Season 2 Episode 15 of the Chasing MacNaughton Podcast from Tech Hockey Guide; “Girthy Hot Dog” This week Tim Braun, Dustin Lindstrom, Rob Gilreath, and Matt Cavender were joined by Harrison Watt, the play by play voice of the Ferris State Bulldogs. This week, the topics discussed include:
- Ferris Game One/Huntsville Series Recap (4:10)
- Ferris State’s Season
- Bowling Green/Minnesota State Shenanigans
- Joe Shawhan Hour
- NCHC Playoffs
- Listener Questions
Before I get going here, I’d first like to than our patrons for being so patient with us this week. We ran into some unforeseen audio issues and were unable to get the pod out early for them. Thanks for understanding and we hope you like this week’s edition of the podcast!
I’d like to give a big shout out to Tim Braun for the work he’s done this week, especially in editing the audio. Because of some exporting issues, he had to pull audio from the zoom chat. I really did not envy his duties this week.
Alright, and with that out of the way, here’s how the discussion went:
If you’re as annoyed as I am with the Pat’s Foods ads right at the beginning of these highlights, if you skip to :25, you’re out of the woods and you can just watch the highlights. Admittedly it’s a cute ad for a local business, but I think I speak for most of us when I say I’d rather see it at the end of the video.
MTU @ FSU Tuesday, February 2, 2021
MTU @ UAH Friday, February 5, 2021
MTU @ UAH Saturday, February 6, 2021
To begin with the first game of our weird Tuesday-Tuesday series against the Ferris State Bulldogs, Ferris is a team that’s way better than just their record would indicate. t. They’ve given some tough teams a very hard time and have the offensive guns to put up goals. However, this season they always seem to run into one obstacle that they can’t overcome that seems to ultimately lead them to defeat. Last Tuesday, it was the failure to capitalize on a well-deserved Huskies 5 minute penalty kill, while also taking a penalty themselves during this time. At times it seemed like Ferris was poised to come back, but they seem to do a good job at shooting themselves in the foot. This game was no exception. As Harrison pointed out, “at this level, bad teams don’t score” and the Bulldogs have had no trouble putting the puck in the net. However, it’s their defensive immaturity that sees them struggle to keep the puck out of their own net. We all don’t think that Ferris gets out of this season without a win, at this point we’re just hoping it isn’t against Tech.
As far as Huntsville goes, I’m not sure what else to say other than the Huskies took care of business. There were some times where the team struggled to find their footing, but eventually Tech proved that they have the superior talent and came out of Huntsville more or less unscathed, despite the long road trip. This tweet from Brad Schlossman of the Grand Forks Herald really says it all about Friday’s performance.
Not sure if Alabama Huntsville thought Mark Sinclair was still playing for them, but the Chargers fired 0 shots on goal in the third period against their old goalie, who returned to Huntsville tonight for first time since transferring to MTU. UAH had 1 SOG in final 33 mins.— Brad Elliott Schlossman (@SchlossmanGF) February 6, 2021
On Saturday night, it was a similar story. Despite Huntsville getting the early goal to take the lead, Tech scored 3 goals in the third period to take control of the game, delivering our expected result. On the weekend, Tech outscored Huntsville 7-2, outshot them 69-26 (55-20 at even strength), went 2 for 7 on the power play and killed all 7 penalties. Again, there were stretches that made us nervous, but overall this matchup played out as expected.
During this segment we also talk about the immediate impact that Tristan Ashbrook has had on the Huskies, as well as why Tech may have struggled in the past to add a pure goal scorer like him in the lineup. Some fair criticisms were made by the hosts, but at any rate we’re big Ashbrook fans and have loved what he’s done both for team offense and lineup confidence.
Ferris State’s Season
“So how’d we get here, Harrison?” -Tim Braun, 2021
Ferris State is a really tough time to figure out this season. During their first season, the Bulldogs arguably outplayed the Bowling Green Falcons, but ended up walking away getting swept. Despite this, many Bowling Green followers will tell that their games against Ferris were their toughest games this season. As aforementioned, the team suffers from some immaturity on defense that should hopefully be solved as the players get more experienced, but beyond that it’s thing like when the team is having a good game, the goaltenders have been off or when the goaltenders are having a good game, the team’s a little off. In terms of team offense, Ferris is at almost 3 goals a game, which is the best it’s been since the 2013-14 NCAA Championship runner-up season.
The locker room culture is nothing like you’d expect. The team is well aware of their situation, but they’re also staying positive about their build for the future. Harrison has faith in the roster, he has faith in the coaching staff and at this point it seems to be a problem in the mentality. Another thing that Harrison was happy to see is that his Bulldogs have seemed to be much more disciplined than in years past. There’s clearly a missing link this season, but he’s confident that a winning culture can be forged with the roster and staff they have, and after seeing them play live, I have absolutely every reason to believe him.
Bowling Green/Minnesota State Shenanigans
Saying “things got ugly” at the end of this game is an understatement. Bowling Green’s Will Cullen delivered this nasty hit in the dying moments of a blowout loss. The aftermath of this hit resulted in a mini-brawl, resulting in a 3 game misconducts at 19:33 of the third period.
Joe Shawhan made a point on his radio show this week that he saw this hit, and absolutely agrees with the 3 game suspension handed to Cullen, but is a little dissatisfied as to why what he believes to be a very similar hit on Bantle during the Bowling Green series was called a “textbook hit” by the league officiating office, with no call and no suspension.
Watching the game, it was fairly easy to tell that Bowling Green was visibly frustrated so a situation like this seemed likely to happen, though it’s really not a good look. Minnesota State certainly has a way of making pretty good teams look silly.
We also take some time to talk about systems, and how some teams just play a system that is more likely to frustrate and beat some opponents you wouldn’t expect. Ferris has a system that has historically frustrated Tech, Northern plays a style that frustrates Ferris, and a likely explanation as to why Tech was able to take a game from Mankato early in the season is simply that Tech may play a system that is more likely to frustrate the defensively responsible Mankato than Bowling Green’s run-and-gun style of play.
Joe Shawhan Hour
This week’s Joe Show can be accessed on all major podcast apps (except for Spotify) by copying this URL and pasting it into your preferred app.
During this week’s show, Joe talked about how we’re likely to play another weird Tuesday and Tuesday series against Lake State. During the writing of this article, this was made official.
The League also stepped in to say that teams have to make every effort to play the teams that were originally scheduled to avoid a situation where coaches were picking and choosing the teams they were playing in a given week. There was at least one institution that was trying to schedule games against selected opponents and consequentially create an easier schedule, but because of the league’s decision, the finish of the season should turn out to be about as even as originally intended.
This is also the time where Dustin wanted to plug that THG is officially making our own print of MCM tee shirts. They should be available soon and the signup can be found here. On this note, Harrison swung a deal with MTU Equipment Manager Anthony Harris to wear the 100th anniversary jerseys at Ferris this past Tuesday, which is a promise that was upheld (much to my pleasure, as I finally got to see them in person).
As of the recording of the podcast, the NCHC announced that they will be playing a single-elimination playoff tournament at the Ralph Englestad Arena over the course of 4 straight days. This decision is probably going to be a domino effect, as the Big 10 and Hockey East have both revealed similar weekend, single-elimination, on-campus tournament events. It’s unlikely anybody is going to pay for a larger rink just to not have fans.
🏆 POSTSEASON NEWS 🏆— The NCHC (@TheNCHC) February 8, 2021
The #FrozenFaceoff is getting a temporary new home in 2021!
The entire 2021 #NCHCHockey Tournament will take place at @TheREA from March 12-16 and will be all single elimination
📰: https://t.co/LjEfa31TaO pic.twitter.com/kUWRpfgXK8
🏆🏆🏆 The 2021 #HockeyEast Tournament format has been unveiled! 🏆🏆🏆— Hockey East (@hockey_east) February 10, 2021
Seeding will be determined by the Hockey East Power Index, an all-new formula designed to objectively rank our teams in league play. 📈📊
Full details and schedule information: https://t.co/ruXnaTzOBb pic.twitter.com/JD7HKwhBNN
Under the assumption that the WCHA is going to do something similar, we debated which campus location would best suit the needs of the league. In order to accommodate a tournament of this style, the school needs to have
1.) an adequate number of locker rooms
2.) an adequate number of hotels in the are for players to sleep.
With that in mind, you can probably slim down the number of eligible schools for yourselves.
My girlfriend, Charlie Montgomery, gets the honor of asking the first question on the podcast this week. She wanted us to discuss the broadcast quality at Huntsville this past weekend. So, we go on a little bit of the “FloHockey Bad” tangent, but we had an interesting conversation with Harrison about broadcasting standards for each school, and who is in charge of number of cameras, camera angles, etc. To answer the question about Huntsville, Peyton Turnage is a major improvement from Huntsville’s last broadcaster, who isn’t even going to get the honor of me figuring our who he is.
Harrison talks about his unique experience with the Huntsville broadcast. At one point, he was contact traced for COVID and had to call a hockey game from his own home using the stream. Because Huntsville’s camera work was so inconsistent, half the time he was making it up as he went along. His anecdote on the subject is some can’t miss content, so be sure to tune in this week.
The next question we discussed came from Andy Bordeau. Does anybody understand what the mindset is for selecting a goalie for games? The short answer: no, but as usual, we have some awesome speculation as to what might go through Joe’s mind when selecting a goalie, such as whether the Huskies are competing in a conference or non-conference competition.
The name for this week’s episode comes from a question asked by my former roommate Patrick Koro: “what is the proper configuration for a mega corn dog?” As you can imagine, this yielded a wide variety of answers and funny moments I simply cannot do justice with in print media. Go give this segment a listen!
Ferris Series Predictions
You know the drill, but this weekend the prediction was really 3 in 1: which team is going to win the conference game, which team is going to win the out of conference game, and which team is going to take the Winter Carnival Championship? There’s a multitude of ways that these games have the potential to go, so memorize our predictions and be remember to expose our freezing cold takes once the games are finished.
Cut For Time
To say that patrons get to listen to a lot of fantastic derailments this weekend would be a severe understatement. We had Harrison on the call for over 2 hours, and if you’re a Patreon subscriber, you’ll get to hear it all, such as discussion about Tristan Ashbrook and how he ended up at Tech, our mutual respect for Grant Potulny’s role in the massive culture change at Northern Michigan, John Buccigross’s tone-deaf “old time hockey” tweet and sharing of travel stories. It’s always a great week to be a patron, but it may be especially so this week.
For additional information and more episode liner notes, check out our episode overview on Tech Hockey Guide. To make sure we can afford all our fancy equipment we purchased for the podcast and the THG website in general, please check out our patreon page and consider joining. Patrons at our Black Level or above receive an authentic MTU jersey patch and access to extra podcast content including extended versions of our other episodes. This week’s extended version is nearly 115 minutes.
Follow us on twitter at ChasingMacPod and you can submit questions through our email address, ChasingMac@techhockeyguide.com. Don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast wherever you get your podcasts. Please rate and review which will help us reach more people, and tell your friends. Please check out Jonathan Zamaites series previews every Friday and Mike Anleitner’s Old Dog in Texas column every Wednesday. Also, keep an eye out for new recruiting articles on Tuesdays. As always, special thanks to our patron saint Doc McResin for his generous donation to get this thing running, we hope you enjoy. Also, thanks to The Thank You Notes for all the bumpers in today’s episode. If you like what you hear, check them out at thethankyounotes.bandcamp.com