Ladies and gentlemen, college hockey is BACK. After a long, boring, hockey-less summer, our Pioneers are about to hit the ice in Colorado Springs to get the best season in sports going. Magness Arena is about to get rocking again and the NCHC is poised to have another dominating season after putting 6 teams in the NCAA tournament last year.
As exciting as it is that DU is about to show its fans what is has in store to follow up its impressive 2014-15 campaign that ended with a loss in the second round of the NCAA tournament to eventual National Champion, Providence, there are definitely some specific things to watch for this year.
One of the few missing elements of current DU athletics is a 'voice of DU'.
Of course, we love our hockey radio team. Announcer Jay Stickney with his sardonic wit, great play-by-play calls, and obvious Pioneer bias. And crusty veteran color man Norm Jones is a true classic with great experience and understanding of Pioneer history. Mark Rycroft is an unpolished radio voice but a hockey expert that you would want to sit next to at a bar and talk hockey - credible and perfect for the role. No changes needed to this broadcast team.
Raj Sharon is the DU radio play-by-play basketball voice on Mile High Sports and Pioneer Vision. He is young and in the process of establishing his role as the voice of DU basketball - but it is still early. DU basketball play-by-play is clearly a contracted role for Sharon and he does not have a broadcast team to provide support, like hockey. Outside his role doing play-by-play for Pioneer basketball, Raj has additional duties covering the Nuggets and NBA as a reporter and works for ESPN Radio in Denver.
The 4-3 overtime loss was the 'Pioneer Way" on Friday night.
The (0-10) Pioneers faced the North Dakota State Bison. The Bison have the Summit league's leading scorer, Lauren Miller, and two of the top five assist leaders. You knew going into the game the Bison were going to score goals. The Pioneers with no wins (0-10) and only two goals in their past nine games were going to have a long night if they could not score goals. Miller got a hat trick on the night for the Bison but the Pioneers never quit, made the most of their chances, and took it to overtime where Miller finally ended the game in the 108th minute.
Colorado Springs - On Friday night, the Pios traveled to Colorado Springs to take on the Air Force Falcons of the Atlantic Hockey Association and came away with a disappointing 5-4 loss in overtime.
The Pioneers started slow in the first period and entered the locker room for the first time on the night with a 2-1 deficit. However, in the second period, Denver looked like the much better team for the first time all evening. While they only scored two goals and entered the locker room for the second intermission tied at 3, the Pios held the momentum going into the third period.
We hit a milestone. Well, we only did about 150 of 'em but DU's LetsGoDU founder & super-fan Damien Goddard created the other 5,850 posts! This gives us a moment to pose the question - How could one guy do so much?
Because he saw a need to jump-start the DU spirit...from Houston, nonetheless!
Thanks DG from all the Pioneer faithful!
As North Dakota moves toward an election to select a new name for their athletic teams, LetsGoDU has received an exclusive 'sneak peak' of the graphics that will support the new team names. Over the next five days, we will release the graphics for each of the five proposed names. Today is the final day.
Note to readers: This concludes our gripping UND nickname series.
A source provided LetsGoDU with a photo (above) taken today which allows us to speculate about the championship banners going up in Magness Arena. O.K...so there are lot more important things to worry about these days but this is a good issue to ponder.
There are going to be two new banners: The Directors Cup banner and the 2015 Lacrosse National Championship banner. Both are going to be presented Friday, October 16th during homecoming weekend against Michigan State.
The photo shows that the ski team banners have been taken down and there looks to be a new bracket for a new flag - likely the lacrosse banner at the south end of the arena. The ski team banners are likely to remain where they are on the north end. They are probably at the dry cleaners or the grommets had to be replaced due to wear from being raised and lowered 22 times!
In the future, all National Championships banners will continue to hang in Magness. The athletic department is looking at ways to recognize conference championships and national championships at each sport's respective venue as well. Details are still in the works but LetsGoDU will provide them as we get them.
Many LetsGoDU readers live outside Denver or have not visited the south end of campus recently. The picture above is the Joseph Korbel School of International Studies off Iliff Avenue. Construction workers recently installed a 23,000 pound spire atop the building. This will likely make it the highest structure on campus.They are currently in the process of adding blue tiles to match the adjoining Sie Complex addition.
Josef Korbel School Article
The Air Force freshman have already been immersed in the cadet culture by now. Every new cadet begins with Basic Cadet Training (BCT), more familiarly called “beast.” This 37-day training program run by upper class cadets is said to be very physically, emotionally and mentally challenging for all, regardless of background.
Don't just take our word for it. Follow the link below to Yelp reviews and see for yourself. (With the exception of Hanna I., Page T., & Dominique. They don't need a new bar - they need a big hug!!!)
This is our final contest mention of The Crimson & Gold Tavern. Congratulations!!!
We could go the traditional hockey route:
This looks nice!
Access the podcast through the Crimson & Gold tab (above). Or, on some mobile devices, follow this link.
Bill Tierney was interviewed on KOA Denver this afternoon by Dave Logan and Susie Wargin. Two great pieces of news for Pioneer fans surfaced during the interview. First, Bill Tierney indicated that his 7-year deal was structured to keep Matt Brown by his side. This stops the speculation that he would become a coaching target with the Tierney extension. Second, when asked about the fan experience at Peter Barton by Susie Wargin, Tierney made a broad reference to potential stadium expansion to accommodate lacrosse fans. While no detail was provided, there must be some on-going discussions at the University on how to manage the current limited stadium capacity at Peter Barton.
Listen to the interview right here!!!
It's a great interview and well worth a listen.
- What does he think about this year's team?
- What does the goalie situation look like?
- Get his view on Arizona State as a potential candidate for the NCHC
Thanks to Coach Montgomery and best of luck this season!
Link below, too.
Crimson & Gold
Link below, too.
Crimson & Gold