The Other Power Five Member Rejects Big 10 Proposal
Arizona State has officially announced its opposition to the Big 10's proposed age limitation on incoming recruits. While ASU has held their conference affiliation preference close to the vest, the common assumption was that they would join the Big 10 Conference as it was assumed they had a similar culture and values ($$$) as a fellow member of the Power Five conferences.
Assuming the PAC-12 follows ASU's recommendation, their vote will count four times (Power Five conferences have 4 votes each) compared to the one vote all other multi-sport conferences have.
According to College Hockey News, ASU head coach Greg Powers teed off on the Big 10 proposal and was very clear about the Sun Devils' position, “We are not for the legislation, we like it the way it is. For the same reasons the rest of college hockey likes it. Most importantly, I think you’re limiting opportunity to kids if you pass this and we’re a program that has a lot of kids that fell into that boat." Powers went on to say, “Some kids need that extra year to earn the opportunity to play college hockey and I think it’s wrong to take that away from them."
If ASU planned to join the Big 10, it would have been reasonable to assume that Powers would either agree with the Big 10 proposal or soften his opposition to the legislation. This break from the Big 10's school of thought indicates that ASU might be taking a serious look at joining the WCHA or NCHC, which would be better geographic and cultural fits for the fledgling program.
As we have stated in the past, ASU seems to be a much better fit for the NCHC than the Big 10. The statements by Greg Powers prove that the earlier assumptions of Big 10 membership may well have been premature.