THE STANLEY CUP PLAYOFFS, LEADERSHIP & GORDON “GINNY” CHRISTIAN: Brad Berry

Brad Berry
Head Coach
UND Hockey

Tuesday, June 13 2017, Hour 1: Brad Berry joined the program to talk about the just completed Stanley Cup Playoff, Carter Rowney’s path as an undrafted free agent  to becoming a Stanley Cup winner, leadership and the life of UND legend Gordon “Ginny” Christian who passed away last week in Warroad MN.

BRIAN IDALSKI: The Next Step for the UND Women’s Hockey Program

Brian Idalski
UND Women’s Hockey
Head Coach

The Head Coach of the UND Women’s Hockey Team, Brian Idalski,  joined MacTalk to discuss the Team’s decision to fight UND President Mark Kennedy’s decision to terminate their program.

What’s at stake?  “If this goes away it’s not coming back and that’s a huge loss for not only the NCAA and the college hockey community, that’s a huge loss for youth players, that’s a huge loss for younger players who have aspirations of getting to this level.”

Were you shocked?  “We weren’t on the list in the fall to stand before a group and talk about these things and to say why our program is important to the University,” he continued “there was no discussion and I think that’s what’s made it hard  for our player to move on.”

What can you run the hockey program for?  “I really think I can operate a first class program at 1.3 (million dollars) .”  The Budget that UND released was $1.9 million dollars, Idalski said he didn’t really understand how UND arrived at that number.

The next step:  “That’s not my realm when it comes to finance or fundraising at that level.  I know some people have reached out and if we can make some headway and start making some gains and do that, perhaps we can sit at a table and have a conversation.”

 

ERIK FABIAN: “Our athletes want to fight, that’s what we want to do”

Erik Fabian
Asst Coach
UND Women’s Hockey

Erik Fabian, the Assistant Coach of the UND Women’s Hockey Team joined MacTalk today to discuss the aftermath of the University’s decision to drop women’s hockey.

“Our athletes want to fight, so that’s what we want to do” Fabian said.  He spoke of the challenge that was in front of them “We’re here for our players.  We will fight with them and  beside them, we will do it respectfully, we’ll do it professionally and we want to get this done.  That is something that is definitely near and dear to all of us here. We always talk about being a family, once a family always a family.  We will never end the fight.”

His message for UND Hockey fans is simple, sign our petition.

UND WOMEN’S HOCKEY PLAYERS: “What we’re waiting on is President Kennedy to get back to us”

Taylor Flaherty
UND Player
Sara Lecavalier
UND Player
Margot Miller
Former UND Player

Current UND Women’s Hockey players Taylor Flaherty, Sara Lecavalier and former player Margot Miller (currently an ER Nurse and Assistant Coach of the Grand Forks KnighRiders) joined Mike McNamara to discuss the elimination of the UND Women’s Hockey Program and the future.  All three describe their pride in the program and the shock they felt upon hearing the news via social media that their sport was being eliminated while they were on the ice at Ralph Engelstad Arena.

The Team has established a petition that they’re asking the public to support, but of more immediate concern is a request they’ve made of the President of the University of North Dakota this past weekend for a number that would fund the program.  “What we’re waiting on is President Kennedy to get back to us” Sara Lecavalier said, “Our Coach Brian (Idalski) had a meeting  with Faison this weekend and this number is supposed to get back to us relatively quick. Whether or not that happens that’s in President Kennedy’s hands.”

In the end, all three were resolute about continuing their fight even if they don’t get a number of President Kennedy “That’s when we’d have to take another step, if it comes to that” Lecavalier stated.

 

 

 

 

THOUGHTS & QUESTIONS ABOUT A HISTORIC PRESS CONFERENCE AND AN INCREDIBLE WEEK: Tom Miller

Tom Miller
Sports Writer
Grand Forks Herald

Tom Miller joined Mike McNamara to discuss yesterday’s historic press conference at UND which eliminated Women’s Ice Hockey.   Here are some of the questions Tom addresses:

Was the “Armageddon Option” the only way to do this?  How do other programs afford Women’s Ice Hockey?  Was there no middle ground?

Can a “mid-major” program afford women’s ice hockey?   Was notifying the Conference, then the donors and finally the players the right thing to do?

Why was there no empirical evidence passed out at the press conference?

Why didn’t President Kennedy own the decision to end the woman’s hockey program?

OPINION: #BeBoldForChange NOW

Extra-curricular activities exist in school districts across the nation to develop the character of young people in a way classroom activities don’t.  Whether athletics, arts, academics or any of the other extra-curricular activities that students participate in, each encourages teamwork, leadership skills, cooperation and social development that students don’t get to the same degree from working in the classroom.  We are seeing the tangible benefits of these extra-curricular experiences play out on a national stage as two of our own, Monique and Jocelyne Lamoureux play prominent roles in the United States Women’s National Team’s fight with USA Hockey for the equitable treatment of their program and for women’s hockey.

One might go so far to say that all of the activities Monique and Jocelyne have participated in have led them to this fight, on this stage and for the leadership roles they are currently playing in this fight.  This stand by the U.S. Women’s National Team will change the landscape of women’s hockey forever. It is one thing as an athlete to appear in the New York Times or the Washington Post in the sports section of those papers, it is quite another to appear on the front pages of these historic newspapers as leaders in a fight for equality and change.

Could we as a community be prouder? No. I see them, their conduct as they fight, their restraint and dignity in public through the same lens that I have viewed young Marines, Sailors, Soldiers and Airman from the region fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan – with incredible pride.  But pride isn’t enough, what can we do? For starters, the Grand Forks County Commission, the Grand Forks City Council, the East Grand Forks City Council and the Polk County Commission and their counterparts across the nation where hockey is played should quickly pass singular three part resolutions:

(1) Supporting the U.S. Women’s National Team’s fight for equal treatment

(2) Condemning USA Hockey’s attempt to use high school athletes as replacements

(3) Calling for new leadership of USA Hockey; when the head is misguided or rotten, it must be replaced

Finally, I am equally disgusted and uplifted by what I’ve seen in this fight. I am DISGUSTED by USA Hockey’s backward approach to this issue, their continuing public relations disaster and I am incensed by their recruitment of high school players to become “scabs” and play in an international tournament in Michigan, a pro-labor state that will certainly not welcome scabs – what a great experience to offer those young women.  I am INSPIRED by the conduct of our Women’s National Team and the solidarity of female hockey players across the nation that have told USA Hockey that they will not participate as replacement players while the players of their National Team are fighting for a brighter future.

Bravo ladies, stay the course, our NATION stands behind you.

#mojo #proud #BeBoldForChange

Mike McNamara is the host of MacTalk, (a talk radio show that streams on the Internet), a retired U.S. Marine with combat deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan and is also a former card carrying USA Hockey Coach and Board Member of the Southern California Amateur Hockey Association, a regional governing body of USA Hockey.

TUCKER POOLMAN, THE ATMOSPHERE AT SCHEELS ARENA AND DEAN BLAIS RETIRES: Dane Jackson

Dane Jackson
Associate Head Coach
UND Men’s Hockey

WILL TUCKER POOLMAN PLAY?  “Hopefully Tucker will be able to play this weekend and we’ll see if he can.  We played a big chunk of the game  without him and we can still play and win.”  Asked if Poolman would be a “game time” decision, Jackson responded “we’re going to see how he’s coming along throughout the week and go from there.”

THE ATMOSPHERE AT SHEELS ARENA IN FARGO IS GOING TO BE EXCITING, MUCH LIKE THE “OLD” RALPH:  “It gives our guys an extra boost.  It’s gonna be an just awesome environment.  Our fans are so vocal and so supportive, it’s like a big home game for us”  Jackson said “our guys are really excited about getting back to that atmosphere.”  The impact of that environment on the game?  “I thought it was a huge advantage for us when we advanced and beat Quinnipiac and St. Cloud two years ago.”   Needless to say, this group is looking forward to Friday’s game and the electric environment that will certainly be resident in Fargo.

 

Don’t miss Dane’s comments about Dean Blais’s retirement, a great tribute.