EDINA, MN — One of the most exciting college hockey tournaments in the country is getting a facelift.
The WCHA announced Tuesday that the entirety of the postseason games will be hosted at onâ€“campus sites and will no longer be known as the “Final Five”. Starting next season, the WCHA playoffs will consist of four best of three quarterfinal round series, hosted by the league’s top four regular season teams, followed by two bestâ€“ofâ€“three semifinal round series hosted by the highest remaining seeds. And the WCHA Championship will be a single game, hosted by the highest remaining seed. In a joint conference call, WCHA commissioner Bill Robertson talked about the viability of such a landmark decision.
“We wanted an atmosphere where the fans would be excited when it’s on campus. There’s a better chance for fans to see this up close and personal. And we thought for the student-athlete themselves, the fan experience there for them to play in front of larger crowds would be an added plus and bonus,” Robertson said.
This format will continue for at least the next three seasons. The WCHA schedule will remain at 28 league games for next season and will be released this Thursday.