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Recruit Update; Dear Mullins Staff, Do Your Job

Time to see how the recruits did over the weekend.

Shane Walsh was held off the scoreboard in both his games, a win and a loss for the Tri-City Storm.

John Parker registered an assist as the Muskegon Lumberjacks picked up their first ever home win.

Kevin Boyle had his best game of the young BCHL season as he allowed just one goal on 34 shots for the Westside Warriors.

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Saturday’s game will be broadcast on Cox.

Dick Baker has a quick blurb about the success on faceoffs.

He also talks about an incident that occurred in the student line before the game that led to the students being cut off.  I usually refrain from talking about student behavior at games because I don’t think there’s much I can do about it and if I mentioned it every time it bothered me I would be writing about it incessantly.  However, let me get to a couple points.  First, on the issue of problems with students in line rushing the doors, if students are going to act that way start giving out tickets beforehand during the week.  Once the limit is reached, no more tickets and only ticketed students show up in line.  Pretty much how they did it back in the 90’s with basketball.  In fact it brings back some good memories of waking up early on Wednesdays, waiting outside the Cage in the snow and cold, grabbing breakfast in the little grill in Whitmore, heading back up to the dorm, and proceeding to sleep through my next two classes.  Overall, I think the student line issue would be solved by such a simple solution.

What worries me more was what happened inside.  It wasn’t the incredibly unclever, “F’ BU!” and such chants which have become commonplace.  I’ve already resigned myself to the fact that our students will continue to be incapable of coming up with creative chants like the good hockey schools until a group of students step up try to lead from within the group.  What pissed me off was not once, but twice students chose to throw stuff onto the ice.  That in itself is bad enough.  If you don’t respect your UMass team enough that you’ll disrupt their game then do us all a favor and stay back in your dorm.  But the really frustrating thing was one incident which occurred right in front of me.  Other students around the assclown who threw the bottle immediately started booing him and a good number of them even pointed him out to anyone who was paying attention, which is comendable.  Sure enough, a guy in the bright yellow jacket at the top of the section was looking right at the aftermath and could’ve easily gone down and done something, anything, since the offender was identified.  But didn’t.  Until the university, the private company that operates the Mullins Center, and those in charge of security finally act to punish people who disrupt the game, I fear these type of issues will continue to escalate.

I love seeing student crowds like the other night, as does the team and the coaches.  Toot, Jack Parker, and Jeff Teglia all mentioned the student crowd in the post game press conference  The energy they bring is finally giving the Mullins Center a home ice advantage that was missing for too long in the program’s history.  But without the Mullins staff doing the very basics of their job it is detrimental to the UMass hockey experience; for the players, fans, and the other students who are mature enough not to disrupt the game they just stood in line for so long to watch.

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The AHL website has a story on all the UMass connections with the Worcester Sharks.  No mentions of James Marcou’s skills with a grocery bag.

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11 Comments

  1. Thanks for talking about this issue Rocks. I agree with everything you said and the ticket idea is great. Hopefully the people “in charge” who read your blog will use the idea. In a little defense of the current Mullins Center ushers, they are mostly students who aren’t exactly O-linemen on the football team. I don’t mean any offense by that since I’m the same way. But if I were them, I wouldn’t go up to any out of control, stronger kid, with the risk of him starting a fight or something. The Bill needs UMass police or “CSC” event staff.

    On a side note, thanks to the mature, real UMass hockey fans for making the Bill such a great place to be on Friday nights!

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  2. Anonymous

     /  October 26, 2010

    The lack of basic hockey knowledge among my fellow student fans makes starting any creative chants almost impossible. A hockey band would work wonders in terms of organized chants as well as overall atmosphere.

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    • Agreed 100% on the hockey band helping to create a great atmosphere and alleviating some of the problems.

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  3. UMass02

     /  October 26, 2010

    Perhaps going back to the tickets may be a good idea. This was the system hockey used until 2002 or so. Then again, those were times when they couldn’t even give away student tickets to games. It was simple; I just took a swing by the Cage (where the ticket office was) or the booth on the Campus Center Concourse that Athletics ran, had my card swiped, and had whatever tickets were available handed to me. I just had to show my ID when I entered the building…. I’m sure there are disadvantages to this system, but at least there was no carnage getting into Mullins (though, sadly, the teams of the late Mallen-era suffered from plenty of carnage).

    In past years, Mullins has stationed ushers at the bottom of the stairs in several of the student sections. I noticed that wasn’t done for the BU game. I hope they are back for the Providence game.

    Throwing things on the ice is just plain awful. People don’t deserve go to work and get soda bottles thrown at them . It’s dangerous and can lead to a bench minor.

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  4. Adam

     /  October 27, 2010

    As a student and a fan who actually cares about the game and the welfare of the program, I agree with everything you said, and the comment made by “anonymous.” I went to every home game last year and a bunch of away ones and never have I seen a mob like that. I eventually ran to buy a ticket for fear of not getting a seat because a couple thousand kids pushed by me. Once I got into the arena, things just got worse. I was spit on by a very drunk guy behind me after he got bored of the 6th grade poking game. And when I asked for him to be removed, the mullins attendee said Ok and then just stood there. I ended up moving but thats besides the point. I hope that kind of stupidity was just there for the opener. Somehow I doubt it.
    If any of you are bruins fans, you will probably remember the playoff series two years ago against Carolina. The fans in Raleigh were clueless, cheering offsides calls against them etc. And it was sort of ok because of where the market is.
    I love our fans for the energy they bring, but the fact is a ton of them/us have no hockey knowledge at all. If you watch the game, its pretty easy to tell which team a delayed penalty is on. Its not a bullshit tripping call if he actually tripped him. And really, the only cheers that are non-situational are F&@$_____, lets go umass, and U-MASS. Most of the time I am proud to be a Minutefan, but Friday night, I was nothing but embarrassed.

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    • Jeez. Why the hell are students spitting on each other?

      I can’t remember the last tme I saw Mullins staff take action against someone who should be ejected.

      I think the hockey iq will come as students go to more games. I was clueless about hockey when I first started going.

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  5. Anonymous

     /  October 27, 2010

    Aren’t there UMass cops or Amherst cops in the building too? Why aren’t they doing anyhting to deal with this?

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  6. Alan

     /  October 27, 2010

    Rocks, is there a person we can email about our feelings?

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    • My intention wasn’t to make this a big mail campaign but the General Manager of the Mullins is Troy Flynn, tflynn@admin.umass.edu .
      I would assume John McCutcheon would be interested in people’s disappointing hockey experiences as well.

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  7. Sam

     /  October 28, 2010

    Very good article. I was in the line during the rush. The thing that pisses me off is this: I try to go to every home game I can and consider myself a dedicated UMass hockey fan. But here I am being crushed by a bunch of drunk bros and SWesties (even though I live in SW) who think its funny to PUSH PUSH PUSH to try and get in. I’m also a security guard at a local theme park and am DAMN good at setting up and managing queue lines, and the fact that the Mullins Center has a lack of this kind of safeguard upset me, especially on the nights of the big games. And yes, the lack of understanding of the game by these people is a total drag. I’m not saying you have to be an expert, but the next time I hear yell angrily “WHY DO WE HAVE NO GOALIE?!” during a delayed penalty I’m gonna flip.

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  8. winger

     /  October 28, 2010

    I always enjoyed going to the cage to pick up my tickets. I usually went to basketball games with the hoop band, so I would give away the basketball tickets (easy to do then) and keep the hockey ones for myself.

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