Post #55 – 9/22/21 – The Adjustment, Pre-Season Polls, Sifters

NCAA Coaching Changes… Keep up with all the coaching changes across D-I and D-III HERE.

Give Someone a Stick Tap… Know someone in women’s college hockey who’s work needs some recognition? Nominate them for’s monthly ‘Stick Tap’ HERE or Email us at:

Recruiting Events/League Online Directory… Find all the recruiting events on right HERE. Want to add your event? Click HERE to fill out our event form.

In This Post…

  • The Adjustment Phase|
  • Pre-Season Polls |
  • Sifters |

The Adjustment Phase

If you are one of those players moving up an age level this year, from U14 to U16 or U16 to U19, how are you feeling about your game so far? A little off or frustrated you’re not playing as well as you thought you would… Overwhelmed with all those new skills & systems to learn… Not playing as much as you would like… No time yet on the PP or PK… does everyone you play against seem bigger, faster, stronger???

Well, if you answered ‘yes’ to any of the above – welcome to the Adjustment Phase.

Just about everyone, at every level hockey, has some kind of adjustment. Youth players all the way up to NHLers have adjustment periods – seldom is anyone immune from it. We’ll answer exactly what the adjustment phase is, how long it can last for, and why it’s probably the most critical period of your hockey development. The ‘Adjustment Phase’ is really just a period of time during ones hockey development where a player might struggle with certain elements of the game as they move from one level to another.

May be the pace of the game is too fast to handle and you struggle to make good decisions. Or you aren’t physically strong enough to handle the much older/stronger competition.

Yes – the adjustment phase is excruciatingly frustrating at times, who wants to play poorly, right? Players hate when this happens, that is until you understand how it can help you. It’s kind of like taking a test in school… if you knew what questions were going to be on the test before you took it, that would really help, right? Well, if hockey is the test, then the adjustment phase are the ANSWERS! When players go through the adjustment phase, they learn what they need to focus on in order to improve and hopefully get to a point where they can impact the game on a consistent basis at the new level they are at. The time it takes to get to that point can vary greatly however.

If we knew how long the adjustment phase lasted, someone would be a gazillionaire. There’s a lot that goes into how long this takes. For some players it could take weeks to get adjusted, or months, or the better part of a full season. It’s going to be different for everyone. Genetics plays a role, learning ability plays a role, work ethic, desire, mental mindset, and the list goes on. What can help accelerate passing by the adjustment phase? Tough to come up with a full-proof answer but, here are a few things you can do to possibly shorten the length your adjustment may take.

  • Know what your coach wants to see in your play
  • Evaluate your game with video (if possible), so you can see how what your coaches are describing… or perhaps in this case, not seeing so you can identify what you’re struggling with
  • Identify the skills needed to accomplish your goals
  • Create an action plan and timeline to work on the skills necessary

Bottom line, the Adjustment Phase could be the most important piece to your hockey development. It’s a necessary part of the process of playing well at the level you’re at. The more you understand how to approach it – the better you’ll be the next time it comes around.

Pre-Season Polls

It’s that time of year, Pre-Season Coaches Poll time. The NCAA D-I season starts up for real this weekend with games that count, and each conference has announced its pre-season coaches poll. In addition, and USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine publish a weekly Top 10 poll during the season.

Like with most pre-season polls, there is nothing to go on from this year. These for the most part, are purely based on last seasons records, key player departures as well as recruited additions. The WCHA, CHA, and ECAC have announced their pre-season coaches polls which are below. We’ll get you Hockey East and the NEWHA once they are officially announced.


New NCAA Stat Site To Replace… Long time statistical college hockey website, a favorite among college hockey coaches and fans, will no longer be updating statistical season data. 20-21 was its last year in service. The website will however, still remain and any of its prior year statistical data will be available. CHS filled a huge void and was the ‘Go-To’ college hockey online resource for live scores, game stats, game line-up charts, conference standings, and any number of college hockey stats. Taking its place will be a NCAA branded site found here: We have provided a limited overview of the NCAA site and included a comparison vs. collegehockeystats found HERE. The NCAA site tracks many of the same data, there are some major differences as well. A detailed description of how to get certain data is outlined in the form also.

So why the change? The NCAA is transitioning away from a very popular game stats software program called StatsCrew and moving to a new software program called LiveStats.

Marmer and Roth Selected to Work With Boston Bruins… Quinnipiac Player Development and Operations Director Danielle Marmer and Holy Cross Associate Head Coach Meredith Roth have been selected to participate in the Boston Bruins Diversity & Inclusion Scouting Mentorship Program. The 9-month project aims to use members of the Bruins’ operations staff to increase the mentee’s pursuits in scouting and or a professional career in hockey. You can read the official Bruins’ announcement HERE.

U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame Museum Game Announced… The Minnesota Golden Gophers will host St. Cloud State University Nov. 20th in the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame Museum Face-Off Classic. Puck drop is set for 3pm cst.

Speaking of Minnesota, the Gophers program turns 25-years this year.

US Allows Non-Citizens To Travel By Air To US In November… The U.S. Gov’t announced Monday starting in November fully vaccinated non-US citizens will be able to fly to the US. A negative COVID test will be required within three days of arrival. The land border between the US and Canada remains shut-down for another month until Oct. 21. We can’t seem to find much in the way of specifics with the new US guidance regarding Canadians. We will keep you updated as more is known.

IIHF World Championships Moves to August… Women’s hockey just got a nice boost from the IIHF as it is moving the top level Women’s World Championships Tournament to August in Olympic years beginning with 2022. Denmark has applied to be the host country in 2022. It’s a move that makes a lot of sense coming off the sports most high profile event at the Olympics. The best get to showcase themselves on the world stage 6 months later at a time of year when there is a hockey void on TV. No other league in the world that garners a TV audience, are usually playing games in August. You can read the IIHF official announcement HERE.

Until Next Time…

Grant Kimball is founder and contributing writer at Women’s College and beginning his 3rd season as an Assistant Coach with the Yale University women’s hockey program. Grant has developed an experienced perspective in the world of women’s ice hockey, having coached and recruited players from across the globe during his 25+ year amatuer and NCAA coaching career. He has coached at 6 NCAA DIII and DI programs in the NCHA (D3), the CHA, WCHA, Hockey East, ECAC, and the Ivy League (DI). Beyond coaching, Grant served as a site representative for the 2019 NCAA quarterfinal of the D-I NCAA Tournament. He also currently serves as an Officer with the American Hockey Coaches Association as Vice President of Membership and sits on the AHCA’s Women’s Hockey Executive Committee.

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