Early Season, Big Series: No. 1 Michigan vs. No. 16 WMU
It's more than just bragging rights that Western Michigan and Michigan will be scrapping over this weekend; for WMU, it's about showing voters that they are worthy of their current ranking, and with some more victories, a lot higher than No. 16. For Michigan, they're the big dog. But with that lofty ranking comes the knowledge, everyone is gunning for you.
Here's what set for this weekend:
From mgoblue.com: "The newly No. 1-ranked University of Michigan ice hockey team (4-0-0) faces No. 17 Western Michigan (2-0-0) in a home-and-home series this Friday and Saturday (Oct. 22-23). The Wolverines will host the Broncos on Friday (Oct. 22) at 7:30 p.m. at Yost Ice Arena, then will head to Kalamazoo for a 7:05 p.m. puck drop at Lawson Arena on Saturday (Oct. 23).
No TV, but streaming:
Friday's contest will be streamed live on B1G+, while Saturday's matchup will be streamed live on NCHC.tv.
They're not in the same conference anymore, but the rivalry between Michigan and WMU goes back many years when they both played in the CCHA. Michigan bolted when the Big Ten decided to create a hockey league. Western, at the same time, signed up as a charter member of the newly created NCHC, which has turned into one of the toughest conferences in college hockey, with at least one team in the national championship game every year since 2016 (both in 2017) and Minnesota-Duluth winning back to back Frozen Four titles in 2018 and 2019.
(Western Michigan Bronco Athletics via YouTube)
What to expect:
Western beat Ohio State, but it was an exhibition series. Michigan beat Minnesota-Duluth, which is impressive. Enough talk, play the game.