Logan, UT: With less than a week left in the 2021/2022 regular season for Men's Division, the ACHA has released the ninth of ten scheduled rankings. The results saw several teams' current standings in their respective Region change and some that were secure last week now seem to be more precarious, and vice versa.
Sacred Heart University moved up one spot to #7 this week, and is looking to try to make a late charge to move up one more slot, and the first round bye in the NE Regionals that comes with it. Boston University again has a slim lead over Providence, Clarkson, and Westfield State for the #14 seed, which could potentially have an "At Large Bid." The SECHL will crown their Tournament Champion this weekend, and the Regional Autobid that comes with it.
Illinois State is less then 4 days away from completing a late season rise from well outside of a Regional contention to a decent chance at an "At Large Bid." The Redbirds jump from #15 to #12 will make this weekend's MACHA playoffs something that needs to be watched closely. The WCCHA also will be having their playoffs this weekend and with six teams with various security for a Regional bid, it will make the Autobid that comes with the Tournament Champion all the more important.
It took nine rankings and one week from the end of the season, but it appears that the top of the SE has been resolved. With NC State being upset by Wake Forest and FGCU sweeping Liberty last weekend, the Eagles are now in the top spot in the Region, with the IcePack tumbling to #3. Barring a major surprise vs. Northeastern this weekend, Florida Gulf Coast should wrap their seventh consecutive SE autobid to Nationals (excluding last year due to use of National Rankings). Rider's huge win of Delaware catapulted the Broncs from 10th to 7th and radically changed their outlook for the Regional seeding.
In a Region where the top seeds have been the same names all year, this region seems to be most volatile one. University of Oregon, which had seen their ranking this semester drop from #4 all the way to #11, rebounded this week to push them back into a seemingly safe position at #8. San Diego State was finally able to get back on the ice after been shut down for COVID restrictions in January and moved themselves back into an "At Large Bid" position. Seemingly out of nowhere, Grand Canyon University finds itself with postseason life sitting at #14 and having a shot depending on what happens this weekend. The TCHC and MWCHL will crown their Tournament Champions this weekend and with it their Regional Autobids. Any upsets will make things much more fluid for the teams in the lower area of the Top 15.
There is one ranking remaining, with the final ranking period ending on Sunday, February 13th. The top two teams in each region will receive an automatic bid to the 2022 National Championships. The #3-#10 seeds will have a guaranteed spot in their respective Regional Tournament. The final four teams in each regional will be selected from either League Autobids or at large teams, depending on League tournaments. Final Rankings will be released at 7pm EST on Tuesday, February 15th.
Leagues with Autobids
NECHA: Tournament Champion (Championship on 2/20)
SECHL: Tournament Champions (Championship on 2/13)
MACHA: Tournament Champion (Championship on 2/13)
NCHL: Tournament Champion (Championship on 2/19)
WCCHA: Tournament Champion (Championship on 2/13)
ACCHL: Tournament Champion (Championship on 2/20)
CSCHC: Tournament Champion (Championship on 2/20)
MACH: Tournament Champion (Championship on 2/20)
TSCHL: Tournament Champion (Championship on 2/20)