Agree, my kids prep has played a few games but skate every day and work on skills. The 3 schools he is talking with see this year as 1 less year of grind on the body. Glass half full mentality is the only thing getting him through all of this.
FWIW, my son is a freshman at prep. We have been approached by a couple of schools, most of them hinting at a repeat to have him contribute for the full 4 years. One school said it doesn’t matter to them. He did not make varsity but that’s ok, he played one scrimmage with the big boys and he said everything happens so much faster. It probably was a good experience for next year.
He is a straight A even at prep and that’s why we did not want to waste another year. He is loving it where he is. One of his coaches told us, choose the school you would like to be at should hockey be taken away from you. That’s how we did it.