An update on UAH-to-Atlantic Hockey: There is no update.
June was the month in which we we’re expecting Atlantic Hockey to deliberate expansion and potentially inviting UAH into the conference. It is now July, and we still do not know when the final answer will come down.
UAH suspended the hockey program back in May because it couldn’t get an answer on conference affiliation in time.
Recent developments may have made the wait even longer. Atlantic Hockey member Robert Morris stunned college hockey on May 26 with the announcement that it was cutting it’s men’s and women’s programs. Efforts to save the programs are under way, but RMU administrators appear unwilling to listen. Now RMU players are have high-profile legal representation ready for a possible showdown with the university.
If the Colonials don’t come back, Atlantic Hockey will drop to 10 teams for this coming season. The league now has to scramble to put a schedule together, meaning it’s possible that the topic of UAH will be put on the backburner.
Outside of the possible extra delay, it’s unclear how the RMU situation affects UAH’s chances of getting into Atlantic Hockey. UAH is by no means a simple replacement for RMU. Atlantic is back to an even number, although adding UAH and Long Island, provided both check the boxes acceptable to the league, would put it at 12.
For now, we keep on the lookout for a decision. Meanwhile…
WCHA closes up shop: The men’s WCHA, after 70 seasons as a significant part of college hockey’s history, officially announced its dissolution on July 2.
The demise of the WCHA men’s league was expected after seven schools announced they were leaving the conference two years ago. The schools have formed the new CCHA, which begins play this fall.
UAH, which joined the WCHA in 2013, was “granted their request to depart the league earlier this summer,” according the news release. UAH submitted its intention to leave the league in the fall of 2019.
That left representatives from the remaining two schools, Alaska Anchorage and Alaska Fairbanks, to vote on dissolving the men’s WCHA. Fairbanks plans to play on as an independent, while Anchorage continues to raise funds in an attempt to resurrect its program.
The WCHA will continue on as a force in women’s college hockey.
Transfer update: Because NCAA hockey rosters are close to being finalized (if they aren’t already), movement from the transfer portal has slowed to a trickle with many UAH players still trying to find places to play for this season.
Matthew Jennings, a forward who was coming to UAH after three years at Ohio State, will go to St. Thomas instead.
Goaltender George McBey, who played one period for the Chargers this season as a freshman, will get a new start at Division III Milwaukee School of Engineering.
David Fessenden landed on a new team (New Hampshire) before UAH suspended the program for 2021-22. Tyrone Bronte announced he was transferring to Michigan Tech about a week after the program suspension.
Corbett to Quinnipiac: After one season as an assistant coach at Robert Morris, former UAH head coach Mike Corbett will join Rand Pecknold’s staff at Quinnipiac following the folding of RMU’s program. Corbett was the Chargers’ head coach from 2013-20.