Tuesday, January 23, 2007

National Polls Screw Over DU Again
DU stuck At #5 for second week in a row

From: Denver Post
by Mike Chambers
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(left) No Respect
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It's time to relegate college hockey's subjective media polls below the unbiased computer.

Much like football's Bowl Championship Series formula, hockey's PairWise Ranking (PWR) is the primary tool to determine what teams are in position to play for the national championship.

The PWR is not sanctioned by the NCAA, but it mimics how the NCAA Tournament selection committee seeds its 16-team field. The PWR made its season debut last week and is available on U.S. College Hockey Online (uscho.com) and College Hockey News (collegehockeynews.com).

The University of Denver (18-8-2) and Colorado College (14-9-1) are fifth and tied for 10th, respectively, in the "generic" PWR. Users should input .003 in the "bonus" field to get a more accurate list.

The bonus-point amount for quality road wins is the only element the NCAA keeps secret, but a USCHO executive said the .003 is what the NCAA has used in previous years. The final PWR produced by USCHO has predicted every NCAA Tournament field since its mid-1990s inception.

Coming home happy

DU outplayed Minnesota for much of last weekend's two-game split in Minneapolis, but the Gophers remained No. 1 in both media polls. The Pioneers fell from No. 4 to No. 5 in the USA Today/American Hockey Magazine poll and remained fifth in the USCHO.com/CSTV poll. Minnesota is No. 2 behind New Hampshire in the PWR.

The Pioneers have another big Western Collegiate Hockey Association series this weekend against visiting St. Cloud State.

The Huskies (16-4-4) are third in the PWR and second in the rugged WCHA, two points ahead of DU.

"I think it's awesome how we're playing," DU captain Adrian Veideman said after last weekend's 1-0 win and 5-4 loss at Minnesota. "It's all about getting better every day, and (last) weekend was a big step for us. We proved to ourselves that we can play with anybody, especially after dealing with a number of things, including a lot of bad bounces."

The Pioneers ended Minnesota's school-record, 21-game home unbeaten streak Friday before producing 45 shots in Saturday's finale, in which they got within a goal twice after 3-0 and 5-2 deficits. Veideman and goalie Glenn Fisher said the loss felt like a win.

"We faced a lot of adversity and didn't back down," Fisher said.

Footnotes

DU's J.P. Testwuide will serve a one-game suspension Friday for fighting Minnesota's Ben Gordon last Saturday. Gordon will serve the same penalty in Minnesota's series opener against North Dakota.
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USCHO.com/CSTV National D-I Ice Hockey Poll
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1). Minnesota (36) 21-3-3
2). New Hampshire (4) 18-4-1
3). Notre Dame 20-5-1
4). St. Cloud State 16-4-4
5). Denver 18-8-2
6). Maine 15-6-2
8). Miami 18-8-2
9). Michigan State 16-8-1
10). Clarkson 14-6-3
11). Vermont 14-8-2
12). Michigan 17-9-0
13). Boston College 12-8-1
14). Colorado College 14-9-1
15). North Dakota 13-11-2
16). Niagara 15-8-3
17). St. Lawrence 12-9-2
18). Cornell 9-7-3
19). Lake Superior 13-10-3
20). Quinnipiac 11-8-4

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