The Boston College Eagles ranked fourth in the nation in the USCHO.com online poll, which was released on Monday.
The Eagles placed behind #3 Providence College, #2 North Dakota, and #1 Minnesota to start the season. BC placed in front of defending national champion Union and sixth-ranked Colgate. Of those six teams, BC is the only team without a first place vote. Minnesota garnered 36 first place votes with both North Dakota and Providence holding two. Union had nine as defending champion, and Colgate garnered a single first place vote.
Hockey East placed seven teams in the USCHO poll, which measures the top 20 teams in college hockey. Notre Dame placed 12th, with Northeastern 16th and defending Hockey East champion UMass-Lowell 17th. Boston University, after a 20-loss season in 2013-2014, is 20th, one point ahead of technically-unranked Minnesota-Duluth.
The opening poll is an interesting case study; 47 teams received votes and points. With only 59 teams sponsoring Division I college hockey, that means over 75% of the nation's teams received recognition. The USCHO poll is comprised of 50 voters and is evenly distributed across much of the college hockey landscape.
The Eagles also placed fourth in the USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine College Hockey Poll. Ranking only the top 15 teams, BC placed behind the same three teams in the same order and in front of Colgate and St. Cloud University. Defending national champion Union ranked 8th in the USA Today poll with one first place vote. Minnesota garnered 32 votes and North Dakota one in that poll.
There are a few observations to take away from this poll:
- Very little respect is being given to the defending national champion. Union had the most first place votes except for the top-ranked team, yet they fell to fifth in the polls. That means the Dutchmen are well behind the top five in other polls.
- Colgate is the preseason favorite and selection by coaches to win ECAC. Somebody clearly took that to heart with the last two national champions coming out of the conference.
- Harvard had four votes. Yeah, I have no idea either.
- Only two teams unranked in last year's season-ending poll are in the top 20. Miami is 11th nationally and BU is 20th.
- I don't understand the BU selection. The Terriers were an absolute dumpster fire last year. Despite a solid offseason, they didn't play nearly well enough last year to think one man could save this team. Actually, scratch that. I forgot Jack Eichel is Jesus Christ.
- Of the 12 teams that did not receive votes, seven came from Atlantic Hockey. AIC, Army, Bentley, Canisius, Holy Cross, RIT, and Sacred Heart all failed to receive votes. Mercyhurst, Robert Morris, Air Force, and Niagara received something (even if it was just a single tally for the Purple Eagles).
That means Hockey East has the same amount of teams in the top 20 as Atlantic Hockey has not receiving votes. One of the teams not receiving a vote is Connecticut, which is in its first year with Hockey East after playing in Atlantic Hockey.
- I acknowledge myself as a member of the USCHO media that covers Atlantic Hockey.
- I will now go light myself on fire.