View Full Version : College Roller Hockey has Just been ruined
08-12-2002, 09:34 AM
USA Hocley InLine is the worst thing that could happen to college roller hockey. USA Hockey pays no attention to inline what so ever. No promotons no funds. It's sad to see such a nice league go.
08-12-2002, 01:10 PM
I don't think the alliance with USAHIL means CRHL is being RUN by USAHIL. It will still have the same leadership as it always has - the point is that USAHIL's program can definitely benefit and become more "marketable" with the involvement of CRHL, and vice-versa. In fact, the only change you should really see with the affiliation should be positive - nothing will be "taken away" from CRHL, as I understand it.
Don't knock it till we see how it goes :)
Eastern Collegiate Roller Hockey Association
08-12-2002, 02:10 PM
USA Hockey is 10% inline and 90% ice. They will do nothing if very little to promote it, just my opinion.
08-12-2002, 05:43 PM
While I agree that your point is valid in recent past, I'd have to point out that American Hockey magazine (USAHIL's quarterly publication) increased their coverage of inline hockey in the latest issue by over 600%. This is a healthy sign.
08-12-2002, 06:12 PM
To echo Mr. Burke's comments, the CRHL is not being run by USA Hockey InLine. The CRHL will continue to be an independant entity and appreciates the continued support of USA Hockey InLine.
This is a real win-win deal and hopefully a step towards the unification of our very fragmented sport.
Collegiate Roller Hockey League
08-12-2002, 06:15 PM
What, you'd prefer USA Roller Sports? LOL
08-12-2002, 08:16 PM
The CRHL will be a uniting force in the roller hockey industry. I also point out that this is not our first relationship with another major hockey organization. We also have a relationship with NARCh that continues as well as we continue to build bridges with USARS and AAU.
The CRHL is not striving to be USAHIL, nor is USAHIL going to be administering the CRHL or any of the CRHL Member Organizations. We are only striving for unity, shared resources, and the valuable benefits that come not only to CRHL and USAHIL, but also to the entire roller hockey community.
Not only will CRHL show improvements, but USA Hockey may also demonstrate a more publically inline friendly attitude as a result of this relationship, than what a person such as yourself has perceived.
It happens to be exciting and I am thankful that it has begun. It is a step in a positive direction.
SD: Didn't you see my thread below about the expansion in the magazine?? :)
08-12-2002, 10:51 PM
No I take that back anything but USA Roller Sports!!!!! Acutally I don't take it back but no USARS deal? I am not partial to USA Hockey Inline becuase I've seen what they've done and it sickens me that NARCh has to make up for everyones misteaks. Some one along the lines of NCAA ( I can dream) or NARCh should take total control. I still don't know about this USA Hockey InLine situation. Just so you all know I am not bashing either CRHL or USA Hockey InLine.
I have to agree that it seems as though In-Line hockey appears to be more like ice-hockey on wheels than a program that is trying to differ itself from what we see on the ice. It seems to me if In-line Hockey is going to truly be a highly recognized sport then it must take all steps necessary to eliminate all that is ice hockey such as the body checking and stickwork
08-15-2002, 11:16 AM
Vice President of Operations
Buffalo Wings Roller Hockey
08-15-2002, 03:28 PM
CRHL is non-checking leaguewide. Isn't that setting that differentiation you're talking about?
Eastern Collegiate Roller Hockey Association
08-15-2002, 05:39 PM
I am changing the name of my post to college roller hockey has not been changed. USA Inline will not make it worse. I still think CRHL will be the same, no improvment.
08-17-2002, 04:06 PM
A wonderful KNEE-JERK reaction! Pretty funny, actually. "USA HOCKEY INLINE is the worst thing that could happen to college roller hockey."?? Oh, come on. I can think of a lot of things that could be worse. Like eliminating regions from being able to compete at Nationals. Like being elitist and closing the door on upcoming programs (universities) that have worked hard to compete at the National level. Like people in power at the CRHL being more concerned with their favorite school or favorite region than the overall strength of the sport across the entire country ("strength" meaning participating schools AND competitive ability). USA HOCKEY INLINE is far from being the worse thing that could happen to college roller hockey.
08-17-2002, 10:23 PM
USA InLine certianly won't do anything to improve it. What have they done to improve anything in this sport? Give the ownership to NARCh and then well start talking.
08-18-2002, 06:51 AM
I would have sent this in a private email, but you don't identify an email address.
Oh, come on. I can think of a lot of things that could be worse. Like eliminating regions from being able to compete at Nationals.
Regions will not be eliminated from attending Nationals. In fact, at least one new region will be a part of Nationals this year.
Like being elitist and closing the door on upcoming programs (universities) that have worked hard to compete at the National level.
Again, no doors are being closed. In the past, regions receive bids to a CRHL National Championship event. Those regions set their rules as to how they will dole out their bids to their teams. Our National event can only be so large. Not everyone will make it, but all regions get bids. Bid selections for the regions have always been done as fair as possible and discussed with the entire CRHL Board beforehand, who has set the process in place.
Like people in power at the CRHL being more concerned with their favorite school or favorite region than the overall strength of the sport across the entire country ("strength" meaning participating schools AND competitive ability).
The only people in power in the CRHL are the teams. The teams are the CRHL. This is the spirit of the CRHL.
Unfortunately, many teams do not speak up or volunteer to do any work. Yet certain teams are the first to complain when they feel their issues are not being addressed. The CRHL requires much work. Those who are on the CRHL Board are mostly Directors of their regions. Their commitment and work that they do for their regions is extreme in most cases, and they (myself included) are left with very little time to work on things at a National CRHL level. Personally, I try and do as much as possible.
If you would like to vent, please email me privately. Your setiments have been echoed in the past and I would not mind hearing what you personally have to say about the CRHL Restructuring. Your terminology used in your post is directly reflective of 1 or more people whom I know. Please identify yourself and region in your email. If you are representing a legitimate club, I will make sure your voice is heard not just at the regional level, but at the National level as well.
<A HREF="http://www.ecrha.net" target="_new">http://www.ecrha.net</A>
<A HREF="http://www.crhl.net" target="_new">http://www.crhl.net</A>
Yes a non-checking program is what I am talking about. I have had the honour of watching ice hockey develop and change and become a game where coaches and scouts will salivate over some individual just because he is over 6 foot tall. What these people are only interested in is the size not the players ability. I wonder how many times anyone has heard the statement, "You can't teach size".
The game of In-Line in our part of the world has brought back the finesse of the game of Hockey. It allows those individuals who can skate and pass and shoot to excel, while those who can barely make it up and down the floor are left to wave their sticks at those individuals, and if someone happens to get in the way of a player they feel it necessary to reach out and touch someone.
There is a reason that the Finns and Swedes have one the past two IIHF World Championships. It is a direct result their ability to pass and skate and be more creative than everyone else in the world at this point.
Sorry for the rant, it is just that I have been lucky enough to have three sons who play the game. Two went to NARch for the first time this summer. As well as participating in the USA Inline Junior National program in Colorado a week ago. We have started to develop a bit of a passion for the game of Inline in our houshold and I just can't seem to get enough.
Rocky View Inline
Calgary Alberta, Canada
08-19-2002, 09:11 AM
Unfortunately, I don't think the theoretical operating budgets of NARCh and USA Hockey Inline will ever be the same. So in that regard, NARCh will never be able to, nor probably WANT to, take over some type of NGB status.
08-19-2002, 10:49 AM
Rebecca, let's talk about ANOTHER KNEE JERK REACTION. Read my posting. I said there are a lot of things that COULD be worse than USA HOCKEY INLINE being affiliated with the CRHL. Sounds like you're awfully sensitive to people bringing up hypothetical scenarios that, in MY opinion, would be harmful to the CRHL. Certainly more harmful than an association with USA Hockey InLine.
This is a public message board. I'm sorry you don't like me posting my opinions here. Your sensitivity to my posting may reveal an attitude of "CRHL: Love It or Leave It." I'm merely observing that I think (again, just my opinion and it may not be shared by anyone else) many things could negatively impact the CRHL. I just don't happen to think joining forces with USA Hockey InLine is one of them.
I want to see the CRHL grow in strength (both numerically and in more competitive play). Just because I think these scenarios would be harmful to the CRHL doesn't mean: (a) I'm right or (b) that they'll happen. These scenarios (and many others) just happen to be my view of things that WOULD be far worse than involvement with USA Hockey InLine.
Didn't mean to get your blood pressure up.
08-19-2002, 05:53 PM
I don't think she realized it was a hypothetical scenario. To be honest, I didn't the first time I read it, either :) I think everyone is a little frazzled lately. Sorry for the short fuses!
To make this thread a little more productive, what would you do to improve the CRHL and college roller hockey on a whole? I think having more heads and ideas together on this may help us out. Any ideas?
Eastern Collegiate Roller Hockey Association
08-19-2002, 08:32 PM
Mike, I don't claim to have many answers, but I do have some experience having worked for a number of years as a volunteer with USA Hockey InLine back in the early start up years. I was on the rules committee for a few years and spent a great deal of time helping develop roller hockey leagues in a 4 state area. I've been involved in this sport for quite a long time and have a strong interest in seeing the sport thrive at this level.
One, grow the participation. The more players and colleges the better. No, they won't all be fully developed right off the bat, but give them time and opportunity. There isn't a roller hockey league in the country that started out fully developed. Like growing kids, they have to nourished, encouraged and given time to grow. I realize the CRHL has a challenge of how to do that and at Nationals there seemed to be many concerns by many different colleges from various geographical areas about possible restructuring of the CRHL to cater to the fully developed programs. Personally, I do think that would be a mistake because it would not permit other college programs to develop. The CRHL can use USA Hockey InLine's help in promoting the sport at college campuses all over the country. The more the better. Every college should have a team in the league. That makes it better for everyone. USA Hockey InLine (in my opinion) can help with that effort. Make entry into the league as painless and easy as possible.
Two, this means you'll have to have a "place" (division) where teams can compete. This is perhaps the most difficult challenge facing the CRHL. How do you foster programs that range in skill and develop from the Lindenwoods/Michigan States to the lesser known schools that find it difficult to compete within their own regional league. You can't manage that from a national level (in my opinion). You've got to trust regional programs to foster the growth at the grassroots level. You've got to support regional programs (I'm not saying you're not doing that, I'm just making a statement). Like the NCAA you've almost got to go by campus enrollment because this is a college league we're talking about - not a house league where every player can be evaluated in a draft. You've got schools entering the league this next season (perhaps) who have never fielded a team before. You can't assess their skills. You've got to throw them in the regional league and find out firsthand where they land. They may lose every game. They may win their division. You just never know and that makes this league difficult to manage (in my opinion). So, you continue to put the team in the division that suits that school's enrollment number (because we're naturally assuming the larger schools have the better chance of drawing a larger supply of players...and possibly a larger number of skilled players). No, that's not necessarily true, but you have to make a judgment based on something and frankly, I know of no better standard. At the regional level teams may win or lose and the margin of victory may be lopsided. That's just the lumps that newly formed teams may have to suffer as they build a program. The regional leagues must do everything in their power to encourage those teams who suffer horrible defeats, but it's part of the growing process. What can the regional leagues do to help them? Find them a coach, help them learn how to promote their program, help them find places to practice, provide them leads when they learn the name of an experienced player who may be attending their school, etc. Just be there to serve them in every way possible as they get up to speed.
Three, do the exact same thing with the National tournament. Let each region, however weak or strong, send it's best representatives. Win, lose or draw - let the chips fall where they may and permit schools to learn how to compete at the National level. The problem with doing it any other way is the fact that this is a non-scholarship sport driven by the luck of the enrollment of skilled players. For instance, let's take Lindenwood as an example. Right now they're at the top of the heap. They've got a great program going, but it's based on the fact they've got skilled players. Suppose in the next 2 years they graduate the bulk of their skilled players and are unable to replace them with similar skill. All of a sudden they go from top of the heap to joining the ranks of the other mere mortal teams in the CRHL. That's why I personally don't like the so-called "elite" program. Those programs currently considered elite are subject to not being elite at some future date. And the programs that aren't considered elite may become elite within the next season or so - all based on the skill of the individual players who decide to attend those schools. Without scouting and scholarships it's strictly reduced to the luck of having skilled players enroll at any particular school. No matter how sophisticated the organization of the hockey club, if they don't have skilled players they're not going to compete at the National level.
Okay, now we're up to the challenge of what to do when Lindenwood and Michigan State don't want to play "Podunk University" because they're inferior in skill. Tough. Play them and beat them knocking them out of the tournament. It happens. Podunk may not deserve to play on the same surface with them, but that's life. Parity isn't promised or even attempted. There is no way to achieve it fairly because you are severely limited to the luck of where the skilled player decides to go to school. And let's face it, all it takes is one very skilled player to make a decision to attend Podunk U. and he'll foster other skilled players to go there, too. In a single semester the tide CAN turn. If the program has the resolve to endure the tough times they can build and become more competitive over time. They may never win the National championship, but only one of those is crowned every season anyway. You can't build the league for only 1 team, or the current top 8 teams...because they're all subject to change over time! Everybody deserves the chance to find out where they fall within the national scope. If they can't compete, they'll lose quickly and become stat feeding for the superior team. That's life. I don't know how you could organize it otherwise until this becomes a scholarship sport where schools can recruit players and go after talent. Most schools (I'd imagine) are relying on their current roster to solicit other players to attend their school in an effort to improve their roster. Good players want to play with good players. So when Podunk U. gets a great player, not because of the hockey club, but because Podunk U. is near his home and because they've got a great biology department, then all of the sudden they have the chance to break through to the next level because he might be able to talk his best friend (some stud goaltender) to attend, too. Give the best teams of each region the chance to succeed or fail on their own merits and don't let the best teams nationally complain too much because they have to pound a lesser team. If competition is going to improve, you have to let that pounding take place. This isn't YOUTH hockey. These are young men. They're not mites. I wouldn't advise this system if we were dealing with young kids, but this is COLLEGE hockey we're discussing.
Four (and I'll stop here 'cause I'm posting far too long of a message here), have a uniform rulebook and some uniform codes nationally. USA Hockey InLine did a good thing by establishing national guidelines for how the games should be played, officiated and coached. The leagues under the sanction of USA Hockey InLine are strongly encouraged to adopt those guidelines. Now each league is under unique ownership. They can do whatever they please, but they're encouraged to play without a center line off sides (for example). They're encouraged to play with a puck, not a ball. They're encouraged to use only certified officals who have tested with a certain degree of knowledge. The rule book becomes the league standard by which all games are played. The CRHL is a bit different in that the participants need to have a voice. You're dealing with a more experienced player at the college level and hopefully, you're dealing with a more experienced league structure at the regional level than your average local league (which range from a parking lot YMCA league to a full blown indoor, climate controlled Sport Court facility). USA Hockey InLine must have a one-size-fits-all approach because the differences in facilities and league sophistication. Regional league commissioners (or whatever position they're called) should collectively unite on various aspects of the college game, as much as possible. I'm sure some regions have more teams than others, but you should unite (and maybe you already do) on as much as possible by stressing the need to grow participation with the creation of as much fairness at the regional level as possible. Again, make the price of entry (not just financially, but in trouble) as low as possible so new colleges can join in on the fun. This is high level competition (at the National level, at least) but come on - it's FUN. We're not a factory for the NHL or some revised version of the old RHI. We're just colleges having some fun playing against competing colleges. At the regional level is great fun to have the state schools or regional schools squaring off. Nationally, it's equally cool to pit one region against another and have some good natured competition. The CRHL has to view the good of the whole without regard to skill or geography. The league is not fully grown yet and it may be years before that level of sophistication can take place where the teams are divided based on skill. You can't very well take a stud team in a weak region and make them fly around to play comparable teams outside their region, merely because they're stud that particular season. Get rules and guidelines that can apply to everybody, everywhere. Model USA Hockey InLines grassroots approach by trying to help every league (or school) regardless of how strong they are at the time. It's the only way you're going to improve the participation rate and the play.
Encourage inter-regional competition. Even if the games don't count (regular season), provide a way for the strong teams (based on regional league record) to compete against each other. NARCH was great. It's great to have college competition at NARCH. If not NARCH, put on your own tournament (not when it competes with NARCH due to too many JUNIOR division players and SENIOR division players). Hold it at some centrally located place or rotate it and give teams a chance to pay their way to it, if they want. Let them fund raise or do whatever they can to get there. Again, just get the regionals on the same page so they can all compete, if they want. Winners win and losers will lose. Standard rules, standard game formats, standard number of games (within variables to account to the number of teams in the region), standard officiating (how do you want games to be called), standard season dates (first games can't be played until a certain date and the final games must be played by a certain date; this helps establish which teams are permitted to attend Nationals), etc. You get the idea.
I'm sure I've only touched the tip of the proverbial iceberg, but the bottom line is GET MORE PLAYERS PLAYING by fostering more schools to participate and GIVE MORE TEAMS PLAYING the chance to prove themselves by growing and developing.
Little kids don't jump up and start walking until first they've learned to crawl. It takes time and courage to stand up for the first time. Give teams the chance to get up off their knees and you'll see some teams that'll be running in no time. World-class sprinters once crawled just like the rest of us. Who knows which teams might erupt to the top if they just had the chance?
Just my two (more like four) cents! As always, I reserve the right to be wrong. And Richard, sorry for swallowing so much bandwidth with this lengthy post!
Belvadere (now taking a deep breath)
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