The NCAA/College Effect

Discussion in 'NHL Draft - Prospects' started by ummerr, Sep 23, 2011.

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  1. ummerr

    ummerr Registered User

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    For a longtime fan of the NHL, but someone who's recently started researching prospects....

    What effect does a player going to college have on their career? Does it slow a player's development or is it the same as playing in the CHL? For an NHL caliber player, what's the behind the desire to play in the NCAA?
     
  2. Herby

    Herby Culture Changer

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    This has been debated about 100000x times in the decade or so I have been on this board. And there are good arguments for both sides.

    Some players, even the high end talents place a high value on getting an education and living the college experience. Now I know the CHL offers full year tuition and books for every year played in their league. But it's not the same, not even close.

    On the flip side, college is not for everyone.

    The skill level is higher in the CHL but the level of play is higher in the NCAA if that makes any sense. Mainly because the CHL is 16-20 year olds and the NCAA is 18 to 24 year olds.

    The CHL has better coaching. You will get amazing coaching at the top college programs but the CHL has better coaches top to bottom.

    The CHL plays more games and hockey is a much bigger part of your life than if you go to college.

    Ultimately, if you are a great player you are going to make it. As they say, the cream rises to the top. If my son were a top level hockey player I would suggest he go the NCAA route just because college is something you can only experience once, and if you work hard the money and NHL career is ust as likely as if you go the CHL route.
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2011
  3. MN_Gopher

    MN_Gopher Registered User

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    Just to add.

    The majority of college players grow, mentally and physically, between their freshmen and sophmore years. Unless you are planing on making a two year committ go to the CHL early.

    The better talent is in the CHL. Its spread across three leagues and within those even more conferences. Recruiting vs drafting. The NCAA is jam packed in some leagues and within those leagues the top teams.
     
  4. DekeLikeYouMeanIt

    DekeLikeYouMeanIt RIP

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    Awesome. Exactly what I would say.. and even more... but I would also add that injuries happen all the time and career ending injuries also happen. Getting a Uni or College degree is essential in a contact sport like hockey unless you're an amazing talent and you're already getting paid in gold on your ELC, in which case.. who needs to work after cashing 2-3mil a season?!
     
  5. ummerr

    ummerr Registered User

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    :handclap: I appreciate you taking the time to summarize the arguments.
     
  6. S E P H

    S E P H @SEPH_WHL

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    Pros for college: Maturity, better frame, and more practice for improving weaknesses. Better for 2-way players.

    Pros for CHL: Better talent, more games, much more noticeable, and more NHL readiness. Better for high skilled players.

    This is my take and I love both leagues.
     
  7. Herby

    Herby Culture Changer

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    No problem.

    College hockey is a wonderful game. If you ever get the chance to check out a game don't miss out. The atmosphere is out of this world and level of hockey is pretty darn good to.
     
  8. Torts

    Torts Dont Doubt the Trout

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    the debate goes on and on

    CHL: If your at the top of your age group skill wise this is the best bet for your development. You can come in as a 15 or 16 year old and play 68 games which simulates an NHL season very well. The rumour that school takes a back seat in the CHL in my opinion isn't true. These players still have classes to go to just on an adjusted schedule. Every team has academic advisers that monitor the players grades and are in contact with representatives from the respective schools. The hockey is great and this is defiantly the fastest route to Pro Hockey.

    NCAA: As oblivious as it seems, a large amount of NHL/Pro caliber players come from the ncaa ranks. A large percentage of kids at 15 or 16 are not skilled enough to play in the CHL. They are then most likely sent to play Jr. A or Jr. B which is still a high level of hockey. I've watched some Jr. A games and some are actually very exciting. A couple year playing Jr. A allows the late bloomers to develop and once they are old enough a huge amount of good players receive scholarships to American schools (Div 1, 2 or 3). Some Jr.A players get drafted then move to NCAA. After a couple years in college you really start to see these players developing more and getting chances at NHL camps year in and year out.

    In conclusion, there is no solving this debate as everyone has their own views. In my opinion, if your good enough and serious enough about pursuing a career in pro hockey, the CHL would be the route to take. However if your a good player but cant crack CHL lineups sometimes waiting it out in Jr. A or Jr. B then taking a NCAA scholarship may also be an effective route to the NHL.
     
  9. Stories

    Stories Science!

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    Both are great as fantastic players have come from both leagues, but the CHL tends to fast-track kids better than NCAA (in general).

    As an American, NCAA has great appeal because of the brand of college sports. Many kids grow up rooting for a college team, and that aspect is quite appealing to a lot of people. Similar to how kids root for a professional sports team growing up. Many kids often end up playing for a team they rooted for as a child.

    That said, kids like Patrick Kane who were clearly destined to be NHL studs, they should probably be in the CHL since they can have the very high level of play before they even get drafted since very few (except the really young ones) NCAA kids are drafted after playing NCAA hockey.
     
  10. BluechipBulletin

    BluechipBulletin Registered User

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    Through minor midget, there's really no difference between the US and Canada. The two systems are comparable and US teams are competitive against Canadian teams.

    The difference comes in the 16 and 17 year old seasons (a player's NHL draft year and the year before) - the CHL seems to be slightly better at developing players when they are 16 and 17 years old than the USHL is. The obvious exception is the NTDP, which is clearly the best option for anyone eligible to play for them.

    When a player hits 18 and enters college (some later bloomers enter college when they're older, and they obviously aren't relevant to our conversation), the NCAA is probably the better option. Players mature and develop at a faster rate in the NCAA because of the added practice time and the fact that they are required to manage their time, live on their own, etc.

    When a CHL player goes undrafted, a lot of times that player is seen as having no future in hockey and CHL teams will often begin developing and utilizing that player in a role geared more to serve that CHL team's ends than to develop a professional prospect. By an undrafted player's 19 year old season, the CHL team is basically trying to develop the best overager they can, in hopes that the player will return and help them win.

    If you're one of the top guys and have a legitimate chance at going in the first round of the NHL Draft, I'd say you're probably better off going the CHL route (unless, obviously, you're an American and have an NTDP invite). If you're not such a sure thing to get drafted in the top two rounds of the NHL Draft, you're much better off going the NCAA route.

    Ideally, the CHL would become a U18 league, so CHL players would retain NCAA eligibility and CHL players would truly get the best of both worlds. But there's no reason for the CHL to make that change, and the NCAA would be foolish to allow CHLers to play the way the CHL is currently structured.
     
  11. Gump Hasek

    Gump Hasek Spleen Merchant

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    What a strange thread.

    The CHL is clearly the better developmental route for players, it is not even close. The NCAA meanwhile is best for marginal players. The CHL features overall much better coaching - coaches employing full pro systems play versus run and gun scatter-shot NCAA play. The CHL employs a pro style schedule that prepares players for the grind of professional hockey.

    Note the increasing numbers of US players choosing CHL over college.

    Note of late the growing number of players giving up college commitments after they've been drafted; this is because their NHL team usually strongly advises them to play in the CHL... because they are better prepared there.
     
  12. Fire Sweeney

    Fire Sweeney Registered User

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    There isn't any debate despite what the american media might claim, the CHL has always been the superior development league and always will be. If you have the talent, you chose the CHL, if not and you want a backup plan you chose the college route.
     
  13. HTT3*

    HTT3* Guest

    Lol? :shakehead
     
  14. JVR21

    JVR21 Registered User

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    Jonathan Toews laughs in your face. He's Canadian and he chose the college route.
     
  15. deanosaur

    deanosaur Registered User

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    I have nothing against the NCAA. However, I have been repeated annoyed with NCAA fan boys in the past. Just to throw that out there. I'm sure NCAA fans have been annoyed with CHL fans as well.
    Its too bad this debate happens more often than it should.
     
  16. bluesfan94

    bluesfan94 #PetroforNorris

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    Just because I can.
    2010-11 Leading scorers
    Daniel Sedin SEL
    Martin St. Louis NCAA
    Corey Perry CHL
    Henrik Sedin SEL
    Steven Stamkos CHL
    Jarome Iginla CHL
    Alexander Ovechkin KHL
    Teemu Selanne SM-Liiga
    Henrik Zetterberg SEL
    Brad Richards CHL

    Tally:
    CHL 4
    SEL 3
    KHL/SM-Liiga/NCAA 1

    Extending it to top-15
    Eric Staal CHL
    Jonathan Toews NCAA
    Claude Giroux CHL
    Ryan Getzlaf CHL
    Ryan Kesler NCAA

    Tally:
    CHL 7
    NCAA/SEL 3
    SM-Liiga/KHL 1

    Goals
    Corey Perry CHL
    Steven Stamkos CHL
    Jarome Iginla CHL
    Daniel Sedin SEL
    Ryan Kesler NCAA
    Patrick Marleau CHL
    Jeff Carter CHL
    Patrick Sharp NCAA
    Bobby Ryan CHL
    Danny Briere CHL
    Michael Grabner CHL

    Tally:
    CHL 8
    NCAA 2
    SEL 1

    Assists
    Henrik SedinSEL
    Martin St. Louis NCAA
    Daniel Sedin SEL
    Ryan Getzlaf CHL
    Henrik Zetterberg SEL
    Alexander Ovechkin KHL
    Mike Ribeiro CHL
    Claude Grioux CHL
    Lubomir Visnovsky Slovak
    Teemu Selanne SM-Liiga

    Tally:
    SEL/CHL 3
    NCAA/KHL/Slovak/SM-Liiga 1

    =/-
    Zdeno Chara Slovak/CHL
    David Backes NCAA
    Toni Lydman SM-Liiga
    Kevin Bieksa NCAA
    Daniel Sedin SEL
    Matt Carle NCAA
    Andrej Mezaros Slovak/CHL
    Adam McQuaid CHL
    Nathan Horton CHL
    Dan Hamhuis CHL

    Tally:
    CHL/NCAA 3
    Slovak/CHL 2
    SEL/SM-Liiga 1

    GAA (35 G+)
    Tim Thomas NCAA
    Roberto Luongo CHL
    Pekka Rinne SM-Liiga
    Jonathan Quick NCAA
    Henrik Lundqvist SEL
    Corey Crawford CHL
    Marc-Andre Fleury CHL
    Carey Price CHL
    Antti Niemi SM-Liiga
    Martin Brodeur CHL

    Tally:
    CHL 5
    NCAA/SM-Liiga 2
    SEL 1

    Sv%
    Tim Thomas NCAA
    Roberto Luongo CHL
    Pekka Rinne Sm-Liiga
    Jonas Hiller NLA
    Cam Ward CHL
    Carey Price CHL
    Henrik Lundqvist SEL
    Tomas Vokoun Czech
    Ilya Bryzgalov KHL
    James Reimer CHL

    Tally:
    CHL 4
    NCAA/SEL/SM-Liiga/NLA/Czech/KHL 1

    Of those players:

    Canadian Players in the NCAA:
    Martin St. Louis
    Kevin Bieksa
    Patrick Sharp
    Jonathan Toews

    American Players in the CHL:
    Patrick Kane
    Bobby Ryan

    Top Prospects (according to the HF ranking):
    1. Brayden Schenn CHL
    2. Ryan Johansen CHL
    3. Jonathan Bernier CHL
    4. Oliver Ekman-Larsson Swe-2
    5. David Rundblad SEL
    6. Vladamir Tarasenko KHL
    7. Nino Niederreiter CHL
    8. Brett Connolly CHL
    9. Evgeny Kuznetsov KHL
    10. Mikael Granlund SM-Liiga
    11. Jacob Markstrom SEL
    12. Erik Gudbranson CHL
    13. Nazem Kadri CHL
    14. Jack Campbell USHL -> CHL
    15. Jaden Schwartz NCAA
    16. Travis Hamonic CHL
    17. Brandon Gormley CHL
    18. Jared Cowen CHL
    19. Cody Hodgson CHL
    20. Charlie Coyle NCAA

    Tally:
    CHL 12 (1 moved after draft year)
    SEL/KHL/NCAA 2
    SM-Liiga/Swe-2 1

    Canadians in NCAA:
    Jaden Schwartz

    Americans in the CHL:
    Jack Campbell


    That took up way too much time.
    http://www.usatoday.com/sports/hockey/nhl/2010-12-01-college-hockey-representation_N.htm


    Big name players who went to an NCAA school:
    Martin St. Louis (Vermont)
    Tim Thomas (Vermont)
    Ryan Kesler (Ohio State)
    David Backes (Minnesota State)
    Ryan Miller (Michigan State)
    Jonathan Toews (North Dakota)
    TJ Oshie (North Dakota)
    Jack Johnson (Michigan)
    Erik Johnson (Minnesota)
    Zach Parise (North Dakota)
    Patrick Sharp (Vermont)
    Kevin Bieksa (Bowling Green)
    Mike Cammalleri (Michigan)
    Dany Heatley (Wisconsin)
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2011
  17. bigd

    bigd Registered User

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    It would be interesting to see how many former NCAA players go on to upper management of an NHL team versus CHL players. How many NCAA players are in Executive positions after their playing days are over as opposed to CHL players. What is the average NHL player carreer, maybe 7 years? If you're not one of the top 50 NHL paid players how do you handle going from making 500G's or more to making maybe 100G's or less?
     
  18. Gump Hasek

    Gump Hasek Spleen Merchant

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    None of that had anything to do with the post you replied to. Nice non sequitur.

    Perhaps you could now post the statistics relating to the increasing numbers of American players moving into the CHL? Address the increasing numbers of players dropping college commitments and going to the CHL instead after they were drafted?

    28.5%? Most interesting would be a comparison to the the number of CHL players that played at least one game in the NHL during the same period. Thanks in advance.

    PS: Here is a link to the Hockey Hall of Fame.
    http://www.hhof.com/
    How many of its members are grads of Canadian junior hockey versus NCAA? Just wondering.
     
  19. Gump Hasek

    Gump Hasek Spleen Merchant

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    Great, but IIRC Jon Toews was also either ranked or drafted #1 overall in the WHL draft - despite declaring that he'd go to college. He was a stud, deemed the best player in his region by that draft, and as such he'd have succeeded pretty much regardless of the route chosen. He also left college early, FYI.
     
  20. bluesfan94

    bluesfan94 #PetroforNorris

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    I'll try. Okay so I started this, and after a while, I realized that at the time that most of the head coaches/GMs, etc were playing their youth hockey, there was a lot more competition for players, including the IHL, AHL, Central Hockey League, ECHL, etc. and it got too convoluted. However, for the teams that I did research, it seemed as though most of the coaches were in the CHL, but a lot of the front offices were in the NCAA.
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2011
  21. bluesfan94

    bluesfan94 #PetroforNorris

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    You said that marginal players were for the NCAA, and the best went to the CHL. I don't consider Thomas, St. Louis, Kesler, or Toews marginal.

    I couldn't find statistics in that regard. I can try to go back through the past 5 or so drafts and find out. I also can't say I looked that hard. Oh and for what it's worth, I did post a list of all Americans who were in the CHL and on that list. If I remember correctly, it was Patrick Kane (USNTDP as well), Bobby Ryan, and Jack Campbell (USNTDP as well)

    "Currently, a little over 50 percent of the players in the NHL came from the Canadian Jr. A ranks. Approximately 25 percent came through the College ranks." http://www.letsplayhockey.com/957russo.html

    That's fantastic. Glad to hear it. Now let's get back to the modern day and talk about current prospects, as opposed to prospects that played years ago.
     
  22. Gump Hasek

    Gump Hasek Spleen Merchant

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    You want to focus on modern day here and now but name Tim Thomas as an example? An ancient journeyman most of his career; wasn't he like 30 before he made the bigs? Not exactly an advertisement for college development; he had to spend years toiling in other leagues after college in order to get his game up to par.

    Why did you choose just one year? Seems like a small and selective sample size.

    Why all of the direct focus upon the NCAA in your stats? Offer exact CHL comparatives to the numbers you post. I'll just take it as that you refuse a direct comparison to the CHL when possible.
     
  23. Gump Hasek

    Gump Hasek Spleen Merchant

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    Still waiting for the exact comparative CHL numbers. Thanks.
     
  24. bluesfan94

    bluesfan94 #PetroforNorris

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    He was 28. Fine then. You can drop Tim Thomas. Losing one player doesn't make your point, especially when he's replaced with someone like Ryan Miller. Thomas spent more time in the NCAA than any other league not named the NHL. I think it's valid, but we can drop him if that makes you happy.

    I chose one year because I was lazy. And because it's the most current. Sure, Gretzky, Lemieux , Yzerman, Hull, Orr, Jagr, Howe, Hasek, Roy, etc all didn't play in the NCAA. But the NCAA is loads better today than before.

    What exact stats would you like? I'm currently trying to figure out the number of Americans in the CHL like you asked. So far, I've finished the WHL, and out of 569 players, only 35 are from America. The only one I knew of having gone to a NCAA school is William Wrenn, who barely played at the University of Denver.
     
  25. Gump Hasek

    Gump Hasek Spleen Merchant

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    Why WHL only? How about OHL instead?

    How about instead you finally address what I initially posted. The increasing numbers of Americans choosing CHL over NCAA, especially elite players. That would seem to mark the CHL as the better route IMO. The increasing numbers of players dropping college after being drafted and moving instead to the CHL, many if not most at the suggestion of the NHL teams that drafted them. Why would NHL team suggest their players choose CHL? You won't like that answer.
     

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