June 6, 2011

Report: Notre Dame looking at move to Hockey East

The Notre Dame men’s hockey program is exploring the possibility of joining Hockey East, according to media reports over the weekend.

With a varsity program at Penn State and a new conference – the Big 10 – taking the ice for the 2013-14 season, there could be reshuffling among the current conference landscape. At least one of those – Notre Dame – is looking east.

“It’s a possibility,” Notre Dame coach Jeff Jackson told the Bangor Daily News. “I know our athletic director and associate athletic director are doing their due diligence in looking at all of the alternatives.”

The Big East last expanded prior to the 2005-06 season, when Vermont left ECAC Hockey to join.

The Big 10 will take three schools from Notre Dame’s current conference, the CCHA: Michigan, Michigan State and Ohio State are all Big 10 members in other sports. Wisconsin and Minnesota will join from the WCHA.

Notre Dame is in the Big East in every sport except football, where it is a Division 1 independent. In hockey, it reached the Frozen Four last season – its second trip in four years -- before losing to eventual national champion Minnesota-Duluth.