- Partnering with the OHL: Guelph held a very well-attended game at a major junior rink, the Sleeman Centre, on Saturday and Greg Layson reports that they want to collaborate with the OHL's Storm
"Guelph assistant coach Jim Clancy told me the team is floating the idea of hockey double-headers with OUA schools which also have OHL teams in their city. For example, Queen's comes to Guelph the same night the Frontenacs do to play the Storm. The OUA game is played first, the OHL game second — or vice versa. If you're the OUA, it's something worth working on."All university leagues need to be trying to reach out to the casual fans who might only be there a couple times a season.
Getting the schedules lined up is not that hard. For instance, Regina hosted Alberta this weekend in Canada West hockey on the same night the Regina Pats played the Edmonton Oil Kings. In Ontario, Carleton and Queen's, and the OHL's Kingston Frontenacs and Ottawa 67's were each slated to play on the same night this week.
(Those latter two games were snowed out. That prompted some wiseacre on the Queen's student station, CFRC 101.9, to comment that the last-place Frontenacs and the Golden Gaels, the lowest-scoring team in the OUA, should have played each other to see if it was possible to have a game end 0-0 in a shutout. Of course, Queen's scored nine goals in a pair of wins this weekend and the Frontenacs upset John Tavares and the London Knights on a goofy goal on Friday.
- Realignment: The OUA, like the home ec teacher in Superbad, didn't invent odd numbers, but it has to figure out how to divide 19 teams when Nipissing, located in North Bay, begins play next season. Former York SID Mike Koreen, now sports editor at the Kingston Whig-Standard, noted realignment is on the table in a column on Saturday.
Honestly, a three-division alignment makes some sense. Geographically, Nipissing could slide into the Far East with the Ottawa and Quebec schools. A six- or seven-team Central Division could be carved out of the schools located close to Lake Ontario (Ontario Tech, Queen's, RMC, Ryerson, Toronto and York). Brock or Guelph can kind of go either way, meaning one of them would have the fun job of joining the loaded Far West division.
Using Canada West basketball's playoff format -- three divisions, a wild card, and hosting rotating between divisions -- might work for a Frozen Four.
Men's hockey: Realignment, collaboration with the OHL on front burner
A couple of irons are in the fire in OUA men's hockey.