Tom Fritsche is the younger brother of current Columbus Blue Jackets forward Dan Fritsche. The younger Fritsche enjoyed a sensational season with Ohio State that culminated in selections to the CCHA All-Rookie and Super Six All-Tournament teams well as being named Rookie of the Year and to the All-Rookie Team by Inside College Hockey. Fritsche was also the recipient of Ohio State’s George Burke Award, which is presented to the team’s top freshman. He led the Buckeyes in points (45), assists (34) and plus/minus (+21). His 45 points (11 goals, 34 assists) tied him for first in the nation among rookies. His 34 assists led all the nation’s rookies and tied for fifth overall. In addition, his 34 assists ranks third all-time on the Buckeyes team among freshmen.
Read Hockey’s Future’s December 2005 interview with Fritsche here.
2006-07: A junior at Ohio State University (CCHA), the forward tallied five goals and 13 points through 19 games. An illness knocked him out for much of the season but he was able to come back and ended up being awarded with All-Tournament honors at the Ohio Hockey Classic and won the CCHA’s Terry Flanagan Memorial Award.
2007-08: This marked Fritsche’s senior season with Ohio State University (CCHA). In a career-high 39 games, he tallied five goals and 19 points. He ended with 32 goals and 107 points in 137 games as a Buckeye. He went on to appear in 15 games with the Lake Erie Monsters (AHL), his first look at professional hockey; 15 games yielded five points (2g+3a).
2008-09: In his first full season with Lake Erie (AHL), Fritsche tallied 10 goals and as many assists in 48 games, but a concussion sidelined him for the remainder of the season.
Tom Fritsche is a creative playmaker. He has superb passing skills, is very smart and possesses great hockey sense. Fritsche is an outstanding skater with speed who moves very well through traffic. His play is very good around the net and along the boards. He also possesses a quick release. Fritsche is defensively responsible and transitions quite well. He can play in any type of situation. While Fritsche has shown that he can give and take hits, he could stand to be more involved in the physical side of the game.