Ten days ago in Philadelphia, Union became the 20th program to win an NCAA Division I men’s college hockey championship. Since 1948, teams have competed for the coveted trophy, and the Dutchmen will raise a banner celebrating this past season that will hang forever.
I thought it would be interesting to take a look at all twenty teams who have made it to the mountaintop. Today, we’re discussing programs ranked #10 through #6. Follow the links to have a look at #20 through #16 and #15 through #11.
#10 Cornell Big Red
National Championships: 2 (1967, 1970)
Frozen Four Appearances: 8 (most recent, 2003)
NCAA Tournament Appearances: 19 (most recent, 2012)
Conference Playoff Titles: 12 (most recent, 2010)
Regular Season Conference Titles: 8 (most recent, 2005)
Hobey Baker Award Winners: None
Hobey Baker Award Finalists: Joe Nieuwendyk (1987), Doug Murray (2002), Dave LeNeveu (2003), David McKee (2005), Ben Scrivens (2010)
Other notable former players: Byron Bitz, Brad Chartrand, Sean Collins, Ken Dryden, Darren Eliot, Colin Greening, Brian Hayward, Kent Manderville, Brian McCutcheon, Matt Moulson, Douglas Murray, Riley Nash, Ryan O’Byrne, Jean-Marc Pelletier
Cornell was a Division I independent until the 1961-62 season, when the Big Red joined the ECAC. From 1966-73, Ned Harkness and Dick Bertrand combined to claim five regular season titles, five playoff titles, six tournament appearances, six Frozen Fours, two national titles, and two other runner-up finishes. Since that time, Cornell has never gone more than five seasons without appearing in the NCAAs. The only “lean years” for this program were during the Brian McCutcheon era (1987-1995), when the Lynah faithful were treated to just a single appearance in the NCAA tournament. Current head coach Mike Schafer has returned the Big Red to prominence in his 19 seasons behind the bench, and Cornell shows no signs of slowing down.
#9 Maine Black Bears
National Championships: 2 (1993, 1999)
Frozen Four Appearances: 11 (last, 2007)
NCAA Tournament Appearances: 18 (last, 2012)
Conference Playoff Titles: 5 (last, 2004)
Regular Season Conference Titles: 4 (last, 1995)
Hobey Baker Award Winners: LW Scott Pellerin (1992), LW Paul Kariya (1993)
Hobey Baker Award Finalists: Mike Golden (1988), David Capuano (1988, 1989), Jean-Yves Roy (1991, 1992), Jim Montgomery (1993), Chris Imes (1995), Steve Kariya (1999), Greg Moore (2006), Gustav Myquist (2010, 2011), Spencer Abbott (2012)
Other notable former players: Shawn Anderson, Bob Beers, Ben Bishop, Keith Carney, Brett Clark, Bob Corkum, Niko Dimitrakos, Mike Dunham, Chris Ferraro, Peter Ferraro, Brian Flynn, Ben Guite, Jim Howard, Doug Janik, Mike Lundin, Dustin Penner, Ted Purcell, Garth Snow, Eric Weinrich
Maine has competed at the Division I level since the 1977-78 season and joined Hockey East in 1984. Two stretches stick out with the Black Bears. From 1986-1995, Maine won seven combined regular season and playoff titles, went to the NCAAs eight times, made five Frozen Fours, and claimed their first national title. Then, from 1998-2007, the pride of Orono, Maine won two playoff titles and advanced to nine consecutive national tournaments, appearing in six Frozen Fours with a national championship in 1999 and two 2nd place finishes (2002, 2004). It’s been tougher sledding lately, with just one tournament appearance in the past seven seasons, but there’s plenty to be excited about with this program.
#8 Michigan State Spartans
National Championships: 3 (1966, 1986, 2007)
Frozen Four Appearances: 9 (most recent, 2007)
NCAA Tournament Appearances: 27 (most recent, 2012)
Conference Playoff Titles: 11 (most recent, 2006)
Regular Season Conference Titles: 8 (most recent, 2001)
Hobey Baker Award Winners: C Kip Miller (1990), G Ryan Miller (2001)
Hobey Baker Award Finalists: Ron Scott (1982, 1983), Craig Simpson (1985), Kelly Miller (1985), Mike Donnelly (1986), Bobby Reynolds (1989), Kip Miller (1989), Bryan Smolinski (1993), Anson Carter (1995), Chad Alban (1998), Mike York (1998, 1999), Shawn Horcoff (2000), Ryan Miller (2002), John-Michael Liles (2003), Jim Slater (2004), Jeff Lerg (2008), Torey Krug (2012)
Other notable former players: Justin Abdelkader, Norm Barnes, David Booth, Rod Brind’Amour, Jeff Brubaker, Danton Cole, Jim Cummins, Bob Essensa, Brian Glennie, Derek Grant, Steve Guolla, Adam Hall, Andre Hutchinson, Duncan Keith, Tim Kennedy, Ken Leiter, Chris Luongo, Drew Miller, Kevin Miller, Joe Murphy, Rem Murray, Jeff Petry, Doug Roberts, Corey Tropp, Mike Weaver, Neil Wilkinson, Jason Woolley
Michigan State suffered through some pretty lean years in the WCHA. From 1959-1981, the Spartans made the NCAA tournament only twice (1965-66 and 1966-67), but won a national title in 1966. Over the past 33 seasons, MSU has made the tournament 24 times, with six Frozen Four appearances and two more national championships. It’s been a tough go over the past six years, with just two winning seasons and one NCAA tourney appearance, but in the six team Big Ten Conference, Sparty will be back.
#7 Wisconsin Badgers
National Championships: 6 (1973, 1977, 1981, 1983, 1990, 2006)
Frozen Four Appearances: 9 (most recent, 2010)
NCAA Tournament Appearances: 24 (most recent, 2013)
Conference Playoff Titles: 9 (most recent, 2013)
Regular Season Conference Titles: 3 (most recent, 2000)
Hobey Baker Award Winners: C Blake Geoffrion (2010)
Hobey Baker Award Finalists: John Newberry (1982), Tony Granato (1987), Paul Ranheim (1988), Duane Derksen (1992), Steve Reinprecht (2000), Dany Heatley (2001), Brian Elliot (2006), Jamie McBain (2009), Brendan Smith (2010), Justin Schultz (2011, 2012), Joel Rumpel (2014)
Other notable former players: Mike Blaisdell, Rene Bourque, Adam Burish, Jim Carey, Chris Chelios, Jake Dowell, Davis Drewiske, Bruce Driver, Mike Eaves, Brian Engblom, Patrick Flatley, Jake Gardiner, Tom Gilbert, Sean Hill, Mark Johnson, Curtis Joseph, David Maley, Ryan McDonagh, Scott Mellanby, Brian Mullen, Mark Osiecki, Joe Pavelski, Brian Rafalski, Barry Richter, Mike Richter, Jack Skille, Paul Stanton, Derek Stepan, Gary Suter, Ryan Suter, Dean Talafous, Dave Tanabe, Kyle Turris, Brad Winchester
Wisconsin played as a Division I independent until the 1969-70 season, at which point the Badgers were admitted into the WCHA. Head coaches Bob Johnson and Jeff Sauer kept UW competing at a high level throughout the 70s, 80s, and 90s. Current head coach Mike Eaves has continued that tradition, adding a sixth title to the trophy case in 2006. Since their inaugural season in the WCHA, Bucky has made the NCAA tournament in 25 of 45 seasons overall, with 34 years of twenty victories or more.
#6 Denver Pioneers
National Championships: 7 (1958, 1960, 1961, 1968, 1969, 2004, 2005)
Frozen Four Appearances: 14 (most recent, 2005)
NCAA Tournament Appearances: 24 (most recent, 2013)
Conference Playoff Titles: 7 (most recent, 2008)
Regular Season Conference Titles: 11 (most recent, 2010)
Hobey Baker Award Winners: D Matt Carle (2006)
Hobey Baker Award Finalists: Ed Beers (1982), Dallas Gaume (1986), Dave Shields (1990), Wade Dubielwicz (2002), Rhett Rakhshani (2010), Marc Cheverie (2010)
Other notable former players: Bruce Affleck, Glenn Anderson, Tyler Bozak, Chris Butler, Mike Christie, Kevin Dineen, Marshall Johnston, Cliff Koroll, Antti Laaksonen, Pete LoPresti, Keith Magnuson, Tom Martin, Peter McNab, Craig Patrick, Matt Pettinger, Rich Preston, Craig Redmond, Mark Rycroft, Drew Shore, Paul Stastny, Vic Venasky, Jason Zucker
The Denver Pioneers have a similar resume to the Michigan Wolverines, with five titles before 1970 but only one NCAA postseason appearance between 1973 and 1995 Head coach George Gwozdecky took the reins beginning with the 1994-95 campaign and guided the Pios to 12 tournament appearances (and two national championships) in his 19 seasons behind the bench, but he’s since been replaced by Jim Montgomery. I am confident that DU can compete for both regular season and postseason hardware going forward.
Follow this link for a look at the top five teams on the all-time champions list. And check back later this month for a look at the five teams most likely to break through and win their first national title.
A special thank you goes out to SiouxSports.com user “franchise” for all of the information about Hobey Baker finalists for this article.
As always, thank you for reading. I encourage you to leave your comments below and follow me on Twitter (@DBergerHockey) for more information and analysis.