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NCAA Hockey Administrators to western fans: Drop Dead

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  • Re: NCAA Hockey Administrators to western fans: Drop Dead

    Originally posted by bravohankins View Post
    On campus NCAA's are a lot of fun. I remember fantastic NCAA games at Bowling Green over the years against Colorado College and Vermont, well fantastic for BG anyway. I can also remember very good BG teams going to Maine and BC and getting run out of the barn.

    .......and that's why campus sites will never happen again. It's just too big of an advantage for the home teams. The coaches will never go for on campus again because lower seeded teams have almost no shot of advancing, very few ever did. Look how many times Michigan used home ice to get to the Frozen Four.

    In the current setup the lower seeded teams have a fighters chance to advance....play well, get a hot goalie and you can beat the #1 seed in a one off scenario. Way tougher on their home ice.
    I'd agree that there's a problem when home ice advantage is sold to the highest bidder. But if home ice is earned by winning a conference tournament, where's the inequity? Don't like playing on the road? Win your conference tournament!

    Another feature of my plan is that it guarantees teams from the "small school conferences" the opportunity to host. That, in turn, might create some very competitive games. 3rd Place NCHC Team hosted by the WCHA Champ? I don't believe that's an automatic win for the host. But I do think it sounds like a great game.

    Next, I'd assert that there's a lot more parity in college hockey these days. The gap between #1 & #16 has closed considerably. Now the last team to get into the tournament has a real chance to win the whole thing. Preposterous you say? Last year UMD did just that.

    You may very well be correct that "campus sites will never happen again." But it won't be because visiting teams "can't" win.
    Last edited by pgb-ohio; 03-14-2019, 09:46 PM.

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    • Re: NCAA Hockey Administrators to western fans: Drop Dead

      Originally posted by Numbers View Post
      And, then we will get some sort of arrangement like the one proposed by pgb-ohio. Conference champs plus the top 2 at large bids host round one.
      For the record, Numbers is referring to a plan I posted 2 years ago. And unless I skimmed past it, that plan was posted on another thread. So if anyone's a little confused, that's more than understandable.

      We've been debating this issue on USCHO for years. Somehow we managed to take a partial break in 2018.

      Regardless, Numbers has done a good job of re-creating my plan, and plugging this year's teams into my general idea. If you weren't part of the 2017 conversation, just focus on that.

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      • Re: NCAA Hockey Administrators to western fans: Drop Dead

        Originally posted by pgb-ohio View Post
        For the record, Numbers is referring to a plan I posted 2 years ago. And unless I skimmed past it, that plan was posted on another thread. So if anyone's a little confused, that's more than understandable.

        We've been debating this issue on USCHO for years. Somehow we managed to take a partial break in 2018.

        Regardless, Numbers has done a good job of re-creating my plan, and plugging this year's teams into my general idea. If you weren't part of the 2017 conversation, just focus on that.
        I should also admit that I had forgotten that last year was not an abject failure. Sioux Falls was ok without the Hawks, and Allentown did surprisingly well. It may be (might be, we don't know for sure yet) that the Hawks hosting in SF and/or Fargo will be a positive thing. And, Allentown being closer to the eastern schools makes it much more viable, even though it's hardly 'midwestern.' So, in truth, there might not be as much of a problem as I would have guessed.

        Nevertheless, time will tell. This year, like many, is certainly an unusual situation: likely 3 top seeds from the west, but only one true western regional. Some would say that's not really sporting.

        In general, however, I think like this:
        The women's tourney uses home sites. So, it can't be that difficult to manage the logistics for the NCAA.

        Cost for NCAA: Here's the potential problem. Instead of renting 4 buildings for 2 days of games + however long they need for setup, they rent 2 buildings for 1 day of games + setup. Surely this is cheaper, although I am sure they pass the costs on to the host right now, and that's the reason that few western facilities bid to host. But......flights. My bracket as done above has 7 flights in round 1 and 4 in round 2. That's 11 flights. Rare is the year now with that many flights in the bracket. Since all hotel stays are at least one day shorter, there is some savings, but probably not enough to offset that. Perhaps the bracket rules could be adjusted to accommodate that. I'll try working something else up in a minute.

        Attendance: What I normally notice reading box scores is that both Round of 16 games have identical attendance. Does that mean they are separate tickets and you have to purchase both? I'm not sure. But I am sure of this....For an NCAA tournament game, almost any school will nearly sell out their barn. Probably at higher prices than are being paid now. So, revenue wise, I would be sure that a Round16 at home, and 2 regional double header system would be equal in revenue and profits to the present system.

        But I don't really see it happening.
        Last edited by Numbers; 03-14-2019, 10:46 PM.

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        • Re: NCAA Hockey Administrators to western fans: Drop Dead

          I wonder if the tone on this thread would change if Arizona State would be a top seed (and that would be possible this year) and get a home game for the first round.

          How many seats (of the 500 or so in their current building) would be allocated to the visiting team.

          That is a potential problem with home teams hosting. Many facilities (11 currently being used) seat less than 2500 people.

          Secondly, how many of these venues are capable of providing proper facilities for National television broadcasting. And would that change the television coverage of this tournament (currently not great). Would ESPN send crews in to 8 different facilities. I don't think so.

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          • Re: NCAA Hockey Administrators to western fans: Drop Dead

            Visitors would get an allotment, and any unsold would be sent back a couple days before to be sold.

            Not treading new waters here
            a legend and an out of work bum look a lot alike, daddy.

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            • Originally posted by pgb-ohio View Post
              Sure he is. And so was I.

              Replies:

              1. 4000 fans in an NHL sized venue is poor crowd. 4000 in a 10,000 seat building is mediocre. 4000 fans in a 4000 seat venue can be a great crowd.

              2. OK, 8 first round games at campus sites might cause some loss of revenue. Maybe. But if so, it's at the margins. The Frozen Four is the breadwinner, whatever the regional format. I also have to believe that having the first round on campus would reduce costs in terms of travel, hotels & facility overhead.

              3. Lack of seating capacity on campus? You seem to ignore the obvious fact you'd be working with 8 buildings rather than 4. I'll buy that the AHL buildings currently in use are twice as big as many campus arenas. But if you added up the chairs in 8 smaller buildings, I'll bet the total would be quite similar to the sum of the chairs in 4 AHL buildings. And even if the AHL total is slightly higher, how is that an advantage? The current reality is that the surplus chairs will just sit empty, even at the so-called "successful" regionals.

              4. Lodging & Logistics are an argument against? Seriously? It's much easier to host one traveling team than the four required by the current set-up. And if Mr. MacInnes shows up to chat, he'll acknowledge that my format avoids a lot of locker room logistical problems caused by multi-team tournaments.

              5. Lead time is a legitimate issue. But if the biggest concern is less branding/commercialism in the first round, I find myself almost wishing for that result.


              One more point; this one isn't a direct reply. But I feel compelled to remind you that the Midwestern & Western Regionals have been mostly failures at the gate for many years. Recently they've been a little better due to:

              1. The Success of the Dakota Regionals; and
              2 Pretending that Eastern Pennsylvania is part of the Midwest.

              While I applaud the results achieved at those sites, I certainly don't think we've found a permanent solution with these locations.
              1. Sure. And it sucks that what I’m about to remind you of is true, but it’s an immutable fact: the NCAA wouldn’t last long, and neither would any theoretical replacement or other sports league, if they willingly gave up money for something that was cool. This will never be a reason that any sports league ever does anything.

              2 & 4. You think travel to Mankato or Potsdam or (god forbid) Houghton is going to be a snap on a weeks notice? What about NCAA and ESPN’s logistics? There are a good 20 pages of requirements for hosting a regional, and having a year to prepare and plan is per of what makes them operate as efficiently as they do.

              Not sure how well balancing logistics on a week’s time is going to go. Or are we going to tell every team in the nation to hold rooms and all the other logistics for a year, after they already have to do that (and have possible issues with blank venue dates or other conflicts), when they already have to do that for conference tourneys.

              Also: the FF making more money isn’t a reason to let the first rounds potentially make less money. Unless we’re counting on only top level big ticket programs winning conferences every year (let’s look at this season as evidence that that is a bad call).

              3. Those 4 venues host two games each in the first round. And your ticket prices reflect it. 4x2 is 8.
              Last edited by ExileOnDaytonStreet; 03-15-2019, 01:35 AM.
              If you want to be a BADGER, just come along with me

              BRING BACK PAT RICHTER!!!


              At his graduation ceremony from the U of Minnesota, my cousin got a keychain. When asked what UW gave her for graduation, my sister said, "A degree from a University that matters."

              Canned music is a pathetic waste of your time.

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              • Re: NCAA Hockey Administrators to western fans: Drop Dead

                Originally posted by mookie1995 View Post
                Visitors would get an allotment, and any unsold would be sent back a couple days before to be sold.

                Not treading new waters here
                I get how that works. That was not my point.

                For example, if we were playing in Arizona, I would guess at minimum, we would have 100 fans going. Clearly at any venue, every team gets at least 100 tickets.
                Would Arizona State want 20% of fans from Minnesota State in the building, and they have to turn hundreds of their fans away. I don't think so.

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                • Re: NCAA Hockey Administrators to western fans: Drop Dead

                  Originally posted by pgb-ohio View Post

                  4. Lodging & Logistics are an argument against? Seriously? It's much easier to host one traveling team than the four required by the current set-up. And if Mr. MacInnes shows up to chat, he'll acknowledge that my format avoids a lot of locker room logistical problems caused by multi-team tournaments.
                  I see my reputation in this area precedes me.

                  There's an easy way to guard against unsuitable buildings to receive the bids, the same way that the NCAA is now dealing with home sites in the women's D-1 basketball tournament. Each venue still has to apply and be vetted as a potential host well prior to the tournament, and if they meet the requirements they are in the pool of potential host sites. If your team is in position to host and you're pre-approved, congratulations you're a host school. If your rink did not make the grade, sorry but them's the breaks. As long as you have enough sites qualify and you don't have to adjust matchups to avoid a lack of suitable buildings, you're golden.

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                  • Re: NCAA Hockey Administrators to western fans: Drop Dead

                    EODS, I feel the need the preface my reply with the following: I've long believed you're an excellent poster, who's made countless positive contributions to this board. That will continue to be my opinion, regardless of how the current conversation goes. That said, here are my replies.
                    Originally posted by ExileOnDaytonStreet View Post
                    1. Sure. And it sucks that what I’m about to remind you of is true, but it’s an immutable fact: the NCAA wouldn’t last long, and neither would any theoretical replacement or other sports league, if they willingly gave up money for something that was cool. This will never be a reason that any sports league ever does anything.
                    As a general principle, yes. But I believe this is an argument against the status quo. My understanding has long been that the neutral sites are a financial albatross, propped up by Frozen Four $$. Why is it tolerated? Because Neutral Sites are "something so cool" they're worth subsidizing. I'm actually shocked that someone would support the current set-up on the grounds it's a vital source of revenue.

                    My belief is that you'd sell lots more tickets at the campus sites. Even at lower price points -- which was a good point by you -- I still think ticket revenue would be at least be a wash. And when people actually attend the games, parking places are purchased; food & drinks are consumed; souvenirs are sold.

                    Now I can't predict the future, so I can't prove that the campus sites would be a financial success. Nor can you prove the contrary. It does startle me that our beliefs/expectations are so different.

                    Maybe you're focusing on the last year or two and believe the current format has turned the corner. But unless you're good with having three regionals on the East Coast as a permanent feature of the tournament, I just don't see it.

                    Finally, if the current format is so financially solid, why won't anyone from the "CCHA States" bid for the regionals? And with the exception of the school with the best traveling fan base in college hockey, no one from the Old WCHA area is bidding either.

                    2 & 4. You think travel to Mankato or Potsdam or (god forbid) Houghton is going to be a snap on a weeks notice? What about NCAA and ESPN’s logistics? There are a good 20 pages of requirements for hosting a regional, and having a year to prepare and plan is per of what makes them operate as efficiently as they do.
                    It wouldn't be a snap, but it would get done. There'd no travel at all for the 8 home teams. For the 8 road teams, most of the traveling parties would be relatively small. The team itself, and a group consisting of family, best friends and the most hardcore fans.

                    As for the 20 pages of requirements, I've already conceded that changes would be necessary, and tried to gently suggest we'd all be better off without some of those rules.

                    Not sure how well balancing logistics on a week’s time is going to go. Or are we going to tell every team in the nation to hold rooms and all the other logistics for a year, after they already have to do that (and have possible issues with blank venue dates or other conflicts), when they already have to do that for conference tourneys...
                    Most of the communities in question will have enough hotel space to accommodate 1 hockey team and a few hundred fans. Even on short notice. For truly unusual situations, you could set up the travel schedule so the fan lodging is somewhere between the two cities. Remember, we're talking about a single elimination tournament. One game. Win or lose, head home. Again, it's not a snap. But it wouldn't be nearly as difficult as you make it sound. It's not like March is high tourist season in the Northern states.

                    3. Those 4 venues host two games each in the first round. And your ticket prices reflect it. 4x2 is 8.
                    Fair point. But there's a serious downside. Most fans dislike having to pay the higher prices. Partly because of budget constraints; and partly because most fans don't stay for both games. Personally I'm usually up for a double-header, and I'll bet you are too. But we're in the minority. And if anything, our numbers are shrinking.

                    That being the case, why not sell the games one at a time, at half the price? In locations where fans will actually attend?

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                    • Re: NCAA Hockey Administrators to western fans: Drop Dead

                      Originally posted by ExileOnDaytonStreet View Post
                      1. Sure. And it sucks that what I’m about to remind you of is true, but it’s an immutable fact: the NCAA wouldn’t last long, and neither would any theoretical replacement or other sports league, if they willingly gave up money for something that was cool. This will never be a reason that any sports league ever does anything.

                      2 & 4. You think travel to Mankato or Potsdam or (god forbid) Houghton is going to be a snap on a weeks notice? What about NCAA and ESPN’s logistics? There are a good 20 pages of requirements for hosting a regional, and having a year to prepare and plan is per of what makes them operate as efficiently as they do.

                      Not sure how well balancing logistics on a week’s time is going to go. Or are we going to tell every team in the nation to hold rooms and all the other logistics for a year, after they already have to do that (and have possible issues with blank venue dates or other conflicts), when they already have to do that for conference tourneys.

                      Also: the FF making more money isn’t a reason to let the first rounds potentially make less money. Unless we’re counting on only top level big ticket programs winning conferences every year (let’s look at this season as evidence that that is a bad call).

                      3. Those 4 venues host two games each in the first round. And your ticket prices reflect it. 4x2 is 8.
                      The logistics are done in D-3 Basketball though very quickly. They announce the Sweet 16/Elite 8 hosts on a Sunday and playing on Friday with team's only knowing they qualify for that round on Saturday evening and having to travel thousand miles in some cases. If it can be done at the lower level of NCAA tournaments, it can be done in college hockey.
                      Yes I am the former member known as Zlax45

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                      • Re: NCAA Hockey Administrators to western fans: Drop Dead

                        Originally posted by John J. MacInnes View Post
                        I see my reputation in this area precedes me.
                        Indeed. We haven't always agreed. But I've learned things from you, and it has influenced my thinking. Much appreciated.

                        There's an easy way to guard against unsuitable buildings to receive the bids, the same way that the NCAA is now dealing with home sites in the women's D-1 basketball tournament. Each venue still has to apply and be vetted as a potential host well prior to the tournament, and if they meet the requirements they are in the pool of potential host sites. If your team is in position to host and you're pre-approved, congratulations you're a host school. If your rink did not make the grade, sorry but them's the breaks. As long as you have enough sites qualify and you don't have to adjust matchups to avoid a lack of suitable buildings, you're golden.
                        Sounds like a good concept. As long as the "certifications" would last for a period of years, I don't think this would be huge hardship. Perhaps you could certify existing buildings by doing one conference per year, then after six years, repeat the cycle. Presumably new buildings would need to get an immediate review...

                        Granted, if someone insists that you have to certify all 60 schools every March, that would kill the plan.

                        While you're here, let me ask you a question. My friend EODS brought up Houghton in a recent post. In your humble opinion, could MTU host a 1st Round NCAA hockey game on short notice? (One visiting team; single game, winner-take-all format; with roughly a week's notice)

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                        • Re: NCAA Hockey Administrators to western fans: Drop Dead

                          What makes anyone think that NCAA games on campus would sell out "for sure" - when no one shows up to any of these on-campus conference playoff games?

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                          • Re: NCAA Hockey Administrators to western fans: Drop Dead

                            Originally posted by ScoobyFanClub View Post
                            What makes anyone think that NCAA games on campus would sell out "for sure" - when no one shows up to any of these on-campus conference playoff games?
                            Many (most) schools are on break during the first half of March. By the end of the month, most are back.

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                            • Re: NCAA Hockey Administrators to western fans: Drop Dead

                              Originally posted by WeAreNDHockey View Post
                              Many (most) schools are on break during the first half of March. By the end of the month, most are back.
                              True, but there's more to it than that.

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                              • Re: NCAA Hockey Administrators to western fans: Drop Dead

                                Originally posted by ScoobyFanClub View Post
                                True, but there's more to it than that.
                                Of course there may be more than that, but that is the factor you noted. It is one of the major factors at schools with good student support that drive sub-par crowds during the first two rounds of conference tournaments. And that factor would be largely absent by the time the NCAA rolls around. NCAA tournament games are (or should be) bigger deals than conference tournament games and I have zero doubt that hosting at least the first round on campus sites would lead to (generally) full buildings, barring horrible pricing decisions forced on the schools by the NCAA. If big crowds are your priority the only thing that would assure them is higher seeds hosting.

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