Poster says most college kids are between 18-23. Someone points out that 16% are between 25 and 29...and somehow that is supposed to dispute that most college kids are 18-23.
Also, I have no idea what 7% of players being 25+ proves other than that's 7% more than there should be. If you're somehow saying it proves it's not a big problem, only Mason Jobst stands out as being 25. It's not taking into account 24 year old seniors or players who leave for pro hockey at 23 etc. And obviously doesn't factor in 21 year old freshmen. But hey, numbers! Ya!
This is meaningless because the rules aren't changing and we certainly aren't making any difference arguing about it. What's nauseating is the crocodile tears from blue blood fans pretending they care about players' welfare or some such nonsense.
FWIW, WMU is one of the younger teams in the country these days. It's the program's choice like any other and has its upsides and downsides. That's not a reason to handcuff other programs when 85% of the college hockey programs are against it.
BC in football, basketball, baseball et al competes with the same rules as everyone else in their respective sports, and doesn't win. They're also not a legit "elite" program in either sport, some parts due to their own academic constraints, location, etc. In hockey, they're an "elite" program party due to exactly the opposite reasons. And their history.
And just to clarify, I've made it clear on these boards for years that I'd prefer even Lowell not having 21 year old freshmen (they'll have two at puck drop on the season opener this season). But I understand why programs do what they do, and it's not against the rules.
Isn't this whole thing a solution in search of a problem?
Yeah, a higher percentage of college hockey players are older than their peers playing college basketball or football or wrestling or whatever.
So what? What exactly is the problem? At the end of the day most of what these kids get is a college education paid for at least in party by their ability to play a sport. Does it matter that the college education comes when you are 23 or 24 versus 18 or 19? Personally I think a college education at any age is good.
Are we seeing a rash of injuries to our 18 and 19 year old college players at the hands of players who are 24 or 25? No. There is zero evidence of that. We have kids leaving school at 19 or 20 and going to play in the NHL against 35 year old men.
What it really comes down to is the "problem" that is only half spoken about is that certain coaches and programs don't like the fact that their players may be competing against kids that are two or three years older, on average. But the rules are the same for everyone.
As referenced before, if football or basketball had a league, like juniors, where players maintained their NCAA eligibility, non-blue chip schools would be going after 20-21 year-olds to close the skill gap.
Said this before, but coaches/programs who normally wouldn't bring in 20 and 21 year old freshmen have started to do that/are going to start doing it. So when that picks up and big programs start getting the best young kids and the best of the elderly...what is next for smaller programs? Do they start bringing in even older players? Where does it end?
Second, if someone wants to leave high school and enter college as an 18 year old, there is literally nothing in the current rules that prevent that. The only thing holding the kid back would be grades/test scores and money, the same thing holding every other potential college student back.
But what the proposal does do is potentially deny a kid an opportunity. You could have a kid whose skills are not good enough to attract a scholarship offer at 18, but maybe they do after a year or two of juniors. So now you have a kid who might get some of his college paid for (a pretty big deal these days) who would otherwise be denied under your plan. Since an education is all most of these kids will take out of their college career, isn't that important?
NCAA hockey isn't suffering due to older kids coming in as freshmen. People have been biatching about this since Minnesota took its pucks and went home because they didn't like DU's players.
Its not bad for the 20 or 21 year old. Its bad for the 18 and 19 year old kid that just graduated high school and should be enrolling in college. Instead, his coach/school tell him he has to go play 2 years of juniors. Thats who it hurts. I think it does hurt NCAA hockey that 24 and 25 year old guys are playing - they are just taking the spot of a young player that belongs in college. The current system promotes bringing in 21 year old freshman. Its backwards.
Part of the reason that kids are playing a lot of junior hockey before entering college is due entirely to the way the "major" programs recruit, programs that I believe are behind the proposed changes. They are recruiting the stud players at a very young age, the recruits that if they continue to progress would be the kids coming in after high school. But because recruiting a 14-15 year old is an inexact science at best, they end up recruiting 8-10 of these kids for a class. The ones who progress come in at 18 or 19, the others get parked in juniors until maybe they're 20, if they come in at all.
But people forget, the kids are fine with this. They want to play college hockey and they want some or all of it paid for by the school. The kids who don't want to wait in juniors don't. They decommit and look elsewhere.
But the major programs would like it so that they can take the 8-10 commitments from the young studs, see which 5-6 pan out and bring them in as 18-19 year olds, discard the rest and essentially force the smaller programs to take the leftover 18-19 year olds because they can't take a 20-21 year old who is developing his skills with time.
The ones who leave after a year or two are only the top 5-10% and they only went to college because they didn't have anywhere else to go or chose not to play in the CHL. Leaving early is a completely different discussion. It hurts the program and if the kid gets a few years in the ECHL without finishing his degree, it likely hurts them too.
I believe that the majority of the older freshman are playing for their education and will stay until they are finished. They want to get a college education and play hockey. Isn't that what the scholarships are supposed to be for?