NCAA Hockey Team Falls Apart After Players Leave In Mass Exodus

Graham Montgomery
April 5, 2024  (7:20 PM)

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Photo credit: NCAA

The Northern Michigan University Wildcats are coming off a tough season. The team went 12-16-6 this year but now they face bigger problems as more than half the team will not be returning.

With the NCAA season wrapping up, most teams are reflecting on the season and preparing for next year. The Frozen Four have been set with Boston College, Boston University, Denver University, and Michigan set to play for the NCAA title. For everyone else, they have officially entered the offseason. This means that players are graduating, transferring, or going pro. For example, the Toronto Maple Leafs signed Quinnipiac University forward Jacob Quillan earlier this month. For one school in particular, this offseason has been exceptionally difficult. That would be Northern Michigan University. The team has nine players graduating and 13 currently in the transfer portal, meaning there are very few returning players for next season.
Mass exodus ongoing at NMU with 13 players and counting in the portal. It's completely unprecedented to see a team essentially dissolve. I'm trying to imagine the impact. Hard to wrap your head around really.

The program does have eight freshman committed to joining the team next season, including a couple of NHL draft picks. However, that would leave the team with just 17 players left to fill a 23-man roster.
Locking in on NMU hockey for the time being to examine the #CCHA team that has clearly been the most affected by the transfer portal. Here's what we know. With 13 players in the portal (blue) and nine players graduating (yellow), the Wildcats have nine returning players on their roster.

NMU head coach Grant Potulny adressed the turnover, stating that there is a good reason for it.
"They're trying to find a better situation for themselves where they can get a fresh start, and that's what this was created for. And there's a couple surprises. I think in today's era, when there's multiple first-rounders that are in the portal, those guys are surprises, too. It's not just affecting us. It's affecting Wisconsin. It's affecting UConn. It's affecting lots of programs, so surprises are going to be a part of it."

That being said, the school is still going to have a tough time finding replacements to fill in the roster. Perhaps they will have to resort to a couple of walk-ons during training camp next season.
Source: MarkerZone News
Over a dozen NCAA players ditch their team after horrible year
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NCAA Hockey Team Falls Apart After Players Leave In Mass Exodus

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