As the NCAA season progresses, I’m going to publish weekly rankings in conjunction with the USCHO poll. These rankings will be entirely statistics based with the explanation as to how those stats are developed here. As I prefer to do when compiling rankings, a team’s final ranking will be determined by a summation of their rankings in various statistical categories:
- Overall winning percentage (pct)
- Goal differential (+/-)
- Percentage of shots taken (S%) – (Editor’s Note – This is essentially the best imitator of Corsi %. I’m told that shot attempts (Shots on goal plus missed shots plus shots taken that get blocked) are recorded but that data is not available anywhere.)
- Percentage of shots taken relative to Opponents’ S% (Rel S%)
- Power play and penalty kill percentage
- S% versus teams with an S% of 50% or more
- Rel S% versus teams with an S% of 50 or more
- Shooting Percentage (Sht%)
- Save Percentage (Sv%)
Also I have taken to making all of my spreadsheets available for download here.
No schools got votes outside of the top ten meaning that the pollsters are pretty set on who they think are the best teams in the nation. I think Syracuse, St. Lawrence, Harvard, and BU can all play with the tail end of this group.
The PairWise Ranking is back and again, this mirrors the selection criteria for the NCAA tournament. As you can see Bemidji State and North Dakota are on the outside looking in thanks to strong play from the Huskies and Tigers. I don’t know about you but when a Husky and a Tiger match up against a Beaver and a Fighting Hawk, I’m taking the dog and cat.
Let’s break down the top eight:
1. Boston College
With the WCHA’s play so insular, I wonder if Boston College is just flat out better than Wisconsin.
The Badgers’ strength of schedule (9th) isn’t that far ahead of the Eagles (14th). The WCHA is drawing near to a future where it will hurt itself by not playing more out of conference games.
The Bobcats’ loss against Colgate last week raises some questions. Last year they faded hard down the stretch and with a tough series coming up against St. Lawrence and Clarkson, the potential is there for it to happen again.
The Gophers got Amanda Kessel and Brook Garzone back in the lineup. They looked last weekend like they’re not sure how to fit all their offensive talent together, though it could merely have been UND’s tendency to play Minnesota tough.
The Knights seem to be peaking at the right time thanks to a 9-1 shellacking of RPI. A sweep this weekend versus Princeton and Quinnipiac will have the Knights at most one point out of the ECAC’s top seed.
The Huskies fell apart in the Beanpot championship losing 7-0 to Boston College. BC is good, but the Huskies’ tendency to play scattered early continues to hurt them down the stretch.
The Tigers swept Cornell and Colgate in pretty convincing fashion, clinching a playoff spot in the process. A least one win and at least one Harvard loss this weekend will secure them home ice.
With their defeat of Quinnipiac the Raiders clinched their first ECAC playoff spot in since 2012-2013. They’re sitting in fourth right now with their sights on the final home ice spot.