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It's all for the parents and the kid$ to keep their D-III dreams alive! Funding all of these junior programs is approaching a criminal level.
How about this, Division III imposes a strict age limit for incoming freshmen at 18.5 or 19 years old. Because of the well developed, fully funded, kids don't pay Tier I junior programs (USHL, NAHL and Canadian leagues) that feed D-I programs these schools would be exempt from the age limit. If the kid is a late blooming D-III player he can start in D-III and transfer to a D-I program. Same for any kid who chooses to go directly to college rather than fund these programs he can start as a 'true freshmen' and deiced later to move to D-I. Hopefully this would improve D-III hockey by drawing in better players.
Result: The vast majority of these Tier III junior programs would evaporate, fewer kids would be wasting their time and money playing meaningless hockey, the quality of D-III hockey would improve and more kids would graduate at 21 or 22 years old.
Time to make it happen.
I rest my case - someone posted this on the 'elitist' thread
Here's a look at the numbers provided by Neutral Zone.net, as of 2016..
70% of Division 1 college freshmen were 20-22 years old (about half are 21/22 and half are 20/21)
92% of Division 3 college freshemen are 20-22 years old (72% are 21/22 and 20% are 20/21)
Where do they come from?
D1 - 97% come from Jr hockey. 37% from USHL. 16% from BCHL (Canadian Jr A), and 6% from our local USPHL.
Only 1.4% come from Prep School.
D3 - 91% come from Jr hockey. 31% from our local EHL Premier. 13% from local USPHL. 12% from NAHL. 11% from NA3. 10% from EHL 2nd division.
About 7% came from Prep School.
Why does it have to change? We're in the middle of what you described, my son is loving hockey and looking forward to playing college hockey whether that's Division I II or III. I can afford to make that happen for him and am enjoying being able to help him to achieve his dream. If I work one extra year before retiring I make every single penny I ever spent on hockey back all the way back to mini mites. In return I have a great many experiences with my son that would have been possible but not as easy as with hockey.
Lots of kids graduate college at 24 or 25 going back as far as when we were in college. I'd much rather it be because he was chasing a dream then just d****** around like so many kids we knew.
Maybe someone should ask the Islanders organization how three of their NCDC players who were committed to DI programs before arriving their, are no longer committed to those schools or any other DI program. it must be that quality development competition they are paying for?
I too have worked a long time and have enough money. But you can't argue the system is unlike any other sport and maybe it needs fixing. A kid my son played high school hockey with is a good athlete and pretty much had his choice of go play lacross now at a D-1 school or go and follow the hockey dream and play juniors and hope you stay healthy and get a D-1 deal. Well the lacrosse school stepped up first and offered his a scholarship and away he goes off to college. No other sport thinks its 'normal' or expected to show up at 21 years old as a freshmen. And to do this for a D-3 spot is totally silly.
Call it the EJHL, USPHL, NCDC, whatever. It was all third-rate third-tier fake junior hockey.
As for the evil that is 21-year-old freshmen in NCAA hockey, they have to go. I was a big proponent of the Big Ten age proposal that was brought up two years ago and it's time to revisit that. I don't have the numbers, but I'd bet that the graduation rate for hockey is far behind other sports due to the 21 year old frosh.