Terrier hockey for 2007-2008 begins tonight with a matchup against CHA team Robert Morris in the Nye Frontier Classic. So let's take a look at how Coach Jack Parker sizes up the team in his season preview article. A curious comment in the preview was:
“We know we have talent, but the question is whether we will get the effort and focus to be able to perform every night. I’m confident that we will find 20 guys that can do that, but it may not be the expected 20 guys.”
So, is there a potential surprise player, like Matt Gilroy in his freshman year? Perhaps one of the less hyped freshmen, Joe Pereira, or a veteran who has yet to impact the program, Steve Smolinsky. Let's see who suits up for the two games in Alaska.
CSTV's "Rink Rat" Elliott Olshansky explores the Terriers plan to generate more offensive firepower, recalling that in 2005-2006 BU was sixth in the nation in offense. Coach Parker told him: "
I think our problem will be solved this year. I think we'll have aAnother 2005-06 problem, lack of consistency in games at Agganis Arena, was discussed in a Terrier preview article in today's Boston Globe:
much better power play, which was a big part of it. Also, Yip will
be available for us the entire season, he's really good on the power play and as a five-on-five guy, and we'll have [Bryan] Ewing completely healthy. Having those guys available for the entire season, it's almost like we've got two new forwards. We'll be better all-around from the blueline and the forward perspective as far as offense is concerned."
Last year was frustrating because of the real polarization of how we were at home [9-5-5] vs. how we were on the road [9-2-4]," said Parker. " The guys never were focused at home. Some of them thought they were going to show off in front of the hometown fans, they were trying to get goals in front of their parents, I don't know. It never seemed as if we were anywhere near as good at home as we were on the road. If you asked me to name our top 10 games last year, every one of them would've been on the road. That was a chemistry problem and that was an attitude problem that never seemed to get resolved, but I think that's very much resolved this year."
If improving the offense and powerplay is the #1 priority for this year's Terrier, then making Agganis Arena once again an uncomfortable place for opponents to visit is #1A.
The Daily Free Press sizes up tonight's game and let's Coach Parker explain so of the team- and chemistry-building efforts that are part of the trip to Alaska.
For tonight's opener, we'll post SID Brian Kelley's gamenotes later today and hopefully Dave Hendrickson's first weekly Hockey East column and season preview on USCHO. For a look at tonight's opponent, the Robert Morris University, check the CHN preview of the Colonials and USCHO's RMU preview. We'll post a lengthy preview of UA-Anchorage tomorrow.
With no telecast or Web cast available tonight, radio is the way to follow the action. This season all BU hockey (and basketball) games will be on WWZN, a 50,000 watt station. There's a listen live link on the station's Web site. You can also access it from the BU GoTerriers men's hockey page under "Quick Links. Longtime play-by-play announcer Bernie Corbett and analyst Tom Ryan are again the broadcast team.
More Kudos for Matt Gilroy. He was named to INCH's pre-season first team All-American team. INCH also began its weekly power ratings of all 59 D1 team. The Terriers, currently 8th the USA Today Poll and 9th in USCHO/CSTV's, were pegged at 9th by INCH.2009 recruit Ethan Werek's three-game weekend got off to an early start as the Stouffville Spirit hammered Seguin, 7-0. Werek contributed a powerplay goal and an assist.