Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Experimental Rule Change at Michigan

According to USCHO's article about new rules coming to college hockey for next season, U of M will be experimenting in their exhibition games. From the article:

—Experimental rule. The committee reviewed a request from the University of Michigan to allow the school to use an experimental rule in exhibition games. The proposal would change the attacking zone boundary from the blue line to the center ice red line after the traditional zone is gained legally. So, if the attacking team gains the traditional attacking zone legally under current rules on side, the attacking zone expands to include the space between the blue line and the center ice red line.

The committee approved the proposal and extended the option to any school or conference that would like to try this in exhibitions, not just Michigan.

The Blog That Yost Built thinks that the new rule would be a little bit extreme for use full-time, but I'm very curious to see how the game is with the rule in place. I'm also very much looking forward to seeing how confused everyone in the crowd is for the first exhibition game since I would bet that 99% of the people in attendance don't read USCHO on a regular basis, especially during the offseason. The Blog That Yost Built is also very happy that the NHL finally got their heads out of their butts and will likely be getting rid of 2 line passes and bringing back the tag-up offsides. The college game is fine. I love the rules package that they have, minus Scott Hansen being allowed to fuck up any NCAA tournament game Michigan plays in.
The only question I would have is what effect will this have on the Michigan team. The exhibition games are a good time to get the jitters out of the new guys and to get them adjusted a little bit to the college game before they start playing for real. I don't know how smart it is to radically alter the game when you've only got a limited opportunity to essentially practice against an opposing team. Doesn't it essentially make the exhibition games irrelevant (even moreso than they usually are)?
That said, I'm looking forward to the lack of offsides calls leading to Michigan hanging a couple touchdowns on whatever unfortunate Canadian team they're playing--and insulting by not playing their anthem--this year. I'm also looking forward to Jack Johnson laying one of the unfortunate Canadians out. Has anyone been tossed from one of these exhibition games before? Johnson is already #2 on my list of favorite Wolverines of my time in Ann Arbor, behind Jed Ortmeyer. This kid rules.


Anonymous said...

I doubt that Jack Johnson will be laying some CIS player out in an exhibition game. I think they put up a couple of touchdowns last year against a Canadian team, didn't they? Minus the conversion.

The NTDP and USA Hockey both seemed a bit afraid of letting Johnson loose. He seemed the logical captain for the U18 team, but they picked "nice guy" Jimmy Fraser. Then they left Johnson off the U20 team for "nice guy" Brian Lee. I think

But the U18 players who come to Michigan with Johnson all seem like they play his game...Mitera, MacVoy, Bailey were all among the most physical players on the team, and Dan Fardig likes to bang as well. With such a large "posse" along with hardnosed types like Tim Miller and Travis Turnbull, he could really change the team identity.

Packer487 said...

Honestly, having watched Jack play a bunch of times...it really wouldn't shock me if he layed someone out in the exhibtion game. He's a mean sucker on the ice, and I love that about him. He had about every New Hampshire fan ready to kill him after they played USA last year. Wouldn't shock me a bit if he's the most hated player in college hockey next year....and if he's the favorite player of every Michigan fan.
I totally agree about this class changing the team's identity. On The Wolverine awhile back Spath had an article about how they're trying to move to a more physical style. We're gonna have a big, mean defense corps next year. Johnson, Mitera, Dest, and Hunwick will all hit. Cook and Rohlfs are both huge, even if Cookie won't hit anyone. It's gonna be interesting to watch them play.

Brian said...

Hey, man, welcome to the blogosphere. I've long thought you should join up. I got sick of linking to your disappearing posts.

Packer487 said...

Thanks! I'm looking forward to doing it. Now I just gotta figure out how to make it look cool and stuff like that. I know nothing about HTML. Took me like a half hour yesterday just to figure out how to add links to the sidebar. I rule.

Brian said...

if you have any specific questions, you can drop me an email.