Sunday, March 18, 2012

Wolverines #1 Seed in Midwest Regional, Will Face Cornell

Ladies and gentlemen, it's time to brace yourselves once again for the heart-attack-in-hockey-form that is the NCAA postseason. The brackets are out, and the Wolverines will be the #1 seed in the Midwest Regional, which takes place on Friday and Saturday in Green Bay, WI.

Michigan's first opponent will be the Cornell Big Red out of the ECAC. I'll have more on them later in the week, but they rank 12th in the PWR and have an 18-8-7 record on the season. They go to overtime a lot. 10 of their last 19 games have gone to at least one extra session. They lost 6-1 to Harvard in the ECAC Semifinals, but beat Colgate 3-0 to take third place. Earlier this year they had 5 shutouts in a 6-game span, but averaged less than 2 goals per game of their own during that stretch (and 8 of those were in 2 games). They're 23rd in offense and 12th in defense.

The winner of that matchup will take on the winner of Ferris State and Denver.

Here is the full bracket:
1) Michigan vs. 4) Cornell
2) Ferris State vs. 3) Denver

1) Union vs. 4) Michigan State
2) Miami vs. 3) UMass-Lowell

1) North Dakota vs. 4) Western Michigan
2) Minnesota vs. 3) Boston University

1) Boston College vs. 4) Air Force
2) Minnesota-Duluth vs. 3) Maine

The winner of the Midwest bracket will take on the winner of the East regional in the Frozen Four, which, for Michigan, would mean no BC or North Dakota until the Championship Game. Things actually set up really nicely.

The only complaint is that Michigan is the only #1 seed playing the late game in their regional. We saw this weekend what can happen when you're playing the late game and it goes multiple overtimes. I'd love to know what the logic is there, and it better be more than the miniscule TV ratings they'll get on ESPNU. For selfish reasons it's a good thing, since I won't have to take a day off work to get up there in time for our game. It's probably not the end of the world if the game is settled in regulation. If it goes multiple OTs, it could definitely play a factor the next day.

Michigan's trade off for not getting shipped to St. Paul is a tougher (seed-wise) first round game (13th seed instead of the 15th seed) and a potentially tougher second round game (6th seed instead of the 7th that you'd expect with the seeds). In practice, it's Cornell instead of Michigan State and Ferris instead of Minnesota-Duluth. With all due respect to the teams in our region, I'm happy with the way things shook out.

Michigan's game is at 9:00 pm EDT on Friday night. It will air on ESPNU and I'd assume we'll get more information about possible syndication later in the week.

Here's a blurb from MGoBlue about ticket information:
The Michigan Athletics Ticket Office will have Midwest Regional tickets on sale for hockey season-ticket holders only beginning at 9 a.m. on Monday (March 19) until 9 a.m. Tuesday (March 20). All-session tickets are $68. Hockey public season-ticket holders may order up to two tickets and hockey student season-ticket holders may order one ticket. Purchases can be made in person at the U-M ticket office or by phone by calling (734) 764-0247 or toll-free (866) 296-MTIX (6849). Tickets will only be available for pick up at the Resch Center.
General public looking to purchase tickets are directed to visit NCAA Regional Tickets (Green Bay) for more information.
For those of you headed up to Green Bay, here are a few tidbits:

-The Packers Hall of Fame and seeing Lambeau Field are probably the two best things to do. Lambeau is as historical of a venue as there is in this country and I think even non-Packers fans would enjoy seeing it.

-There are a bunch of bars down the street from Lambeau, but my favorite without a doubt is The Stadium View. It's really close to Lambeau (obvious?) and it's even closer to the Resch Center. Great place. And given Cornell's mascot, it might not be a bad idea to learn the "The Bears Still Suck" polka. You'll make friends with the locals and it applies!

-As far as food goes, I haven't been up there in a few years. I remember liking the food at Brett Favre's restaurant. I'm actually kind of surprised that it's still there. The Prime Quarter is a solid grill-your-own-steak place. Chili John's and Kroll's are two of the famous local places, but I've never been to either one.


Wolverine In Exile said...

I'm sorry, "grill-your-own-steak place"? Are you serious? Is this like the steakhouse in that Simpson's episode where Burns kept picking a different cow to be killed?

Anonymous said...

Andy Iles is better than Hunwick.

I can't wait until you can't blame the CCHA refs after Cornell upsets you.

Partha said...

Is any real crowd anticipated up there? Seems like no fan base can easily get to green bay.

Partha said...

oh, and speaking of late running games...the last time the regionals were in Green Bay, Wisconsin beat Cornell 1-0 in Triple OT en route to the '06 title.