It appears that some of us fans are frustrated with our team's performance this season. Well, as head Internet cheerleader for the Seawolves it's incumbent on me to say a few things. Let's take a look at reality shall we?
Our boys through 16 games last season had an overall record of 5-9-2. Through the first 16 games this season our boys are 5-9-2. As a fan were you mostly happy with the way that last season turned out? See um ... there's a shitload of hockey still to be played eh?
I seriously feel like there really isn't much more that I have to point out after the above fact. But I will.
Year in and year out the WCHA has an average of about 6 teams in the top 20 in the nation; sometimes more. Take a look at KRACH at the end of past seasons and you'll often find our boys ranked from the low to high 20s in the nation.
So um ... in general our boys are typically well above 30 or so other Division 1 programs in the country. Sure, we'd like to see them in the NCAA's. Getting there as a member of the WCHA is a tall order for a team that isn't a mega-school (Minnesota and Wisconsin) or a team that has multiple national championships (North Dakota, Denver). So far this season our boys have lost to the defending national champion and two of last year's NCAA participants for a total of 6 of the 9 losses.
Let's pretend something together shall we? You are an elite hockey player ... where you going to school first? Um ... teams with national championships and loads of history and tradition finishing near the top of the league contact you. When a school in Alaska calls what can they offer you to win a recruiting battle? Not much. So you see ... um ... those history rich and traditonal winning programs have an advantage don't they?
With that in mind when you go to the Sully or turn on a TV to watch our boys you probably shouldn't expect them to win every game. Hell, even some of those traditonal winning programs don't get to the NCAA's every year. Um ... remember what happened to Minnesota last year? Ok then. What I'm saying here is that it's important for us Seawolves fans to have reasonable expectations. Home ice as a goal for the season is a tall order. But it's not unreasonable to hope for that. It's obviously still a possibility.
Which leads me to the nattering naybobs of negativity (Spiro Agnew said that first). There are folks who call themselves fans who pop up to piss on certain aspects of the program anytime they can. I see some of that happening right now. For example, if you read Doyle Woody and look at the comments section you'll see this fucking retard there called "richardscommonsense" who shits on the program pretty much every time the Seawolves lose.
Here on this blog we get to see some of those as well. On here I take care of them generally by correcting their stupidity. Someone ought to go over there and do the same. I used to do that but seriously folks ... how much do you expect us here to do? We provide pictures, post-game interviews and whatever the hell I decide to write. It isn't required for you to attach your real name over at ADN to comment. So how about it? I challenge someone to step up and chase that turd off the Seawolves stories on that website.
Lastly ... I've said this before and I'll say it again at some point I'm sure. This isn't professional sports. Our boys are out there giving their best for a partial scholarship to a school who's degree doesn't exactly turn heads ... the University of Alaska Anchorage ain't Harvard folks. Dig me? I'd bet that there are few (if any) Seawolves getting all their schooling paid. 18 schollies between 28 players makes that a reality. They deserve respect for that. Pretty much all college athletes do no matter where they are going to school.
So does that mean you aren't supposed to want them to win? Hells no. I want our boys to win. But I consider my primary responsibility as a fan to support my boys. Winning is a bonus. Seeing them give it their best is the most important thing. They are young amateur athletes folks. Keep that in mind eh?
I hope nobody minded me saying "our boys" over and over here. But that's who they are to me. Beginning with the 2013-14 season the Seawolves will be in a conference that is much more suitable for the program than the WCHA and they'll win more games and finish higher in the standings than they typically do now. Will that make that future team somehow better than this year's (or any past year) team? Nope. Go to the games and enjoy the sport. Hope for a win but have some perspective for the realities of the situation eh?
I know someone is likely to come here and say something about "excuses". Don't. These words above aren't ... they're reality. I'll have a preview of the upcoming games against CC later in the week and whatever else occurs to me to write.