Power 5 schools that could most easily add NCAA men's hockey based on existing arena availability

Discussion in 'NCAA, U Sports, and other college' started by Big Z Man 1990, Oct 5, 2017.

  1. Big Z Man 1990

    Big Z Man 1990 Registered User

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    Outside of the California FBS schools of course which I have mentioned numerous times:

    ACC:
    Florida State (arena: Donald L. Tucker Civic Center, previously used by multiple minor pro teams including an ECHL team, also used by FSU basketball teams since 1981)
    Georgia Tech (arena: Philips Arena, currently only has one major tenant, the NBA's Hawks, last hockey tenant, the Thrashers, moved to Winnipeg in 2011)
    Miami (arena: BB&T Center, only has ever had one major tenant, the NHL's Florida Panthers)
    Pittsburgh (arena: PPG Paints Arena, only has ever had one major tenant, the NHL's Pittsburgh Penguins)
    Wake Forest (arena: Greensboro Coliseum, used by multiple pro and college tenants over the years,
    currently houses a NBA G-League team and the basketball teams of UNC Greensboro)

    Big 12:
    Oklahoma (arena: Chesapeake Energy Arena, only current tenant is NBA's OKC Thunder, last hockey tenant, the CHL's Blazers, left in 2009)

    Big Ten (only current FBS conference to sponsor hockey):
    Northwestern (arena: Allstate Arena, only current permanent tenant is the AHL's Chicago Wolves following DePaul's departure in 2017).
    Rutgers (arena: Prudential Center, only permanent tenant thus far has been the New Jersey Devils, the Nets played there 2 years while waiting for Barclays Center to be completed)

    Pac-12:
    Utah (arena: Vivint Smart Home Arena, only current tenant is Utah Jazz, last hockey tenant, the Grizzlies, left in 1997)

    SEC:
    Kentucky (arena: Rupp Arena, used already by men's basketball team, previously used by 2 minor league hockey teams)
    Tennessee (arena: Knoxville Civic Auditorium and Coliseum, used by Knoxville Ice Bears of SPHL as well as by Tennessee's current club team so nothing would change if program upgraded to varsity status)
    Vanderbilt (arena: Bridgestone Arena, only major winter tenant has been the Predators)

    The reason for using existing venues is to cut back on start up costs by not investing money into building a new venue. So few Power 5 schools have are near arenas that have so many openings during the traditional college hockey season and yet don't have NCAA hockey. This isn't to say that these schools will add the sport, it's merely a suggestion. And if at least four of the ACC schools mentioned added the sport, it would bring the number of schools with hockey in the conference to 6 - and you know what that means.
     
  2. ScottK

    ScottK Registered User

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    The problem with using existing arenas is finding the open dates on Friday and Saturday nights through the fall/winter. Nearly all NCAA games are played on Friday and Saturday nights. This is why schools need an on-campus arena. Arizona State plays a couple of games per season in the Coyotes arena, but plays the majority of their home games in a rink that seats under 1000.
     
  3. MexicoRon

    MexicoRon Registered User

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    Wake Forest is incorrect. The university is actually much, much closer to the Winston-Salem Annex, a 4,000 seat arena that needs work. Also, it doesn't have a major tennant if you don't count the FHL Carolina Thunderbirds, which I can't see lasting more than a season.

    As with ScottK said, availability in many of the arenas you listed wouldn't work. As far as NCAA D 1, the only one that makes sense to me in Southeast would be Florida State and the much overlooked Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia. Liberty has a nice 4,000 seat arena on campus. Doesn't need to be a "Power 5" school, just need to be a school with deep pockets (donors to spare).
     
  4. jasonr90

    jasonr90 Registered User

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    Good list thanks for putting it together.

    How about Nebraska? Lincoln Stars right there, but would you just consider their arena to be too small?

    I would think Northwestern or Rutgers would be the next to join of the Power 5 schools. They should up the number of teams you need for a conference to 8. Big Ten hockey coming in screwed up some great conferences (mostly the old WCHA). But that's just my two cents on it

    Alaska already has their teams, the big Washington and Oregon schools would be cool to see too. WHL already there though...
     
  5. kij

    kij Registered User

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    Lincoln's arena has seating for 3,500, more than enough for hockey.
     
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  6. Big Z Man 1990

    Big Z Man 1990 Registered User

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    Right now the plans for the site of the Meadowlands Arena is to build a hotel and casino. Maybe Rutgers can sway the people in charge to build a more intimate hockey arena for the Scarlet Knights instead. That could work.
     
  7. kij

    kij Registered User

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    To the best of my memory all the ice hockey stuff is still in the arena. Why bother do anything than just get the former IZOD center running and just use the lower bowl like the Edmonton Oil Kings do (or did) with the oilers).
     
  8. MiamiHockey

    MiamiHockey Registered User

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    NCAA Hockey is not economically feasible unless the university owns & operates the arena. The cost of renting any of the facilities you mention would be prohibitive.
     
  9. BOS358

    BOS358 Registered User

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    I know a brick wall is more likely to answer than Big Z Man, but I'm curious if he knows the Title IX situations of each school and can figure out a source of capital for these (or any) other schools.
     
  10. Go Donbass

    Go Donbass Registered User

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    Certainly not a Power 5 school, but uscho.com reported that Oakland University in Detroit is looking to add D1 men's and women's hockey.
     
  11. HisIceness

    HisIceness Pissed off Canes fan

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    Correct. The Joel Annex was built right next to the Joel Coliseum (home of WF mens and women's basketball) because the Coliseum was not built with Hockey in mind. The G-Boro Coliseum is already busy during most of the calendar year, it actually plays host to a lot of concerts that don't go to either Charlotte or Raleigh, is home to the ACC Tournament, UNC-G mens and women's basketball, the NBA D-Leagues Greensboro Swarm (though they play in an annex similar to that of the Joel Coliseum, it is on the very same land), and various other events. If the ECHL ever makes a return to the Triad, thats where the team will likely play.

    Another one that could work would be the Carolina Coliseum (U of South Carolina). I don't know what regulation-sized ice the NCAA uses but the CC isn't built for it, but that didn't stop the ECHLs Columbia Inferno from playing there for 6 years.

    I suppose if NC State ever got a team, Dorton Arena (former home of the ECHL Icecaps) could be a potential home, that is if they ever get a proper AC unit installed.

    This is all just crazy speculation anyway, but it's a fun topic nonetheless.
     
  12. swoopster

    swoopster my "helmets"

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    Wayne State tried it for a bit and gave it up in 2007 0r 2008. They played in a tiny building with a small seating capacity, so I wish Oakland U luck.
     
  13. Go Donbass

    Go Donbass Registered User

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    Wayne State had a ton of problems with their program, not the least of which was a lack of an on campus arena. The arena they played in was nowhere near the school, so attracting fans was next to impossible. I would have to re-read the article, but I believe Oakland U. is talking about building, or already has an on campus arena. I don't think this would be WSU the redux.

    Still not sure why Navy has never created a D1 hockey program. And Syracuse has had a women's program for a number of years, so a little baffled as to why they never added a men's program.
     
  14. garnetpalmetto

    garnetpalmetto Global Moderator

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    The ice plant at Carolina Coliseum was dismantled and sold off. I think I heard it went to an arena in South America (Peru maybe?), but don't quote me on that. Colonial Life Arena, however, has an ice plant, but scheduling would be a bear since the men and women both play out of it.
     
  15. No Fun Shogun

    No Fun Shogun 34-38-61-10-13-15

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    Eh, Northwestern hockey in All State would probably be a disaster. Their draw that "far" away from Evanston is already fairly small and they'd inherently be second fiddle to the already established Wolves.

    When it comes to Illinois, there just isn't a power five school that I think could fit right now. I want to see the Illini get a team more than almost anything, but they need Jimmy John or Shahid Khan to donate half a billion for a new arena first, and I'm not sure that's on the horizon. If anything, as of right now, a smaller school is probably closer to getting it done if they got a mid-level donor. As dumb as it may sound, Illinois State might actually be better suited for a D-I team than anyone right now. There's already a hockey arena in Bloomington and Illinois State would definitely draw better than a minor or junior league team, so if alumnus donated a dozen or so million that might be enough. That's probably far-fetched, though.

    Some Chicago school might fit as well, but I suppose the question in the city itself is if it's a hockey town or a Blackhawks town.

    tl;dnr - nobody in the state of Illinois for the foreseeable future.
     
  16. JMCx4

    JMCx4 Gateway to Hockey

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    Just spit ballin' in the spirit of Z Man's original post ... Not Power 5, but Power 5-adjacent: University of Nebraska-Omaha's two year-old Baxter Arena seats 7,898 for hockey in two tiers. It would certainly be a suitable venue for NCAA Division I hockey, and it has a second ice rink that could be used for team practices when the main arena is occupied for other purposes. It would satisfy MiamiHockey's caveat: "NCAA Hockey is not economically feasible unless the university owns & operates the arena." and there's a small but strong hockey fan base in town courtesy of the USHL's Omaha Lancers.
     
  17. Hollywood3

    Hollywood3 Bison/Jet/Moose Fan

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    Isn't that the "UNO Mavericks" that already operate?
     
  18. psavitt

    psavitt Registered User

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    Nebraska-Omaha already has a NCAA D1 program
     
  19. JMCx4

    JMCx4 Gateway to Hockey

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    Whoops - you two are right! Wasn't thinking straight. Going into timeout now.
     
  20. jasonr90

    jasonr90 Registered User

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    Haha that's allright, I like what you were getting at. The Big Ten needs another team. I think about Northwestern a lot (because of the Blackhawks), or Illinois with a growing hockey population. Rutgers too being in New Jersey. Pittsburgh might be a choice too (as an affiliate)
     

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