Three Consultants To Guide NCHC Formation

(above) Bobby Goldberg, Richard Oriolo and Larry Rubin
Three east coast consultants have emerged today as major players behind the scenes of the National Collegiate Hockey Conference. The Goldwater Group and Stafford Sports will initially assess additional members and the best possible media platforms.

All three consulting firms bring professional sports expertise and management skills to the fledgling collegiate hockey conference. They will advise the league in a variety of issues including branding, public relations and media contacts.
Bobby Goldwater - Graduate of conference member Miami University. Spoke at the Press Conference today. He is a sports management consultant. Has extensive experience dealing with sports commissions, professional sports team stadiums and arena management.  Helped bring the Washington Nationals to D.C. from Montreal.

Richard Oriolo - An expert in the development of business and strategic planning for both public sector and private sector clients. Worked for the Philadelphia Flyers and with the Florida Panthers of the NHL, in media and entertainment with the Nickelodeon Cable Network in development and training with Spectacor Management Group (SMG); and in marketing, sales and training with Comcast Spectacor and the Wachovia Spectrum arena in Philadelphia.
Larry Rubin - Was Vice President of Public Relations at the Spectrum Arena in Philadelphia. Handled the public relations efforts of concerts, sports and national events taking place at the 20,000-seat arena. He served as PR Director for the Philadelphia Flyers. As VP, Corporate Communications for Spectacor Management Group, he directed the public relations activities for some 20 arenas, convention centers, stadiums and theaters in the United States and Europe.”


Anonymous said...

This is significant. Dollars are being spent and good sports minds are behind this work. These guys are all thinking about raising the bar for college hockey.

Ring_of_Fire said...

@ Anon 2:16...

No kidding.

If anyone has any questions about the NCHC's commitment to a superior hockey conference in ALL possible facets, a quick look at the bios of these gentlemen should debase those notions immediately.

Aluuum said...

I've got the commissioner for these three guys. it's none other than our own gwoz. His contract is in it's last year and the fact that an extension has not been agreed to at this late date speaks volumes.
Gwoz has excellent relations with the other coaches from the old WCHA and certainly with his prodigy Rico Blassi at Miami. He's a strong believer in this new conference,having been one of the leaders in it's formation from the beginning. He gets to stay in Denver which both he and his wife love. It's a slam dunk.
We can get killer Miller as the new head coach. he has been well trained by Gwoz, and we get to keep his recruiting skills and connections.

dggoddard said...

DU is working on Coach Gwozdecky's contract as we speak.

If you were going to predict that one of the three gentlemen pictured in the article might end up as the conference commissioner you might be on to something.

Anonymous said...

Think Gwoz' contract is up in 2013 or so. Gwoz is a Hall of Fame level hockey coach (if there was one), but to me, a great commissioner needs to have a wider skill set then just coaching.

-Commissioners need to be salesman for their leagues. Gwoz is not really a salesman - he's a little too measured/corporate to connect with people emotionally.

-Commissioners today need to have a serious grasp of developing media opportunities and sponsorships, as well as the administrative and people skills to get things done.

-I'd probably be looking for gifted #2 guys at top college conferences as a starting point rather then straight hockey experience over anything else.

Anonymous said...

Listen to the video interview with UND Brian Faison over at the UND web site. He's got some good insights into the future league media coverage and commissioner search criteria.

Essentially, he sees a national TV package as something that will come out of this league, and he's looking for a commissioner who really understands the business, revenue gneration and media. In other words, having a "hockey guy" is likely less important than someone who can make money and expose the product.

Anonymous said...

If I were commissioner of the NCHC, my first order of business would be to not allow participation banners to be hung in the members' rinks. They are tacky, CC, yes they are...

mexico said...

@ anon 3:52

Once DU gets a legitimate mascot we can talk…

Anonymous said...

Gino Gasparini.....

Anonymous said...

He're's Battle Plan:

1) Establish seed funding from member schools (assume they have that already)

2) Get Notre Dame in at all costs. Pay them if you have to. That brand is bank when negotiating for National TV.

3) Set up a 501c(3) non-profit. Get a league constitution and bylaws that take best ideas from top college conferences.

4) Hire a Commissioner, get offices and staff.

Need visionary salesman/media master in top job, prerably someone with major conference and hockey credibility. Need a NCAA-experienced detail person as a #2 Assitant commissioner, who can oversee and implement contractually whatever the commissioner is able to sell.

Need a top communications person, preferably a hungry #2 from an NHL team, and a supervisor of officials, preferably a recently retired NHL ref - McCreary? Zelkin?

4) Use consultants to Create Brand Strategy - demographics, competitive analysis, driver attributes, positioning platform, messaging, logo, design system and media plan, social media, mobile and web platforms

5) Sponsorships

Need to set up founding sponsors with national brand footprints. Start with these catergories Athletic Equipment, Soft/Performance Drinks, Airline, Hotel Chain, Bank/Invesment Firm, Automobile, etc. Would be good to create a bonus deal with NHL sponsors to extend to prime college hockey audience.

6) TV - Presumably there is interest from Comcast/Versus as a category gateway for NHL coverage. Get the deal done.

dggoddard said...

The consultant(s) are going to be recommending the commissioner and you better believe that the "buzzwords" today at the press conference will be all over the candidate's resume.

"media platforms"
"public relations"
"strategic planning"

Anonymous said...

Not Gino. Gino is a good hockey man, and a good administrator but's he's older now and his best days are behind him.

Give me a charismatic salesman who knows his way around the boardroom can make money and new media/sponsorship - someone who can be successful on Madison Avenue as well as in Omaha, Denver or Grand Forks.

dggoddard said...

Also, whomever they hire is going to have to take a massive, massive pay cut.

Perhaps somebody who is burned out on 80 hour weeks or needs more time with the family.

Hopefully they socked away a lot of cash for the fun of being a college sports administrator.

Must be willing to travel on weekends. Good at golf would be a bonus.

miller said...

and no Anderson or Adams, what a great day!

Anonymous said...

You might not be able to give commmisioner a big base salry, but giving them a good bonus structure based in incentive targets would likely help align need with work ethic.

Let's face it. The Big 10 is Hertz and we're Avis. We have to try harder then they do, since Big 10 Commish Jim Delaney spends 90% of his time worrying about football and basketball.