With hockey season knocking on the door, it is time that we start our preview season here on the blog. I will begin my Hockey East previews sometime next week but for now, I thought it would be good to look at the incoming freshman. Next years freshman class will not be your prototypical BC freshman class as some guys will be expected to fill some big shoes in a very short amount of time..something that is never easy for freshman playing at a school like BC (Unless your Johnny G or Gionta). The biggest holes that will need to be filled will be on defense as the team loses Brian Dumoulin, Tommy Cross, and Edwin Shea. Now, I don't think it's fair to expect a guy like Mike Matheson to come in here and be the next Brian Dumoulin or Peter Harrold because thats a real high bar. However, I do think that it is fair to expect guys will come in and become adjusted to the speed of the college game as the season goes on. Let's take a look at the incoming defenseman.
Mike Matheson- The 6'1 defenseman out of Point-Clare, Quebec, is one of the more highly touted defensive recruits in recent memory as he was drafted in the first round of the NHL Draft by the Florida Panthers. While playing for the Dubuque Fighting Saints last season, Matheson recorded eleven goals and 16 assist for the Saints which was tops for defenseman on the team. Matheson's strengths are that he is a highly skilled "offensive" defenseman with great speed and nifty puck moving ability in the offensive zone. I think Matheson could really help out on the power play with offensive skill and smart play making. One aspect of his game that must improve this season is his play in his own end. With a small frame at 6'1, Matheson must get stronger as the year goes on to get ready for the big, powerful, forwards that he will face this season.
Colin Sullivan- A former Yale commit, Sullivan is a 6'2 defenseman out of Milford, CT. Last season, Sullivan recorded 17 points for the Avon Old Farms school and was also named to the NESPAC all league team by his fellow coaches. Like Matheson, Sullivan is a strong skater with good balance and is also is good physical condtion according to reports. When he gets to The Heights and starts his career here at BC, he must get quickly adjusted to the speed of the forwards that he will face. It takes a while for every freshman to get adjusted to the speed of the college game but if Sullivan can do it quickly, he could be a good player during his time at BC.
Teddy Doherty- A 5'11 defenseman out of the Dubuque Saints and hockey power Shattuck St Marys (MN), Doherty is another guy that will probably start on opening night for the Eagles. Doherty recorded 16 points last season for the Fighting Saints but had nine of those points on the power play. I think that it will take Doherty a little bit longer to adjust to the college game but with more playing time and some coaching, he could turn out to be a solid defenseman. At 5'11, he is a little undersized so I would expect that he needs some polishing in his own end.
Travis Jeke- A 6'4 defenseman out of the Northwood School (NY), Jeke is a towering walk-on defenseman that may not start at the beginning of the season for the Eagles, but has a chance to crack the lineup as the year goes on. Jeke recorded 27 points (including 16 goals) for the Detroit Little Caesars two season before attending the Northwood School where he had 31 points for the Huskies. If he can improve in a few areas as the season goes on, I think he could play a few games for the Eagles this season.
I'll post the forwards later tonight.