University of Illinois Releases Hockey Feasibility Study



dayooper

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The University of Illinois sure looks like it's going to use their Big10 money on a D1 hockey program. They have one of the best club hockey programs and it looks like they are going to move up to D1.

From the article:

Based on interviews with, and feedback from, campus and community stakeholders and strong support from the Chicago Blackhawks and the NHL, the report indicates there is growing excitement among the statewide hockey community about the UI starting a Division I hockey program. The report states that with the expanding enthusiasm for ice hockey at all levels in the state of Illinois, the foundation appears to be in place for Illinois to develop a men's hockey program that will, in a relatively short timeframe, become financially viable and competitive on a conference and national level

and about the needed facility:

The study recommends development of a new facility on the location proposed in downtown Champaign. The DIA concurs with this recommendation and will begin focusing its planning efforts on the downtown location. The facility, which would have seating capacity of 5,000 – 6,000, could provide new competition space for hockey, volleyball, gymnastics and wrestling. The downtown location allows the University to partner with the City of Champaign and, with its easy accessibility to the many amenities and business establishments that downtown has to offer, should serve as a boon to the local economy.

Is it a done deal?:

At this time, the DIA is not prepared to make the ultimate decision about adding hockey as a varsity sport. This will happen only if the DIA can successfully fund the program and receive needed support from various campus and community stakeholders.

My Take:

Looks like if they can get funding (and I think they will) it is a go. Hockey is very important to the Big10 that sponsor hockey (and they are having a very good year; 5 out of the 7 teams are ranked 13 or above in the most recent pairwise). While adding Illinois hockey really doesn't do anything for me, it shows that there is a market in the midwest for more hockey. If it wasn't helping the BTN, then I highly doubt Illinois would be looking into the process.

I know this isn't realignment news, but it would have some CR implications. If Illinois were to move up, it would shut down the talk of North Dakota (a team I would love in the Big10) or ASU (a team I want to stay away from) joining as associate members. It also shows the commitment that the Big10 has towards it's hockey conference. If Illinois is willing to go to these lengths, then it's here to stay. I know that UConn is happy in Hockey East, but if they ever did join the Big10, then you all would be a welcome addition in hockey. Adding another Eastern school with you would just be the icing on the cake.
 
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The NHL is supposedly sponsoring these studies for five schools. When will we learn who else is looking into adding D1 hockey? Possibly Rutgers, Pitt, Syracuse, Rhode Island? More Pac-12 schools to join Arizona State?
 

dayooper

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The NHL is supposedly sponsoring these studies for five schools. When will we learn who else is looking into adding D1 hockey? Possibly Rutgers, Pitt, Syracuse, Rhode Island? More Pac-12 schools to join Arizona State?
Yeah, the NHL and the Chicago Blackhawks were the lead for UI. I know there was some rumbling about Rutgers a while back, but I would think their present monetary situation won’t allow that to happen until they get their full share of Big10 money. I don’t know how well hockey would be received in PAC country. One of the reasons UI is looking in to it is the support of youth hockey in Illinois. Not so sure in PAC land.
 

Dream Jobbed 2.0

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The NHL is supposedly sponsoring these studies for five schools. When will we learn who else is looking into adding D1 hockey? Possibly Rutgers, Pitt, Syracuse, Rhode Island? More Pac-12 schools to join Arizona State?
IMO it’s unbelievable that Cuse doesn’t have a D1 hockey team. Less so RU but still bad
 
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IMO it’s unbelievable that Cuse doesn’t have a D1 hockey team.
I don't believe that the University of Syracuse has a facility in which to play mens's D1 hockey. Syracuse also does not have men's baseball or wrestling.

IMO I would rather UConn ends up in the B10 then the ACC or another conference.
 

Dream Jobbed 2.0

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I don't believe that the University of Syracuse has a facility in which to play mens's D1 hockey. Syracuse also does not have men's baseball or wrestling.

IMO I would rather UConn ends up in the B10 then the ACC or another conference.
It’s still winter in Syracuse the whole college baseball season.
 

dayooper

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I don't believe that the University of Syracuse has a facility in which to play mens's D1 hockey. Syracuse also does not have men's baseball or wrestling.

IMO I would rather UConn ends up in the B10 then the ACC or another conference.
The ACC had the lowest payout for the fiscal year 2017 with $26 million per team ($15 million less than top dog SEC and $4.5 million less than 4th place PAC12). It gets worse this year as the Big10 will get over $50 million per team while the ACC will get a projected $28 million. Syracuse is bleeding money right now (it's one of the reasons they left the AAU, they couldn't keep supporting the research that is needed to keep in the AAU). Adding hockey would be a bigger drain on their funds. Give Rutgers a couple of years and they just might have a team.

BTW - I agree that the Big10 is the best spot for UConn.
 

whaler11

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It’s still winter in Syracuse the whole college baseball season.
It is in Storrs too. So weird angle.

Thanks to the NHL for sponsoring a study that makes it clear UConn to the Big Ten.

Thanks Gary Bettman!
 
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The ACC had the lowest payout for the fiscal year 2017 with $26 million per team ($15 million less than top dog SEC and $4.5 million less than 4th place PAC12). It gets worse this year as the Big10 will get over $50 million per team while the ACC will get a projected $28 million. Syracuse is bleeding money right now (it's one of the reasons they left the AAU, they couldn't keep supporting the research that is needed to keep in the AAU). Adding hockey would be a bigger drain on their funds. Give Rutgers a couple of years and they just might have a team.

BTW - I agree that the Big10 is the best spot for UConn.
I think UConn would jump at the chance for a $26 million dollar payout. If Syracuse if bleeding money, what about UConn? This comparison is silly. Just the thought of Rutgers or anyone for that matter getting $50 million a year, while a school like UConn is getting pennies is ridiculous. I don't believe UConn is going anywhere. Given the figures you just posted, there is no need for any conference to expand.
 
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The ACC had the lowest payout for the fiscal year 2017 with $26 million per team ($15 million less than top dog SEC and $4.5 million less than 4th place PAC12). It gets worse this year as the Big10 will get over $50 million per team while the ACC will get a projected $28 million. Syracuse is bleeding money right now (it's one of the reasons they left the AAU, they couldn't keep supporting the research that is needed to keep in the AAU). Adding hockey would be a bigger drain on their funds. Give Rutgers a couple of years and they just might have a team.

BTW - I agree that the Big10 is the best spot for UConn.
I have no facts to prove my opinion.... but I have always believed that Syracuse used its efforts to exclude UConn from the ACC because it hopes to assume its advertising slogan of being "New York's Team".

If UConn was in the ACC then UConn would again dominate the New York metropolitan area.
 
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Syracuse is too far away from NYC to lay any claim to "New York's Team". Maybe they could go with "New York's Upstate Team".

If Syracuse was in the B1G, the Orange would be ranked 4th GEOGRAPHICALLY from NYC. Rutgers, Maryland and Penn State are all three geographically closer to NYC than Syracuse.
 
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The NHL is supposedly sponsoring these studies for five schools. When will we learn who else is looking into adding D1 hockey? Possibly Rutgers, Pitt, Syracuse, Rhode Island? More Pac-12 schools to join Arizona State?
URI has a solid club team that plays in a 15 year old on campus arena the size and stature of what is found in Atlantic Hockey.
Some alumni want to dump football, which has had around 3 winning seasons in 30 years, and move up to D1 hockey.
 
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I have no facts to prove my opinion.... but I have always believed that Syracuse used its efforts to exclude UConn from the ACC because it hopes to assume its advertising slogan of being "New York's Team".

If UConn was in the ACC then UConn would again dominate the New York metropolitan area.
In reality, Syracuse is Rochester's Team
 

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