Every week here at Eye on Hockey, we'll provide the CBSSports.com College Hockey Power 10, highlighting the top teams across college hockey. And with the NHL locked out, what else are you going to watch to get your hockey fix?
The unpredictability of October in college hockey has wreaked havoc on the early power rankings, creating a lot of movement, particularly this week. Minnesota lost last weekend to Michigan Tech, which got the Gophers supplanted from the top spot on the Power 10 for the first time this season by Boston College. The Eagles have rebounded nicely from an opening-night loss to Northeastern, going on a bit of a tear last weekend.
New Hampshire finds itself on the Power 10 for the first time this season after a convincing 3-0-0 start in which the Wildcats have outscored opponents, 13-6. Denver also returns to the list after a one-week absence. Meanwhile, the youthful Miami RedHawks have opened the season unbeaten, climbing to No. 3 after going unranked in the preseason.
The coming weekend should be a great one in college hockey with conference play beginning in the CCHA. This will be the final season for the conference, so expect the competition to be intense as teams vie to be the last CCHA champion.
There's also plenty of quality games on TV and the web, most of which feature at least one Power 10 team.
This week on CBSSports.com ULive (all times ET):
Friday, Oct. 26
Boston University vs. UMass – 7:30 p.m.
Minnesota vs. U.S. National U18 Team (Exhibition) – 8 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 27
UMass vs. Boston University – 7 p.m.
This week's College Hockey TV Schedule (all times ET):
Friday, Oct. 26
Northeastern at New Hampshire – 7 p.m. (Fox College Sports Atlantic)
Alaska Anchorage at North Dakota – 8:30 p.m. (Fox College Sports Central)
Saturday, Oct. 27
Alaska Anchorage at North Dakota – 8 p.m. (Fox College Sports Central)
Sunday, Oct. 28
Canisius at Minnesota (Fox College Sports Pacific) – 2 p.m. (Fox College Sports Atlantic)
Women's Hockey: Minnesota at North Dakota – 3 p.m. (Fox College Sports Central)
CBSSports.com College Hockey Power 10
|1. Boston College (2-1-0) – Last Week: 2|
|It took about five periods for the Eagles to wake up and remember who they were, but when they did wake up, the impact was felt across the country. A four-goal third period against UMass helped the Eagles to a 5-4 win in OT. The next night, BC avenged its only loss by shutting out Northeastern, 3-0.|
|2. Minnesota (3-1-0) – Last Week: 1|
|A weekend split against a solid Michigan Tech team knocks the Gophers off for the first time. Minnesota probably wouldn't have been bumped from the top spot if they didn't get so thoroughly out-played in that Friday-night loss. The cracks in the armor showed, but one bad night isn't worth a big tumble.|
|3. Miami (3-0-1) – Last Week: 6|
|Too young. Too inexperienced. All freshman goalies. That was the rationale for not putting the RedHawks in the preseason Power 10. Whoops. This team has high-end offensive talent up front and should score a lot of goals this year. Those freshman goalies are pretty good, too.|
|4. North Dakota (1-1-0) – Last Week: 3|
|Though playing with just 16 skaters, due to suspensions and injuries, on Friday night, UND managed to get past Alaska Anchorage. The next night, with a few key players back, the lights went out on the offense as North Dakota managed just one goal against the University of Alaska. Despite the tough situation, that can't happen for a team with this much talent.|
|5. Cornell (0-0-0) – Last Week: 4|
|We'll finally get to see the Big Red this weekend as it opens the season with a tough nonconference series at home against Colorado College. There are a lot of really nice pieces on Cornell's roster, but the X factor is goaltender Andy Iles. Cornell goes as he goes this season.|
|6. Denver (2-0-0) – Last Week: NR|
|Dropped off the last Power 10 only because they got bumped by teams that had actually played, Denver had a very convincing opening weekend. With wins over UMass-Lowell and Air Force, the Pioneers looked strong offensively scoring 10 goals over the weekend, while allowing just three.|
|7. Michigan (2-1-0) – Last Week: 7|
|The Wolverines offense came alive for the second straight game with a convincing 6-3 win over Bentley. Michigan now has 13 goals in its last two games, but there is still concern about goaltending. The toughest test for the Wolverines to date comes this weekend with a series against Miami.|
|8. New Hampshire (3-0-0) – Last Week: NR|
|After a sub-.500 season last year, it looks like things are returning to normal at UNH. Head coach Dick Umile got his 500th win on the first night of the season and the Wildcats are rolling. Sophomore goalie Casey DeSmith has been outstanding with a .920 save percentage in three starts.|
|9. Union (2-1-0) – Last Week: 8|
|The Dutchmen were idle over the weekend and no other teams made a convincing push to knock these guys out of the Power 10. A pair of should-win nonconference games this weekend could help Union start the climb back up the charts.|
|10. Notre Dame (3-1-0) – Last Week: 5|
|A home split with Minnesota Duluth raised a few more concerns about the offensive consitency of this team. After scoring just once in the series opener, Notre Dame answered back the next night with a four-goal outburst as goalie Steven Summerhays regained his form from opening weekend.|
Dropped Out: Boston University (1-1-0), Western Michigan (3-1-0)
On the Cusp: Western Michigan (3-1-0), Minnesota Duluth (2-2-0), Northern Michigan (3-1-0), Boston University (1-1-0), Northeastern (3-1-0).