Thought I would steal an update from Andrew over at Colonials Corner:
"Don't forget, RMU Radio will be broadcasting the US National Team versus the Robert Morris Colonials softball game live from Consol Energy Park in Washington, PA on Thursday at 7pm. You can listen to the broadcast featuring myself and Dan Yost on rmuradio.com"
So, 7pm on Thursday: RMUradio.com Check it out!
I felt it was appropriate to pass along the unfortunate news of former RMU Student Athlete Josh O'Bannon's passing this morning. This article was written on Colonial's Corner by Andrew Chiappazzi. Andrew followed the RMU Football team for the past few seasons and knew most of the players well, I felt that I could share what Andrew wrote:
"The Robert Morris family is hurting today. Former Colonials defensive back Josh O'Bannon passed away early this morning. His family has posted information regarding his passing on his Facebook Page. If you are a student at Robert Morris, you can look up his page by searching for "Josh OB" in Facebook.
If you are not a student, here is some of what his sister posted early this morning:
"For those of you that dont know, Josh "OB" Obannon passed away this morning. He was surrounded by his family, friends, and military family. He had been working so hard to join the National Guard. While he was at drill this past weekend, he collapsed on the obstacle course. They brought him to Riverside Hospital. The doctors told us that his muscles were breaking down and that he was serverly dehydrated. When we first saw him arounn 1230pm he was alert, talking and on his way for more treatment in ICU. Everyone rushed to his bedside. Almost 15 hours later, his body couldnt handle all the things that were happening to him. He passed away around 4am this morning."As you can imagine, there has already been an outpouring of support and well-wishes from friends of "OB". He was a tremendous presence on the football field, if not for his talent then definitely for his personality. He was definitely a guy that you got the impression enjoyed every minute of life with a wide smile on his face.
If his family or Robert Morris gives anything out about arrangements or anything and I find out, I'll pass it along."
I read this piece on "Goon's World," a blog dedicated to the Northa Dakota Sioux, on the recent NCAA Coaches meetings on the topic of the concerns of players leaving early to go professional. I think some great points are brought up, it is definitely well worth the read.
Here is the article:
"Here is an on going debate that is proving to be pretty interesting and is worth taking a look at, however, the NCAA coaches should tread lightly and proceed very carefully with this issue. The college coaches do not have a lot to bargin with and could do more damage than good. Honestly, I would rather see my team have a player like Toews or Oshie play two to three year than not have them at all. By having these types of blue chip hockey players might be enough to give my team a chance to win a national title. There also doesn't need to be any new rules made by the NCAA, unless the NHL is going to compensate the NCAA team they have just taken the player from.
NCAA coaches are meeting this week in Naples, Florida and NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly and NHLPA Executive Director Paul Kelly are there to listen to their concerns, among them, the increased numbers of underclassmen leaving the college ranks to turn pro.
Prior to the start of the 2006-2007 NHL season, 33 players with college eligibility signed NHL contracts, up from 19 prior to the lockout.
So far this season, 16 players have agreed to NHL deals; the most noteworthy being Kyle Turris, who finished his freshman season in Wisconsin before agreeing to a contract with the Phoenix Coyotes.
Unlike Turris, New York Islanders forward Kyle Okposo made his decision to leave the Minnesota Golden Gophers in December, a move that is still regarded as highly unusual.
The manner in which some NHL teams deal with colleges and college players is also a huge area of concern, specific to unsigned or undrafted unrestricted free agent sophomores who in some cases are hounded to distraction by NHL teams hoping to sign him.
The league and Players' Association agreed a protocol to discourage this needs to be considered.
Unlike the CHL and the IIHF, the NCAA doesn't receive financial compensation from the NHL, primarily because the NCAA won't allow it. However, there was discussion with college coaches on implementing a development fee whereby NHL teams would have to provide compensation to college teams if they pull a player out early.
Because of the salary cap, NHL teams are using young players to keep costs down, while there is also incentive for these players to get into the NHL as quickly as possible to burn through the financial restrictions of the entry-level contract.
It's unlikely any changes will take effect by next season."
Source: Goon's World
I am a little behind in keeping up with the ECHL Playoffs, and our RMU Players who are involved, but here is the current update; Ryan Cruthers and the Utah Grizzles have advanced to the second round.
The 6 seeded Utah Grizzles defeated the 3rd seeded Fresno Falcons in Round 1, 4-2 in a best of 7 series.
Round 2 has Utah matched up against the 2nd seeded Victoria Salmon Kings. The series is currently tied 1-1. Game one went to Utah in a 6-0 win, only to be routed in game two after leading early 1-0, to fall 6-1.
Ryan Cruthers has played in all 8 games, scoring 3 points (1 goal/2 assists) and he is even in +/-.
Game 3 is this Thursday (May 1st) in Utah at 7:05pm.
Right now the CHA coaches and conference members are in NCAA meetings, no word has come out yet online or from anyone affiliated with the CHA Conference, but we sure do hope to hear some news soon.
I expect further information to become available as early as this coming weekend.
Here are the Team Awards for the 2007-2008 Men's Team:
MVP- Ryan Cruthers
Defensive Player of the Year- Chris Kaufman ***
Offensive Player of the Year- Ryan Cruthers
Freshman of the Year- Nathan Longpre & Denny Urban
Most Inspirational Player- Joel Gasper***
Student AThlete of the Year- Joel Gasper**
Most Improved Player- Branden Gay
* number of years winning award
Plus Gasper will won the scholar athlete award from the athletic department as well as named the Cubic (Sp) award winner as outstanding senior
Change of plans from what I earlier posted about being a guest on "andrew and dan in the afternoon"...Dan is out sick, so I get to guest host. 3pm-5pm...you better listen.
Listen Live: Rmuradio.com
We've discussed the non-conference schedule for next season briefly, but let's go ahead and take a more in depth look at the games Robert Morris will be playing outside of the CHA next year:
Ferris State (CCHA) @ Island Sports Center (2 games)
-This will be the first time these two teams will have met
-'07-'08 Overall Record: 18-16-5
-Non-Conf Record: 6-4-1
-Away Record: 2-4-0
-Leading Scorer: Jr #8 Cody Chupp - 30pts - 11g-19a
-Penalty Kill: 85%
Quinnipiac (ECAC) on the road (2 games)
-Record of 6-1-1, lifetime against RMU
-Defeated RMU last season on Dec 7 & 8 with scores of 4-2, 5-1.
-'07-'08 Overall Record: 20-15-4
-10 Seniors graduated from last year's squad (two of their top three leading scorers,
Nelson and Bates)
Lake Superior State (CCHA) on the road (2 games)
-Record of 2-0 Lifetime against RMU, both wins came in November of 2005 (3-0, 4-3)
-Overall Record: 10-20-7
-Non-Conf Record: 3-5-1
-4 of their top 5 scores return to this year's team, but non went over 30 points on the season.
American International (Atlantic) @ Island Sports Center (2 games)
-Record of 0-2 Lifetime against RMU, losses came this season (2-10, 3-6)
-Overall Record: 8-23-5
-Non-Conf Record: 0-6-2
-7 seniors graduated from last year's roster
Ohio State (CCHA) home and home, Includes Showcase at Mellon Arena (2 games)
-Record of 0-1-1 Lifetime against RMU, both games played last season (t-5-5, l-4-3)
-Non-Conf Record: 5-7-1
-Last year's roster was made up of 16 underclassmen, 8 seniors graduated
-Second Leading Scorer: #26 Peter Boyd returns as a Sophomore (24 points in 41 games)
Princeton (Ivy) on the road (1 game)
-Record of 2-1 Lifetime against RMU, won last season's match 5-2
-Overall Record: 21-14-0, an 11 win increase since '05-'06
-Non Conf Record: 7-6-0
-Top 3 Leading Scores return: #6 Lee Junbinville, #16 Brett Wilson, #27 Cam MacIntyre
-Top Goaltender returns: #32 Zane Kalemba: S% of .916 and GAA of 2.38-
19 wins in 30 starts - 5 shutouts
St Cloud State (WCHA) on the road (2 games)
-Record of 2-0 Lifetime against RMU, both games played in '05-'06 (7-0,6-2...former Penguin Prospect Joe Jensen was the dagger against RMU in both games)
-Overall Record: 19-16-5
-Non-Conf Record: 7-4-1
-Top 3 Leading Scores return (all underclassmen): #19 Ryan Lasch - 53pts in 40 games,
#9 Garrett Roe-45pts in 39 games,#12 Andreas Nodl-44pts in 40 games
(draft rights owned by Philadelphia Flyers)
last meeting didn't turn out well, this one might not either
Lefty McFadden Tournament (Dayton, OH)
Opponents not scheduled yet, will most likely open the season
Last Year's tournament:
Friday, Oct. 12
Notre Dame vs. Wisconsin - 5:05 p.m.
Ohio State vs. Mercyhurst - 8:05 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 13
Consolation Game - 4:35 p.m.
Championship Game - 7:35 p.m.
E.J. Nutter Center, Dayton, Ohio
Ryerson @ Island Sports Center (exhibition)
-RMU won last year's meeting 8-5 for the season opener
-RMU saw 13 powerplays, but only converterd on 3
Team USA 18 Development Team (exhibition) on the road (1 game)
-Record of 1-2-1 Lifetime against RMU
-A great game is always played, gives RMU a chance to play against excellent talent, as well as a great chance for the RMU Coaching Staff a chance to build a relationship with the development team, where one day RMU could be pulling directly from this group of young prospects.
Rumors were swirling for awhile, but I don't like to post information regarding players that may not yet be true. A fan on a message board had posted the official link to transfers to Division III schools, Kyle Frieday has been officially added to that list.
Frieday appeared in 13 games this past season for the Colonials, putting up 6 points (1 goal and 5 assists). He appeared in 35 career games, with 17 total points (4 goals and 13 assists).
Here is the link that shows his transfer status: Adrian
As for an update on the College Hockey America Conference and the automatic bid situation, no word has come out yet. One thing is certain, the CHA will continue to exist no matter what.
Speculation about Bemidji State's future regarding their hockey program, was boiling down to the construction of a new arena...well, that has ended...with GOOD NEWS! According to Inside College Hockey, an article came out on their site, regarding the situation with Bemidji State, on the potential of a new arena being constructed in the future.
The latest we had heard, was the bill went to the table to be passed and it has gone through. "Portions of the $716 million bill that became law on Monday (April 7) will mean new D-I arenas for Minnesota Duluth and Bemidji State, and a new multiple ice sheet facility that will house the D-III program at Minnesota Crookston. Also included in the bill was $6.5 million for upgrades and improvements at the 19-year-old National Hockey Center at St. Cloud State."
This is the first step for the Bemidji State program to staying afloat. Everyone is well aware that the University's ultimate goal is to get into the WCHA conference (the first step towards this was their scheduling of non-conference games agreement). The overall goal is to keep the program alive and strong, no matter where the Beavers play.
This is great news for the College Hockey America Conference as it will help gain more attraction to the conference as current teams are structuring themselves for higher levels of competition.
Here is the Article
Tomorrow afternoon at Joe Walton Stadium, the RMU Men's Lacrosse team will face off against the Villanova Wildcats. I know it isn't hockey, but we have to show some support for our spring time programs.
RMU and MCA-TV will be covering the event, on a tape-delay basis (the game will air Wednesday on MCA-TV, RMU-TV's airing time will be announced soon). So come out and enjoy some Colonial Lacrosse!
After a great senior season at Robert Morris, the honors keep coming in for Ryan Cruthers. Inside College Hockey has placed Ryan on their NCAA 3rd Team All-American.
In case you forgot, Ryan put up outstanding numbers this season for the Colonials, in 34 games Ryan had 49 points, 22 goals and 27 assists.
Here are the other players who made the 3rd Team spot:
INSIDE COLLEGE HOCKEY
2007-08 ALL-AMERICA THIRD TEAM
|G||Richard Bachman||Colorado College||Fr.||25-9-1, 1.85 GAA, .931 sv%|
|D||Taylor Chorney||North Dakota||Jr.||42 GP, 3-21—24|
|D||Grant Clitsome||Clarkson||Sr.||39 GP, 5-19—22|
|F||Ryan Cruthers||Robert Morris||Sr.||34 GP, 22-27—49|
|F||Ryan Lasch||St. Cloud State||So.||40 GP, 25-28—53|
|F||Mike Radja||New Hampshire||Sr.||36 GP, 19-24—43|
For more on Inside College Hockey's All-American Teams: Go Here
This came out a few days ago, but I just caught it...so I'm a little behind. I figure even though this isn't our team, that it is still worth presenting to the people, for the fact that this is a "PRO" contract that has been signed.
Niagara's Matt Caruana has signed a one year deal with the 2007 Stanley Cup Champion Anaheim Ducks. This is a great accomplishment not only for Niagara, but the College Hockey America Conference as well. Matt finished at Niagara with ranking of fifth in career assists with 78, tied for sixth in career points with 129 and ranks ninth in career goals with 51.
Read more here: Niagara Purple Eagles
Don't forget to watch the 2008 Frozen Four Semi-Final games on April 10th:
The first game starts at 6pm and the second at 9pm, both games will be broadcasted on ESPN2
Boston College vs North Dakota
Michigan vs Notre Dame
Check out the Skills Challenge on Friday April 11th, at 7pm on ESPNU
The Frozen Four Championship is Saturday April 12th, at 7pm on ESPN
Trevor Lewis, who will be coming to RMU next season, has been named the Player of the Year in the EJHL. Lewis finished the season with 67 points (31g - 36a) in 45 games, his club finished the season 30-9-1 overall.
Lewis may have a chance to join the list of players who have come out of the Syracuse Stars in th EJHL who have made the NHL, players such as:
Tim Connelly, Brian Gionta and Robert Esche to name a few.
Congratulations Trevor in being named the Player of the Year.
The Video was created by RMU Senior, Kelly Burke.
So far all of the RMU players who have signed pro contracts have been American citizens. From what I have been told, there will be more signings in the coming weeks, but some of our boys from up north (Canadian) have had some issues with getting sign due to "work-Visa" problems.
Obviously, if you are not an American born citizen, when you apply to work in the United States, you have to apply for a work-Visa, their student Visa's do not allow them to play professional hockey, since they would be getting a pay check.
It sounds like this issue will be resolved soon enough, these type of things happen all the time.
(Rob Cowan is technically an American Citizen since he has applied for citizenship with his wife to stay in the states)
"WEST VALLEY CITY, Utah - The Utah Grizzlies announced that the New York Islanders of the National Hockey League have reassigned goaltender Michael Mole and rookie defenseman Andrew MacDonald from the Bridgeport Sound Tigers of the American Hockey League to Utah.
It was also announced that rookie forward Ryan Cruthers has been returned to the Grizzlies from Bridgeport.
The Grizzlies are the ECHL affiliate of the Islanders of the NHL and the Sound Tigers of the AHL."
Ryan did not dress in Friday's game with the Sound Tigers when they played against the Philadelphia Phantoms. No word as to why Ryan has been sent back down, my guess would be that his chances of playing this late in the season would be minimal and based on his prior stint in Utah, he has shown that he should get some playing time to make a case for himself with the AHL club next year.
The new kid on the block in the Women's CHA, the Syracuse Orange, have found their first Head Coach, Paul Flanagan, formerly of St. Lawrence University. In Paul's 10 years at St. Lawrence, he posted a record of 230-80-24, as well as 5 Frozen Four Appearances. His winning percentage ranks 3rd nationally among active Division I coaches, he is also ranked 6th in career victories and his 5 Frozen Four appearances are tied for 1st in the nation.
You can read more information about their coaching hire here: Syracuse Athletics
Tom Biondich, who recently signed with the Gwinnett Gladiators of the ECHL, has been let go. There is some speculation as to why Tom is no longer with the team, some believe that it may have been a choice made by Tom himself.
No official word has be made to the reason for his departure from the team.
Listen to "Andrew and Dan in the Afternoon" at 3:20pm today, I will be on to talk RMU Hockey as well as some Penguins/NHL talk
Listen Live: Here
Rob Cowan played in his first game last night in the IHL with Port Huron, he had an assist on the game winner and was even, but more importantly, well, just watch and see:
Ryan Cruthers has been officially called up to the Bridgeport Sound Tigers to play in the AHL. He will be in the lineup this Friday night.
You can watch Ryan's first game here on the B2networks, it will cost about $6 to view the game.
Here is Ryan's player stat page that has been created for him, you can track his stats: theahl.com
The Sound Tigers Home Page
If it wasn't already official enough for you, here is the latest article on rmucolonials.com about our recent pro contracts:
*Note: this is not an April fools joke since it is the 1st of the month*
RMU has signed Stefan Lachapelle today out of the Hawkesbury Hawks in the COJHL. Stefan is a centre and was the captain of his team, and his numbers from the past two years look like this:
60 games played, 94 points (41g & 53a), 60 penalty minutes, 19 power play goals, 20 power play assists, 8 short handed goals, 4 short handed assists and 6 game winning goals.
55 games played, 44 points (18g & 26a), 91 penalty minutes, 4 power play goals, 8 power play assists and 2 short handed goals.
Obviously the number that stands out the most is the improvement of 50 total points from one season to the next.
Lachapelle was also named to the COJHL Second Team, as well as the Most Outstanding Graduate. Source: Cornwall Standard Freeholder
Here are some updates statistically on the guys who just recently signed from this year's team:
Each of these players currently competes in the ECHL, except for Rob Cowan who is in the IHL.
#17 Tom Biondich - Gwinnett Gladiators: 3 games, 0 points, +/- of 0, 2 penalty minutes. Tom is currently not listed on their roster.
#22 Sean Berkstresser - Wheeling Nailers: 5 games, 1 Goal (1 point), +/- of 1, 9 penalty minutes
#27 Ryan Cruthers - Utah Grizzles: 3 games, 1 assist (1point), +/- of 0, 2 penalty minutes. Ryan also scored in a shootout to win the game for the Grizzles as well.
#27 Joel Gasper - Johnstown Chiefs: 6 games, 1 assist (1point), +/- of -3, 4 penalty minutes
#34 Chris Kaufman - Bakersfield Condors: 6 games, 0 points, +/- of 3, 2 penalty minutes
Rob Cowan - Port Huron Icehawks: information unavailable at this time
Other notable players who have signed in recent years playing in professional hockey:
#17 Joey Olson - Johnstown Chiefs: 36 games, 28 points (14g & 14a), +/- of 17, 16 penalty minutes
#8 Aaron Clarke - Wheeling Nailers: 57 games, 36 points (19a & 17a), +/- of -7, 38 penalty minutes