Bracketology: Finals weekend

Who will play for a chance to play in Boston?

The WCHA, ECAC, and Hockey East quarterfinals are in the books. The final conference - the CHA - holds their tournament is all one weekend, which coincides with the other three conferences’ final weekend.

We had lots of upsets out east; three series went to underdogs and then we had another three series go to a third game and there were plenty of overtimes to keep you entertained.

How to watch the Hockey East, WCHA, ECAC, CHA tournaments

Follow along from home with the BC Interruption Tournament Predictor.

The bracket selection show will be March 8 at 9 p.m.

Home Ice Locks

Three teams have locked a home game for the NCAA. They have a big enough lead over 5th that no matter what happens in the conference tournaments they can’t drop out of the top four seeds.

Cornell (1-2)

Cornell should be the number one seed.  If they were to lose to Harvard or Princeton and Wisconsin wins the WCHA they would fall to number two.

Wisconsin (1-3)

The Badgers control their destiny for the two seed.  They can pass Cornell in the previously discussed scenario but could also fall to number three with a loss to Minnesota.

Minnesota (2-4)

Minnesota got locked into home ice when Quinnipiac stole a game from Princeton in overtime on Saturday. A loss to Ohio State and Northeastern winning HEA would drop them to four but they can clinch third with a win on Saturday.

Home Ice Contenders

These teams are currently on the bubble for the last home ice spots. Northeastern should take it but only two other teams can factor into the conversation.

Northeastern (3-6)

The Huskies have the easiest path forward. If NU were to drop their game against Maine they could fall to 6th if both Princeton and Ohio State win out.  Beating Maine would lock no lower than fifth. They control their destiny though, winning Hockey East means there no paths for anyone to pass them.

Princeton (4-7)

To get home ice the Tigers must win the ECAC while having Northeastern not win Hockey East.  They could fall to seventh if Clarkson were to win the ECAC.  A fall to seventh would put them at risk of missing the tournament if there is an upset winner in HEA or the WCHA, though both situations are unlikely.

Ohio State (4-6)

The path is narrow for home ice, Northeastern has to lose to Maine, Princeton must lose to Cornell and the Buckeyes must win the WCHA.  Ohio State is pretty safely in unless there are two upset winners.

At-Large Contenders

Clarkson is the only possible at large team remaining that also doesn’t have a chance at home ice.

Clarkson (5-7)

The Golden Knights are in the worst position of the teams left standing in the at large pool.  Any upsets will kick them out but they do control their destiny, simply beating Princeton would keep them safe over one upset.

Auto-Bid Only

These teams in each conference whose only chance at making the national tournament are if they receiving the auto bid spot for winning their conference’s tournament.

Hockey East: New Hampshire, Connecticut, Maine

ECAC: Harvard

WCHA: Minnesota Duluth

CHA: Lindenwood, RIT, Penn State, Syracuse, Robert Morris, Mercyhurst

Bracket Prediction


1. Cornell v 8. CHA
2. Wisconsin v 7 Clarkson
3. Northeastern v 6 Princeton
4. Minnesota v 5 Ohio State

If Chalk

1 Cornell v 8 CHA
2 Wisconsin v 7 Clarkson
3 Minnesota v 6 Ohio State
4 Northeastern v 5 Princeton

As Is Current Bracket

1 Cornell v 8 CHA
2 Wisconsin v 7 Clarkson
3 Minnesota v 6 Princeton
4 Northeastern v 5 Ohio State

This hasn’t changed at all since last week.

This bracket has three flights and a possible fourth depending on the CHA champion.  There is no way it will stand.  The committee will certainly flip Princeton and Ohio State.

Likely Bracket

1 Cornell v 8 CHA
2 Wisconsin v 7 Clarkson
3 Minnesota v 5 Ohio State
4 Northeastern v 6 Princeton

As a recap, the bracket is made up of eight teams. Four are autobids - the winner of the postseason tournament for the CHA, WCHA, Hockey East, and ECAC. The remaining four spots are picked by the Committee. The top four teams are then seeded as one through four according to the PairWise The final four teams are seeded in such a way that limits travel, per the NCAA manual.

The quarterfinals are at the high seed’s home rink on March 13 or 14. The four winners will advance to the Frozen Four which will be in Boston March 20-22.