Sept. 25, 2007
Detroit, Mich. - The Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA) opened the 2007-08 college hockey season with its annual Media Day at Detroit's Joe Louis Arena on Tuesday afternoon.
The conference announced its annual coaches and media preseason polls along with a preseason all-CCHA team. In the polls ranking the teams, the Irish were picked to finish third by both the league's coaches and the media that covers the conference on a regular basis. The Irish received 105 points from the coaches, including one first-place vote. That put Notre Dame eight points behind second-place Michigan State (113) and nine behind first-place Miami (114) in the coaches' poll. The Irish had a 13-point edge on fourth place Michigan.
In the media voting, Notre Dame recorded 656 points, including 13 first-place votes and picked for third behind first-place Michigan State (701 points, 25 first-place votes) and second-place Miami as the RedHawks had 667 points with 21 first-place votes. Michigan rounded out the top four in the media voting with 596 points, including four for first place.
The actual results of both polls:
CCHA Coaches Poll (1st) Points Media Poll (1st) Points 1. Miami (5) 114 1. Michigan State (25) 701 2. Michigan State (6) 113 2. Miami (21) 667 3. NOTRE DAME (1) 105 3. NOTRE DAME (13) 656 4. Michigan 92 4. Michigan (4) 596 5. Ohio State 77 5. Ohio State 414 6. Nebraska-Omaha 68 6. Nebraska-Omaha 412 7. Lake Superior 52 7. Western Michigan 352 8. Northern Michigan 48 8. Ferris State 279 9. Ferris State 44 9. Lake Superior State 270 10. Western Michigan 41 10. Northern Michigan 248 11. Alaska 25 11. Alaska 212 12. Bowling Green 13 12. Bowling Green 108
The CCHA coaches also selected preseason all-Conference teams for the `07-'08 campaign and three Notre Dame players were selected. Leading the way was sophomore defenseman Kyle Lawson (New Hudson, Mich.) who was named to the first team. A CCHA all-rookies selection as a freshman, Lawson received five first-team votes and a total of 37 points overall. He had four goals and 15 assists for 19 points and was +21 overall last season. Junior right wing Erik Condra (Livonia, Mich.) was joined on the second team by sophomore linemate, left wing Ryan Thang (Edina, Minn.). Condra had five first-team votes and a total of 39 points while Thang received no first-team votes but got 20 points overall. An honorable mention all-CCHA selection last season, Condra led the Irish in scoring last season and was sixth in the conference with 14 goals and 34 assists for 48 points. His +30 total led the CCHA. Thang, who was one of three Irish freshmen named to the CCHA all-rookie team, was second on the Irish in scoring (20g-21a-41 pts.) while leading the team with 10 power-play goals and six game winners. His 20 goals made him the fifth Notre Dame freshman to score 20 or more goals in a season and his 41 points tied him for eighth among Notre Dame freshmen all-time. Miami led the way with four players, followed by Notre Dame (3), Michigan State (2), Michigan (2), Alaska (1) and Ohio State (1). Michigan State goaltender Jeff Lerg and Miami forward Nathan Davis were the lone unanimous choices.
2007-08 CCHA Preseason First Team Pos. Player Yr. School First Points F Nathan Davis Sr. Miami 11 55 F Kevin Porter Sr. Michigan 8 49 F Ryan Jones Sr. Miami 7 47 D Alec Martinez Jr. Miami 7 45 D Kyle Lawson So. NOTRE DAME 5 41 D Jason DeSantis Jr. Ohio State 3 31 G Jeff Lerg Jr. Michigan State 11 55
2007-08 CCHA Preseason Second Team Pos. Player Yr. School First Points F Tim Kennedy Jr. Michigan State 5 43 F Erik Condra Jr. NOTRE DAME 5 39 F Ryan Thang So. NOTRE DAME 0 20 F Chad Kolarik Sr. Michigan 0 20 D Tyler Eckford Sr. Alaska 4 33 D Jason DeSantis Jr. Ohio State 3 31 G Jeff Zatkoff Jr. Miami 1 35
Honorable mention (next six point totals, regardless of position with first team votes in parentheses): Mitch Ganzak, Sr., Miami, D, (2) 20; Justin Abdelkader, Jr., Michigan State, F, 18; Mark Mitera, Jr., Michigan, D, 15; Bryan Lerg, Sr., Michigan State, 14; Riley Gill, So., Western Michigan, G, 10; Jeff LoVecchio, Jr. Western Michigan, F, 9; Eddie Del Grosso, Nebraska-Omaha, (1) 9; Juha Uotila, Jr., Nebraska-Omaha, D, (1), 9.