Thursday, September 1, 2011

WCHA markets

After a rather animated newsroom discussion about the future WCHA today, I decided to take a look at the size of the cities that will house league teams in 2013-14. Gone will be Minneapolis-St. Paul, Denver, Colorado Springs, Omaha, Madison, Grand Forks and Duluth. In will be Fairbanks, Marquette, Sault Ste. Marie and Big Rapids. Here are the populations of the new WCHA cities. Mankato will suddenly become the third-largest area in the league.

City                                     Population              Metro Area
Anchorage, Alaska              291,826                    374,553
St. Cloud                             65,842                      189,148
Mankato-North Mankato     52,703                      96,740
Fairbanks, Alaska                35,132                      51,926
Marquette, Mich.                 21,355                      67,077
Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.        16,542                      NA
Bemidji                                13,431                      NA
Big Rapids, Mich.               10,849                      NA
Houghton, Mich.                 7,010                        NA

If Western Michigan and Bowling Green decide to join the league, they will give the league its second- and sixth-biggest areas. WMU is in Kalamazoo, Mich., which has a population of 74,262 (326,589 metro area). Bowling Green, Ohio, has a population of 30,028 but is part of the Toledo metro area, which includes about 650,000 people.

Update: Here the Metro Area populations of the programs leaving the league:

Minneapolis-St. Paul   3.2 million
Denver                        2.5 million
Omaha                        885,000
Colorado Springs        645,000
Madison                      561,000
Duluth                         276,000
Grand Forks                98,000


Michael Napier said...

Huntsville would have the second highest population (180,105) and overall highest metro population (417,593). That is, of course, if the WCHA is interested...

blackswampblues said...

Bowling Green is part of metro Toledo (650,000).
Throughout this whole thing, amazing/shocking to find out how little pundits in North Dakota and Minnesota know about BGSU and the MAC.

FadeToBlackAndGold said...

You've slightly underestimated Houghton. To be completely accurate, it has to be cominbed with sister city Hancock and the cities of Calumet/Laurium a few minutes up the road. That brings the total to just under 15,000. Adding up the rest of the Keweenaw probably brings you to just under 20,000. Not huge, but about 2.5x as big a "market" as you posted.

Jeff said...

There are 100K people within 5 miles of Lake State. Sure, 85K of them are Canadians, but Lake State gets some press in their media and some of them come across the bridge to games.....

MSUMaverickFan said...

Here's my first take at possible forward line combos.


We will have considerable depth at forward this year. The big question mark is at the center position, with few returning centerman a regular winger will likely make the adjustment. Dorr has played there before, but I also think Hayes could make a good centerman. Another question mark is if Leitner can pick up where he left off 2 years ago, I'm giving him the benifit of the doubt. With this group, Jutting will have to fight his urge to mix and match constantly. Chemistry will be huge, and it's tough to achieve chemistry when your playing with new faces each week.

Todd said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Todd said...

As far as reaching out for size in the WCHA, you have to realize that he only used the Metropolitan Statistical Area data for the metro area. I mean, Mankato would be quite a bit bigger, too, if you add in places like New Ulm, Fairmont, Owatonna, Faribault, Waseca, and even some of Scott County. All these other places are within 45 minutes of Mankato. For the MSA, they only included areas near Mankato, North Mankato, and St. Peter. Plus, Mankato and St. Cloud are within an hour and a half of the heart of the Twin Cities. I think that is something UND and UMD miscalculated when they left the WCHA - the teams near the major market for most of the players in college hockey are not represented in their league.

BIGhkyfan said...

MSUMaverickFan is right on when he says, "Jutting will have to fight his urge to mix and match constantly. Chemistry will be huge, and it's tough to achieve chemistry when your playing with new faces each week."
The last several years, that has not been the case with the D pairings, other than the 3rd pairing being 50/50 throughout the season.

So, let me give a shot at the D pairings based on one strong D minded player and one offensive D man;

Nelson/Knoll Mixed in; Palmquist/Stern

What the coach will probably do;

Cooper/Heath Mixed in; Knoll/Stern

Should be an exciting season as the new blood will be hungry for ice.