2008-09: Riley Sheahan played for his hometown St. Catharine's of the Greater Ontario Junior Hockey League (Golden Horseshoe Division). He scored 27 goals and 46 assists in 40 games, and was the leading scorer on the team for the second consecutive season.
2009-10: Sheahan skated in 37 games as a freshman for Notre Dame. He scored 6 goals and added 11 assists and was minus-10 with 22 penalty minutes; playing in all situations. The Fighting Irish finished ninth in the twelve-team CCHA and were swept by Ohio State in the first round of the conference tournament. Ranked 22nd amongst North American prospects in Central Scouting's final rankings, Sheahan was selected by Detroit in the first round (21st overall) of the 2010 NHL Draft.
2010-11: Sheahan struggled a bit offensively but saw significant ice-time in a checking role for Notre Dame in his sophomore season. He scored 5 goals with 17 assists and was minus-six with 28 penalty minutes. Sheahan skated in all 40 games for a Fighting Irish team that was one of the big turnaround stories in college hockey. The Fighting Irish finished second in the CCHA regular season and after back-to-back losses in the CCHA semifinals and third place game, rebounded to reach the Frozen Four semifinals against eventual national champion Minnesota-Duluth. Sheahan nearly made Canada’s WJC squad, being one of the very last cuts.
2011-12: Sheahan made his NHL debut, skating in nine shifts in the Red Wings' April 7 game against Chicago after signing a three-year entry-level contract. Prior to his call up. Sheahan made his pro hockey debut with the Red Wings' AHL affiliate Grand Rapids after completing his junior season at Notre Dame. Sheahan was scoreless with 4 penalty minutes in his only NHL game. He was with the Red Wings during their playoff series with Nashville but did not see any action. In seven games with the Griffins he scored 1 goal with 1 assist and was minus-two. Sheahan was the fourth-leading scorer for the Fighting Irish in what would be his final college hockey season – scoring 9 goals with 16 assists in 37 games. He was an even plus/minus with 25 penalty minutes and scored 5 of his 9 goals on the Fighting Irish power play. After starting off 10-2-3, Notre Dame struggled to stay above .500 – finishing eighth in the CCHA and losing to Michigan in the CCHA quarterfinals to end the season.
Sheahan has all the skills necessary to be a power forward type player. He possesses excellent shooting and playmaking ability. His large frame allows him to hold onto the puck for extended periods of time. Is an all-around excellent prospect, showing himself to be more than capable of playing defensive hockey as well.
Projects to be a second or third line center in the NHL. Will compete for a roster spot with the Red Wings in training camp, but will likely end up playing his first full AHL season in 2012-13.