut out an opponent to get a win. We should once again play solid defense, even if it has to suffer somewhat to open up the offense a little (nothing comes without a price). And we have some promising recruits.

    With all the realignment garbage that has going on, I wouldn't be surprised to see all teams play with more of an edge the next two years. I'm already looking forward to our early season non-conference matchups with SCSU, Clarkson, UNO, and Mercyhurst. We'll find out what we're made of early.

    Go Nooks!

    Leave a comment:


  • Wondering
    replied
    Re: 2011 Alaska Nanook Offseason: Wake Me Up When September Ends

    There's an article about Jordan Hendry today on the Hockey Wilderness site (www.hockeywilderness.com}.

    Leave a comment:


  • Squarebanks
    replied
    Thanks for the pics, mmf. I played in the inaugural Palmer golf fundraiser last year. It was a good time.

    Originally posted by mmf View Post
    Heading down the off-season home stretch. August can be a mixed bag of warmth, wetness, wind, or winter (and that's all on the same day), so get out when you can. I stopped by the Face-Off Club's "14th Annual Alaska Hockey Scramble" on August 6th to take a few pics. Nothing official, I just tried to stay out of folk's way and tried not to intrude too badly.

    It started out a pretty cold and hazy morning. I left about the time the sun started warming things up. If you’re a Nook fan you have to appreciate the time and effort a small but dedicated group of Face-Off Club members put into supporting the team. You also have to appreciate sponsors like Yukon Title and the various hole sponsors for their support.

    If you're a Nook fan, consider joining in and volunteering a little. Nanook Hockey and college hockey in general is in for some big changes in the next couple of years. We expect the team to step their game up notch, so it would be nice to see the fans do the same. Back to the scramble...

    Warming up was mostly a figure of speech...
    *****http://mmf.smugmug.com/Alaska-Nanook-Hockey/Other-Nanook-Hockey-Galleries/14th-Annual-Hockey-Scramble/i-x3CLXbH/0/L/20110806-2-L.jpg******

    But eventually everybody was off and running...
    *****http://mmf.smugmug.com/Alaska-Nanook-Hockey/Other-Nanook-Hockey-Galleries/14th-Annual-Hockey-Scramble/i-5z7SSss/0/L/20110806-102-L.jpg******

    Hoping with a little luck to win a four-wheeler...
    *****http://mmf.smugmug.com/Alaska-Nanook-Hockey/Other-Nanook-Hockey-Galleries/14th-Annual-Hockey-Scramble/i-WQwX2qP/0/L/20110806-146-2-L.jpg******

    Hiding in the bushes was more of a matter of survival and not really artistic expression...
    *****http://mmf.smugmug.com/Alaska-Nanook-Hockey/Other-Nanook-Hockey-Galleries/14th-Annual-Hockey-Scramble/i-X5V2BDx/1/L/20110806-38-L.jpg******

    The Face-Off Club manned the grills and provided the grub...
    *****http://mmf.smugmug.com/Alaska-Nanook-Hockey/Other-Nanook-Hockey-Galleries/14th-Annual-Hockey-Scramble/i-ScgrhvQ/0/L/20110806-58-2-L.jpg******

    And by the looks of things it was appreciated...
    *****http://mmf.smugmug.com/Alaska-Nanook-Hockey/Other-Nanook-Hockey-Galleries/14th-Annual-Hockey-Scramble/i-99DTwDJ/0/L/20110806-97-L.jpg******

    Play continued and the sun started warming things up a little...
    *****http://mmf.smugmug.com/Alaska-Nanook-Hockey/Other-Nanook-Hockey-Galleries/14th-Annual-Hockey-Scramble/i-3Rdg7vT/0/L/20110806-84-L.jpg******

    All-in-all it looked to be a pretty enjoyable and relaxed event...
    *****http://mmf.smugmug.com/Alaska-Nanook-Hockey/Other-Nanook-Hockey-Galleries/14th-Annual-Hockey-Scramble/i-zzRXBDS/0/L/20110806-207-L.jpg******

    And Coach was always there to give sage advice when called upon...
    *****http://mmf.smugmug.com/Alaska-Nanook-Hockey/Other-Nanook-Hockey-Galleries/14th-Annual-Hockey-Scramble/i-pq8WShj/0/L/20110806-214-L.jpg******

    Leave a comment:


  • mmf
    replied
    Re: 2011 Alaska Nanook Offseason: Wake Me Up When September Ends

    Heading down the off-season home stretch. August can be a mixed bag of warmth, wetness, wind, or winter (and that's all on the same day), so get out when you can. I stopped by the Face-Off Club's "14th Annual Alaska Hockey Scramble" on August 6th to take a few pics. Nothing official, I just tried to stay out of folk's way and tried not to intrude too badly.

    It started out a pretty cold and hazy morning. I left about the time the sun started warming things up. If you’re a Nook fan you have to appreciate the time and effort a small but dedicated group of Face-Off Club members put into supporting the team. You also have to appreciate sponsors like Yukon Title and the various hole sponsors for their support.

    If you're a Nook fan, consider joining in and volunteering a little. Nanook Hockey and college hockey in general is in for some big changes in the next couple of years. We expect the team to step their game up notch, so it would be nice to see the fans do the same. Back to the scramble...

    Warming up was mostly a figure of speech...
    *****http://mmf.smugmug.com/Alaska-Nanook-Hockey/Other-Nanook-Hockey-Galleries/14th-Annual-Hockey-Scramble/i-x3CLXbH/0/L/20110806-2-L.jpg******

    But eventually everybody was off and running...
    *****http://mmf.smugmug.com/Alaska-Nanook-Hockey/Other-Nanook-Hockey-Galleries/14th-Annual-Hockey-Scramble/i-5z7SSss/0/L/20110806-102-L.jpg******

    Hoping with a little luck to win a four-wheeler...
    *****http://mmf.smugmug.com/Alaska-Nanook-Hockey/Other-Nanook-Hockey-Galleries/14th-Annual-Hockey-Scramble/i-WQwX2qP/0/L/20110806-146-2-L.jpg******

    Hiding in the bushes was more of a matter of survival and not really artistic expression...
    *****http://mmf.smugmug.com/Alaska-Nanook-Hockey/Other-Nanook-Hockey-Galleries/14th-Annual-Hockey-Scramble/i-X5V2BDx/1/L/20110806-38-L.jpg******

    The Face-Off Club manned the grills and provided the grub...
    *****http://mmf.smugmug.com/Alaska-Nanook-Hockey/Other-Nanook-Hockey-Galleries/14th-Annual-Hockey-Scramble/i-ScgrhvQ/0/L/20110806-58-2-L.jpg******

    And by the looks of things it was appreciated...
    *****http://mmf.smugmug.com/Alaska-Nanook-Hockey/Other-Nanook-Hockey-Galleries/14th-Annual-Hockey-Scramble/i-99DTwDJ/0/L/20110806-97-L.jpg******

    Play continued and the sun started warming things up a little...
    *****http://mmf.smugmug.com/Alaska-Nanook-Hockey/Other-Nanook-Hockey-Galleries/14th-Annual-Hockey-Scramble/i-3Rdg7vT/0/L/20110806-84-L.jpg******

    All-in-all it looked to be a pretty enjoyable and relaxed event...
    *****http://mmf.smugmug.com/Alaska-Nanook-Hockey/Other-Nanook-Hockey-Galleries/14th-Annual-Hockey-Scramble/i-zzRXBDS/0/L/20110806-207-L.jpg******

    And Coach was always there to give sage advice when called upon...
    *****http://mmf.smugmug.com/Alaska-Nanook-Hockey/Other-Nanook-Hockey-Galleries/14th-Annual-Hockey-Scramble/i-pq8WShj/0/L/20110806-214-L.jpg******
    Last edited by mmf; 08-14-2011, 04:42 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • LSSULaker889294
    replied
    Re: 2011 Alaska Nanook Offseason: Wake Me Up When September Ends

    I will be shocked if UAF is rejected by the WCHA. I think UAF will be added as the 7th WCHA member. The 8th member will probably be MSU-Moorhead. If MSU-Moorhead's plans fall through though, the WCHA might just stay at seven teams. I'm hearing the Minnesota schools would dread having to travel to WMU or LSSU.

    Best of luck to you guys.

    Leave a comment:


  • revfnb
    replied
    Re: 2011 Alaska Nanook Offseason: Wake Me Up When September Ends

    I would be pleased if UAF joined the WCHA. The best attendance at UAA is when UAF is in town - plus it is a great rival.

    Leave a comment:


  • Squarebanks
    replied
    Re: 2011 Alaska Nanook Offseason: Wake Me Up When September Ends

    Originally posted by WetSubArticCanine View Post
    I’d be inclined to think that the Nooks are probably 2nd or 3rd on the list for almost all of the WCHA members left on the branch after the tree split. Isn’t the Alaska exemption good for only 2 annual bites of the apple?

    The road distance between Moorhead and Mankato is 271 mi; Saint Cloud, 174 mi; Bemidji, 135 mi. Moorhead to Marquette is 489 mi; Houghton, 452 mi.

    Rather impressed by Moorhead’s presser, as they seem to have a lot of the pieces in place. Shields Arena is ~5,000 seats (all with backs I’m guessing), and the USHL’s Force (~3,500 avg attendance) as tenants. Fargo/Morehead’s population is ~2X metro _airbanks. I quite like their endowment idea. They’ve been seriously after both a men’s and women’s (at Bemidji, Kato, St. Cloud) program for years. The ~3 month’s window for things to shake-out for them seems logical.

    I’d think the left behinds would stay in the bunker until well after the rubble stops bouncing and 7 is about the ideal number of conference members, if these teams want to keep their “traditional” rivalries.

    Not to make rain, but thars all them clouds.
    Quite frankly, we would bring more to the table in the re-constituted WCHA than MSU-Moorhead would. For a conference that is attempting to stay viable on the national scene and avoid becoming what the CCHA is about to, I would think that conference would want to have a well-established program capable of being a strong team year in and year out as opposed to a start-up. And if it comes down to TV eyeballs, I would imagine most folks in the Fargo area are already hooked on the UND wagon. Just my completely biased thoughts, and that's not even getting in to the dollars behind the AK exemption.

    Leave a comment:


  • uaafanblog
    replied
    Re: 2011 Alaska Nanook Offseason: Wake Me Up When September Ends

    Originally posted by WetSubArticCanine View Post
    I’d be inclined to think that the Nooks are probably 2nd or 3rd on the list for almost all of the WCHA members left on the branch after the tree split. Isn’t the Alaska exemption good for only 2 annual bites of the apple?
    Nope. The rule says for "any" contest held in Alaska or Hawaii in which you play and alaskan or hawaiian team.

    Leave a comment:


  • mmf
    replied
    Re: 2011 Alaska Nanook Offseason: Wake Me Up When September Ends

    No doubt an ill wind still blows. Almost nothing would surprise me now. I’m just tired of the unknown.

    Maybe a 7 team conference and non-conf games are where it is at. So teams like Mankato, MTU, NMU, and BSU would have 24 conference games, and possibly 12 non-conf games to schedule. UAA would have 10 non-conf games.

    I have no idea how the financial dealings work with non-conf games. If the aforementioned teams could even get non-conf games with a NCHC or B1G team, who typically covers the cost? Is it the price you pay for agreeing to go to someone’s barn? Is there typically any sharing of the gate? Is there any incentive or need for these power conferences to reciprocate with a return trip to a WCHA barn?

    The only bigger scheduling headache is probably arranging the back-rooms and side-bar discussions that are still going on.

    Leave a comment:


  • WetSubArticCanine
    replied
    Re: 2011 Alaska Nanook Offseason: Wake Me Up When September Ends

    Originally posted by mmf View Post
    ... The MSU-Moorehead plan seems to be ways off, if at all. I don't think the WCHA can wait a year or two before they even decide whose applications to accept (god I hope I'm not wrong). Moorehead would seem to be part of a 9 or 10 team decision when it comes.
    I’d be inclined to think that the Nooks are probably 2nd or 3rd on the list for almost all of the WCHA members left on the branch after the tree split. Isn’t the Alaska exemption good for only 2 annual bites of the apple?

    The road distance between Moorhead and Mankato is 271 mi; Saint Cloud, 174 mi; Bemidji, 135 mi. Moorhead to Marquette is 489 mi; Houghton, 452 mi.

    Rather impressed by Moorhead’s presser, as they seem to have a lot of the pieces in place. Shields Arena is ~5,000 seats (all with backs I’m guessing), and the USHL’s Force (~3,500 avg attendance) as tenants. Fargo/Morehead’s population is ~2X metro _airbanks. I quite like their endowment idea. They’ve been seriously after both a men’s and women’s (at Bemidji, Kato, St. Cloud) program for years. The ~3 month’s window for things to shake-out for them seems logical.

    I’d think the left behinds would stay in the bunker until well after the rubble stops bouncing and 7 is about the ideal number of conference members, if these teams want to keep their “traditional” rivalries.

    Not to make rain, but thars all them clouds.

    Leave a comment:


  • mmf
    replied
    Re: 2011 Alaska Nanook Offseason: Wake Me Up When September Ends

    Originally posted by Squarebanks View Post
    Well...now I'm depressed.
    It's only depressing if the worst case scenario happens. I was just trying make the point that we shouldn't expect to pay less in travel subsidizes in this re-alignment process. Those subsidies and the Alaskan exemption are our bargaining chips.

    I really believe we are a good fit for the WCHA and it makes sense for the conference to include us. But I can understand them getting to the mandatory six teams and holding off until ND makes their decision and most of the remaining dominos fall.

    Another thought is NCHC membership. It sounds idiotic on the surface, but might make a lot of sense to that conference.

    It seems likely that ND will go to the NCHC.

    If the NCHC stays at 7 teams, ND gets their 24 game conference schedule and 10 non-conference games, as they wish. But that’s a lot of non-conf games to schedule for everyone, and some may find it easier than others. The fans of the cellar dwellers in that conference, no matter who they are, won't be happy.

    The NCHC could also pick up WMU as the eighth team, and that gives ND (and everybody else) 28 conference games, but only 6 non-conf games, and just compounds their travel cost concerns. And ND doesn't want just 6 non-conf games. Although WMU is a rejuvenated program, it does give the NCHC a likely whipping boy most years.

    Or the NCHC could take Alaska along with ND. Everyone would get 28 conference games, and ND and everyone but us would get 8 non-conf games, and mostly likely a large part of the travel costs to Alaska paid for. So everybody gets 4 more conf games, and only lose two of their non-conf games. Although a solid program, we too would be a whipping boy most years.

    Although small by many NCHC standards, we would be close to selling out (~4,300) most games. Our facilities and community support aren't lacking. We would probably have to put more resources into recruiting. If we qualify for a share of any tournament revenues (remember – we are from the CCHA so that is almost as mythical as a Seawolf), additional travel incentives and recruiting costs could be less painful for us.

    Talent wise and otherwise we are a better fit with the WCHA. But in the final analysis, we probably fill a niche that benefits the NCHC to some degree, even more than some perceived stronger programs. Not sure if the good outweighs the bad in this arrangement. For them or us...

    But we are just Alaska, and there are some big egos in the NCHC. I'm not sure they could bring themselves to let us mingle with them. But the possibility is intriguing.
    Last edited by mmf; 07-19-2011, 10:11 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • Squarebanks
    replied
    Re: 2011 Alaska Nanook Offseason: Wake Me Up When September Ends

    Originally posted by mmf View Post
    We are in a worse spot then before. We do not have any bargaining power. The WCHA does not "need" us. This realignment is probably going to increase our operating costs, or take them all the way down to zero. Conferences are wary of travel costs and will act accordingly unless mitigated. The Alaska exemption and having a large part of travel costs paid for are mitigating factors. With those factors we should be a logical piece of the puzzle. At best we are in a pay-to-play situation with the WCHA. Creative scheduling and a cost sharing arrangement with UAA could lessen the cost impact.

    I do not think there is a viable CCHA for us. The WCHA will probably end up with at least eight teams. I think we could and should be one of them. But if not, we are doomed. NMU is gone. ND is certainly gone, along with one or two more CCHA teams.

    If we are left on the outside looking in, I can not see us subsidizing travel for a newly formed CCHA. Based on the teams that could possibly become part of the CCHA, I'm not sure they could afford the travel or even want us in the conference if we do not continue to subsidize travel.

    I just hope the decision is made this August, I need to decide if I can settle for becoming a Fairbanks Ice Dog fan and season ticket holder.
    Well...now I'm depressed.

    Leave a comment:

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