2011 NCAA Men's Ice Hockey Tournament Bracketology: Projecting The Field

General view of Ford Field while the Wisconsin Badgers play the Boston College Eagles in the championship game of the 2010 NCAA Frozen Four on April 10, 2010 at Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

Unlike the subjectivity of the NCAA men's basketball tournament's Selection Committee, year in and year out we pretty much know what to expect from the NCAA men's ice hockey tournament selection process. As a result, you can be your very own college hockey bracketologist using USCHO's PairWise Predictor.

Predict the Tournament winners of Atlantic Hockey, the CCHA, ECAC, Hockey East and the WCHA and find out where BC ends up in a projection of the final PWR ratings.

Here are my picks (nothing too crazy, mostly chalk):

Atlantic Hockey
Semifinal #2: Air Force defeats Holy Cross
Semifinal #1: RIT defeats Connecticut
Championship game: RIT defeats Air Force

Semifinal #2: Miami defeats Notre Dame
Semifinal #1: Michigan defeats Western Michigan
Championship game: Michigan defeats Miami
Consolation game: Notre Dame defeats Western Michigan

Semifinal #2: Dartmouth defeats Cornell
Semifinal #1: Yale defeats Colgate
Championship game: Yale defeats Dartmouth
Consolation game: Cornell defeats Colgate

Hockey East
Semifinal #2: Merrimack defeats New Hampshire
Semifinal #1: Boston College defeats Northeastern
Championship game: Boston College defeats Merrimack

Play-in #2: Minnesota-Duluth defeats Bemidji State
Play-in #1: Colorado College defeats Alaska-Anchorage
Semifinal #2: Denver defeats Minnesota-Duluth
Semifinal #1: North Dakota defeats Colorado College
Championship game: North Dakota defeats Denver 

Given the above, Yale, North Dakota, Boston College and Michigan would finish as the NCAA Tournament's top four seeds. Miami, Merrimack, Denver and Union would be the 2 seeds. Minnesota-Duluth, Notre Dame, New Hampshire and Colorado College the 3s, and Nebraska-Omaha, Dartmouth, Rensselaer and RIT the 4s. (First team out ... Boston University. Heh.)

Here's how I would see the NCAA Tournament going down given these seeds:

East Regional (Bridgeport, Ct.)
No. 16 RIT vs. No. 1 Yale
No. 9 Minnesota-Duluth vs. No. 8 Union

West Regional (St. Louis)
No. 13 Nebraska-Omaha vs. No. 4 Michigan
No. 12 Colorado College vs. No. 6 Merrimack

Midwest Regional (Green Bay)
No. 15 Rensselaer vs. No. 2 North Dakota
No. 10 Notre Dame vs. No. 7 Denver

Northeast Regional (Manchester, N.H.)
No. 14 Dartmouth vs. No. 3 Boston College
No. 11 New Hampshire vs. No. 5 Miami


I kinda hate the fact that BC would have to play Dartmouth and possibly UNH in Manchester, but that's the price York and the Eagles would have to pay to stay local this year. BC, Yale and North Dakota are already locks for three of the four 1 seeds. Yale is the host of this year's Bridgeport regional, so that Region is out. That means BC is all but a lock to play in Manchester, unless UNH drops to a 4 seed and BC is forced to head west. 

The Eagles have owned Miami in the NCAA Tournament in recent years, and I'm sure the RedHawks would be none too pleased about seeing BC in their NCAA regional for what seems like the 15th consecutive season.

Projected Frozen Four field (gets a little crazy): Boston College, Denver, Michigan and Minnesota-Duluth.  

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