Friday, October 09, 2009

THFB Q&A--Chris Connolly; Links, previews, polls & more

Duluth native Chris Connolly scored the first goal in last year’s pre-season exhibition game and then added 30 points to become the top scoring freshman. Besides holding down the left-wing spot on BU’s all-rookie line, he filled in on the Terriers’ top line when Colin Wilson was at the World Junior Championships and when Chris Higgins was injured. Coach Jack Parker expects Chris to be on one of BU’s top two lines this season. He recently answered questions from THFB contributors:

Q—Chris, you’re not the first Terrier from Minnesota. John Curry, Ryan Priem and Justin Maiser are a few of those who preceded you here. So what brought you to BU?
A—I grew up in Duluth, Minnesota and had only experienced the Midwest (Omaha and Fargo), so I wanted something completely different for my college experience. I came on my visit out to Boston already knowing how accomplished both the coaching staff and program itself were, but I also fell in love with the city.

Q—Your younger brother Jack was also a freshman last year at Minnesota-Duluth in your hometown. Did you have any interest in joining him with the Bulldogs?
A—Yes I did. It was a very difficult decision for me to turn down my home town University, especially having the chance to be a freshmen with my younger brother; but at the same time, I had also been on my own for a few years playing juniors so leaving home wasn’t an issue for me. The opportunity to play for such an historic program was too good to pass by.

Links, previews, rankings and more has links to an audio interview with Jack Parker, for listening to Saturday’s exhibition game vs. the NTDP U18s on WTBU and for watching on All-Access.

BU Today reports on the banner raising ceremonies that will precede the exhibition and offers a highlight video of the Terrier’s title run.

USA Hockey previews the NTDP U18s weekend in Boston meeting BU and BC.

The Boston Globe’s Nancy Marrapese-Burrell met with Jack Parker to discuss the Terrier squad that will defend its Hockey East and NCAA titles

USCHO’s Dave Hendrickson and Jim Connelly preview Hockey East and take a look at the 2009-10 Terriers.’s David Albright picks the Terriers to retain the Hockey East crown.’s conference preview focuses on NHL-drafted players

USCHO’s initial national poll has Denver on top with the Terriers a close second. Upcoming opponents Michigan, Notre Dame and Cornell are 3rd, 5th and 7th respectively.

Looking back
The Hockey News talks with Nashville rookie Colin Wilson, skating again after an injury, and his coach, Barry Trotz.

Looking ahead
In a USA Junior Hockey Magazine cover story about the rise of the South Shore Kings, Coach Scott Harlow voices high expectations for 2010 recruit Charlie Coyle. Terrier freshman blueliner Ben Rosen led the Kings in scoring last year and sophomore Kevin Gilroy was their top goal-scorer the previous year. Last year's BU co-captain Matt Gilroy also is a Kings alum.

As for Coyle, Harlow coached him for five years with the South Shore Dynamos youth team. Coyle committed to the Terriers last year while playing for Thayer Academy.

“He’s in a class by himself,” said Harlow. As of Oct. 1, he was leading the EJHL with five goals and 15 points in just five games. “He’s going to be the leader of our team and he’s a possible first round NHL draft choice next summer. The kids look up to him – he’s a quiet kid and he leads by example. As a 1992-born player, he’s still young.”

The East Weymouth, Mass., resident simply wanted to prepare for Terrier hockey by playing against the best competition available for his age group in the Eastern U.S.

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