One of my favorite new blogs (well, it’s been going since WJC time, so relatively new) is the United States of Hockey, run by Chris Peters. We had a mini conversation on twitter earlier this week when I remarked that Denver’s Freshman class was 2nd best in the country, to only Notre Dame. I think Denver has probably more talented kids, but in terms of impact the Freshmen have had the first year, I think Notre Dame’s is the best. To illustrate, a table:
Yes Notre Dame has more Freshmen, and thus a higher percentage of their team’s points, but beyond that, Anders Lee and TJ Tynan are tied for the national Freshman lead in goals with 18, and Tynan and Lee are 1-2 in points with 39 and 33 respectively.
This table, of course, ignores the goalies. Sam Brittain is third in the WCHA in GAA and tied for second in save percentage. Beyond that, I think he’s probably the most talented goalie in the conference. Notre Dame has a pair of Freshmen goalies in Steve Summerhays and Joe Rogers, but they have played just a combined 8 games, and each have save percentages under .900.
With a former second round pick (Jason Zucker), and Nick Shore, who received an A rating from Central Scouting (not to mention Sam Brittain), I think Denver’s Freshmen have the better futures, but to me there’s no question that for first year impact, the Irish’s rookies have done the most.