2006-07: Corbin McPherson played in 44 games for the Cowichan Valley Capitals of the BCHL, where he scored four goals and 10 assists to go along with 63 penalty minutes. A year older than most other draft eligible prospects, McPherson was not ranked by the Central Scouting Service or International Scouting Service, but the New Jersey Devils obviously like what they saw in him, and drafted McPherson in the third round of the 2007 NHL Draft.
2007-08: McPherson returned to Cowichan Valley for the 2007-08 season and marginally improved on his overall numbers across the board from his previous campaign. In 55 games, he recorded three goals and 14 assists, to go along with 84 PIM's. He committed to Colgate for the 2008-09 season, and instantly became the highest NHL draft player in the school's history.
2008-09: McPherson made a strong impression in his freshman season at Colgate, as the physical imposing blueliner suited up in all 37 games for the Red Raiders, recording five assists, 50 PIM's and an even plus/minus rating. Even though he was only a freshman, he played major minutes and saw significant action in all situations.
2009-10: Corbin continued to improve upon his first season with Colgate, appearing in 35 games as one of its top blue liners. Strides were made in the offensive side of the game, scoring his first two goals of his college career, and six assists to go with it. The rugged defenseman also saw an improvement in his discipline with only 20 PIM.
2010-11: McPherson's junior season was a microcosm of that of his Colgate team – the Raiders struggled for much of the year and at one point were 3-22-2. In early February they turned things around; making a highly-unexpected run to the ECAC semifinals. McPherson played in 41 of 42 games for the Raiders and had 4 goals with 6 assists with 36 PMs. His -18 plus/minus was indicative of the Raiders' early season struggles. He had just one point during the Raiders' stretch run but showed flashes of the defensive player the Devils think he can be.
2011-12: McPherson made his pro hockey debut in March; playing nine games with the AHL's Albany Devils; signing an amateur tryout contract following his senior season at Colgate. He had 1 assist and was minus-four with 2 penalty minutes for Albany. Paired with junior Nathan Sinz for much of the season with the Red Raiders, he was a consistent defender for Colgate — finishing plus-seven with 28 penalty minutes. McPherson scored 3 of his 4 goals on the power play and added 6 assists. He was not tendered a contract by New Jersey in June, becoming an unrestricted free agent, and signed an AHL contract with the Albany Devils in August, 2012.
McPherson evolved into a more well-rounded defenseman over the course of his collegiate career, finishing it off with an effective senior season. A towering and imposing physical specimen, McPherson skates and moves around the ice well for a guy his size. He showed a willingness to jump into the play more and involve himself offensively each year at Colgate. His positioning in his own end improved tremendously and had no problem using his sizeable frame and reach to keep the opposition at bay. His enormous wingspan is a great asset and provides advantages defending that you just can’t teach.
The Devils took their time with McPherson, and while he is by no-means an elite prospect, he developed into a steady, sound defenseman while at Colgate. He’ll vie for a full-time job in the AHL with Albany this fall and with a little more time, could develop into a useful depth defenseman.