Photo: Notre Dame defenseman and Chicago Blackhawks prospect Stephen Johns will cap off his college career with his most productive offensive season for the Fighting Irish (courtesy of Zumapress/Icon SMI)
This season, the NCAA features an array of outstanding NHL-drafted defensemen and many of them, particularly underclassmen, have been left off this year’s list. The ten defensemen ranked here are all having excellent seasons with their respective teams and have made tremendous strides in their development.
Photo: St. Lawrence University defenseman and 2014 prospect Gavin Bayreuther was passed over in the 2012 and 2013 NHL Drafts but could have his name called at this year’s draft in Philadelphia, PA (courtesy of Tara Freeman/SLU)
The NCAA narrative begins early for most players planning to play collegiate hockey. By Grade 10 the player is being actively recruited and generally takes the next year or two to choose the school they feel will be best suited to their needs. The top recruits – the ones with NHL interest – are typically selected in the NHL Draft prior to even suiting up for their school of choice.
Photo: The Boston College Eagles strike the traditional champions’ pose after posting a 4-1 win over Northeastern to take the 62nd annual Beanpot Championship (courtesy of Richard T Gagnon/Getty Images)
Boston College senior captain Patrick Brown only has 15 career collegiate goals, but when the Eagles needed a boost he had the magic touch, lifting the Eagles over Northeastern, 4-1, in the 62nd annual Beanpot Championship at TD Garden in Boston, MA.
Photo: University of Michigan goaltender and 2014 prospect Zach Nagelvoort has made the most of the starting opportunity provided as the result of an injury to sophomore Steve Racine (courtesy of Dennis Pajot/Getty Images)
2014 is shaping up to be a good draft year for current collegians. There are a number of excellent players, particularly on defense, that could be selected at this year’s NHL Draft. Hockey’s Future takes a closer look at five of those draft prospects from the NCAA, all of whom appear on Central Scouting’s midterm rankings. Unless otherwise noted, all stats are current as of January 31st.
Photo: Goaltender Eric Comrie is the Hockey’s Future Prospect of the Month for January after posting an 8-2-0-1 record and 1.35 goals against average. Comrie was selected in the second round of the 2013 NHL Draft by the Winnipeg Jets. (courtesy of Marissa Baecker/Getty Images)
Tri-City Americans goaltender and Winnipeg Jets prospect Eric Comrie is the Hockey's Future Prospect of the Month for January. Comrie is coming off a dominant month of hockey in January, where he went 8-2-0-1 in 11 appearances while allowing only 15 goals.