Oregon's move to the Big Ten doesn't appear on ice: Mailbag
On Oregon's hockey future, where it could go wrong for the football team, Northwest baseball allegiances and the Honey Badger's return to the grid.
This mailbag is long overdue.
There’s been a bit happening.
(Gestures wildly to surroundings.)
Let’s dive right in with the question on everyone’s mind:
Does this mean Wisco won’t be in last place again in Big Ten hockey next year? — Vaporizer
Sorry, Wick. Unfortunately the Badgers might have to get comfortable in the basement. While Oregon has competed successfully at the collegiate club hockey levels, a move up to Division I hockey to follow Oregon’s transition to the Big Ten doesn’t appear likely.
“Hockey is not under consideration at this time,” said Oregon assistant AD Jimmy Stanton in a text.
One can dream, right?
The Big Ten fields seven men’s hockey teams. Wisconsin won the national championship over Penn State on the women’s side in March. Hockey is very much a part of the Big Ten footprint.
Not so much here on the West Coast.
And you thought the travel schedule would be bad for the softball teams in the Big Ten? At least they can still knock out nonconference games on the West Coast. Any Oregon hockey program would have to get very familiar with trips to Denver and Tempe. And it would probably need Washington to make a similar jump.
Ducks and Huskies at a renovated Mac Court? Giddy up.
Interestingly enough, the Ducks and Huskies club teams didn’t play in 2022-23 for the first time in years. While Washington went 19-0 in the regular season and knocked off Utah 5-2 in the Division II ACHA Pac-8 Conference title game, the Ducks mounted an up-and-down campaign in their first year since moving up to the Division I club level. The Ducks finished the year 7-18, with their 62 goals in 25 games ranking 62nd out of 70 DI club programs.
Good news, however: Despite their different conferences, the Ducks have the Huskies back on the schedule in 2023-24 for noncon action in January.
Many thought the Noah Sewell/Justin Flowe, DJ Johnson/Brandon Dorlus combo would help put Oregon near the top of the league defensively last year. Especially w/Lanning. Without diving into why that never panned out, what are we overlooking/have the most underserved confidence in this year? — Mikey G.