Future Big Ten, WCHA and CCHA

Submitted by Brewcityitalian on February 3rd, 2011 at 12:37 AM

I was thinking about this future big ten hockey along with what would be best for hockey in college hockey overall, so here are my thoughts, it will help these schools save money, especially on travel ( see air force and alaska schools) and gets Huntsville in a conference and gets huntsville and omaha a little southern rivalry, and keeps the minnesota schools and colorodo schools  and alaska schools along with North dakota all in one conference, and the Michigan and Ohio schools together along with Omaha and Huntsville and Notre Dame

Big Ten Hockey




Penn state

Little Brother

Crappy school 187 miles south of Ann Arbor


CCHA 10 teams

Western Michigan

Miami Oh

Notre Dame

Nebraska omaha

Alabama huntsville

Northern Michigan

Ferris State

Michigan tech

Bowling Green

Lake Superior


WCHA 10 teams


Alaska Anchorage

North Dakota

Colorodo College


Air Force

Bemidji State

St Cloud State

Minnesota - Duluth

Minnesota State                                                                                                                             



February 3rd, 2011 at 2:56 AM ^

Not going to happen. Illinois/ IU/ NU/ Purdue/ Iowa/ probably Nebraska (though I have no real information on Nebraska, this is conjecture) won't join. 

Illinois for Title IX, IU/Purdue/ Northwestern won't get the following to make it worthwhile and Nebraska would (again probably) have to build a dedicated arena on campus.

So basically unless Illinois gets another women's sport added, and Nebraska, Purdue and IU find financially viable ways to bring hockey to Division I, it isn't going to happen. NU would be in the best position, but they probably have their own Title IX issues to deal with, as well as there not being a realistic B1G rink in Evanston.


February 3rd, 2011 at 12:56 PM ^

IU actually has had informal discussions between their regents and their AD about finding a donor to bring the start up costs of a varsity program. IU is the next program after PSU to add a program. I agree with you regards Illinois/NU/Purdue. Purdue's team has to travel 30 minutes just to practice and they play their games one hour away in Indy. Illinois-Chicago is closer to bringing up a program than Illinois-UC or Northwestern; even then it would be at the D3 level. Iowa has the same problem as Nebraska, lack of rinks and established hockey culture in the state. 


February 3rd, 2011 at 6:34 PM ^

I didn't know that about IU, that's cool though.

It's a shame Northwestern won't ever go division one. I played hockey in the area for a long time and it would be really sweet to see a 5,000-10,000 seat arena in Evanston. Plus they have a ridiculous amount of money and could afford it better than any of the other schools without a team.


February 3rd, 2011 at 9:48 AM ^

Nope, you are not alone. I want to keep the CCHA for the good of college hockey. Programs like Bowling Green, Ferris, Northern, Lake State, and Western depend on Michigan, MSU, ND, Miami, and OSU for their box office sales. There is no way the smaller programs, except for Miami, could survive without the bigger programs in the CCHA. The WCHA smaller universities' programs can survive without Minny and Wisconsin. There is already enough of a draw with NoDak, Denver, CC, Minnesota Duluth. There is still the issue with the two Alaska schools. Putting both of these programs in the same conference will double the travel costs. I have no clue how to fix the issue with those two programs. 


February 3rd, 2011 at 12:46 AM ^

I think the costs go down dramatically with both alaska schools and air force in the wcha and both southern schools in the ccha

unless their is some other school in the ccha area that is going to make the jump to d1 eventually to replace huntsville


February 3rd, 2011 at 12:46 AM ^

I think the costs go down dramatically with both alaska schools and air force in the wcha and both southern schools in the ccha

unless their is some other school in the ccha area that is going to make the jump to d1 eventually to replace huntsville


February 3rd, 2011 at 12:46 AM ^

I think the costs go down dramatically with both alaska schools and air force in the wcha and both southern schools in the ccha

unless their is some other school in the ccha area that is going to make the jump to d1 eventually to replace huntsville


February 3rd, 2011 at 12:48 AM ^

I like the ccha, and would prefer it being the way it is, but once penn state joins i got a feeling  the big ten is gonna form the big ten conference

I think every other team in the big 10 has a club team also , even nebraska has one except iowa I think


February 3rd, 2011 at 10:20 AM ^

If saving money is the basis for the conference set ups then why not leave Michigan Tech in the WCHA? It is a lot more cost effective for them to be traveling to Wisconsin and Minnesota than to Southern Michigan and Ohio.
<br>Also, do you think the B1G would go for a 6 team conference? I would be more apt to think they would keep ND, WMU, and possibly FSU to keep an 8-10 team conference.


February 3rd, 2011 at 10:20 AM ^

...it just won't work right now.  The Big Ten schools know that they need to grow the sport  or at least keep it at the level it's at.  If they were to split off and form their own conference in hockey right now, too many of the smaller teams wouldn't survive.  Some of these teams are still fighting to survive.  Hockey is an expensive sport.


February 3rd, 2011 at 10:29 AM ^

I'm not a big fan of an exclusive conference.  Why not expand on the College Showcase whch  is ending, and have a mid-season roundrobin tournament amongst Big Ten teams with a short playoff, like they do in pre-conference college basketball?

I think if you put powers Wis, Minn, Mich, and MSU in the same conference, some of them are going to have to be satisfied with less conf titles and success than their fans are used to.

we the roses

February 3rd, 2011 at 10:32 AM ^

you guys make it seem that Alaska and all these other teams would want to end ties and switch conferences. With many of the teams, there is a lot of history in the CCHA or WCHA and the school would not want to leave just because. Realistically, I don't see this happening unless they take in Miami, ND, BG, Western and Ferris. 

Hardware Sushi

February 3rd, 2011 at 11:02 AM ^

Nice work, although I don't think this is the direction it is heading. As mentioned by one poster above, Alabama-Huntsville was denied admission to the CCHA but I believe that decision was made by the CCHA because there were wheels turning behind the scenes to secure the money for a PSU team that would become the twelfth CCHA member.

IMO, you will see is a hybrid Big Ten/CCHA lineup. Nobody in college hockey wants to hurt the overall growth of college hockey, which a Big Ten Hockey Conference would do by eliminating the games (the Big Ten schools) that drive ticket sales at smaller institutions like LSSU, Ferris, Minn-Mankato, St. Cloud, etc. I think you'll see participation by the Big Ten schools in a CCHA/WCHA and Big Ten hockey conference.

By this, UM/MSU/OSU will play a nearly-identical  CCHA schedule as they do now while maintaining media rights for the matchups involving other Big Ten schools to broadcast on the Big Ten Network. This actually affects Minnesota and Wisconsin's schedules more than ours, as they will need to find four additional games on their schedules to accomodate OSU and PSU and an extra game for UM/MSU (since UM/MSU already play Minn/Wisc once each in the College Hockey Showcase every year), while we only need to find room for two total extra games.

As a matter of fact, this hybrid structure isn't unprecedented. Michigan was a member of the WCHA and Big Ten hockey conferences from 1958-59 until it split with the WCHA to join the CCHA in 1980-81. I don't see why this model wouldn't be able to benefit both Michigan (and the other Big Ten schools) as well as the smaller institutions.

There are some kinks that need to be worked out, like if a Big Ten tournament is desirable (and feasible while still including the CCHA tournament) and whether the number of league games is still appropriate. While the BTN has driven football realignment and a Big Ten hockey league would undoubtedly put people in the seats and in front of the television, this is a much different situation from football and the Big Ten hockey schools aren't blind to the fact that the smaller institutions depend us visiting to pay for what is oftentimes their marquee sports program.

Besides, an all-Big Ten league, at this point, would be boring and repetitive. Do you really want to play 20-24 games against the same 5 teams? Until other Big Ten schools can add a hockey program, there isn't really a reason to break away - and a few posters above have hit on the fact that unless those schools receive a Pugula-type donation (PSU's $100 mil donor), they won't be adding one anytime soon. I think we'll see a hybrid-conference in two years when PSU joins collegiate hockey.


February 3rd, 2011 at 12:20 PM ^

Syracuse is moving to NCAA in the next few years, so you can add them if we get the call to the B1G.

I prefer keeping the CCHA together though, I side with tradition and if it's not broke, don't fix it.