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Penn State Hockey: at Minnesota

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The Lions make their first ever trip to venerable Mariucci Arena.

Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE

The college wrestling post season has begun. College basketball is nearly there as well. But college hockey, which began a full month to six weeks before either of those sports? College hockey rolls on, with almost a full month of regular season yet to play.

Wow, right? A college hockey season spans nearly two full semesters. How do any of these guys ever manage to graduate?

Last Week

Penn State nailed it's first conference road win. It came, symmetrically, against Michigan, who was kind enough to also help Penn State out with its first conference home win. Such nice guys, those Wolverines. The unfortunate part, though, is that 20 years from now, when some PSU noob looks back at the record books, he/she will think, 'gee, Michigan must have really sucked that year, to lose to PSU twice when PSU still wet behind its ears in D1 hockey'. And that's unfortunate because Michigan is was a top 10 team. (trolllolololol).

Up Next: at #2 Minnesota Golden Gophers

When: Friday (tonight) at 9pm ET on BTN; and Saturday at 7pm ET on NBC Sports Network

Where: fabled Mariucci Arena

Video: Yes. We're on BTN tonight, and NBCSN tomorrow night.

The Lowdown: So, it's Goldy again. And I know what you, the PSU fan, are thinking. You're thinking, 'hey, we played these guys really close at Pegula - both nights. And we probably skated well enough to win the second game, if we could have gotten a puck or two past Wilcox. We're a much improved team since those games, and we've built at least a little confidence, coming off a big road win at Michigan'.

That's all well and good, but....this is Mariucci Arena. It's a special barn. It's the Gophers - a really good squad. It's on the road, where, until last week, we've generally played like hot garbage. And, most importantly, it's the big sheet. The Olympic one. "That's your big boy," as Seinfeld may explain it, if the ice was a Drake's coffee cake. Bigger ice favors the faster, more skilled team, particularly if they have playmakers, and play-making defensemen. Guess who that best describes.

But hey - it's just hockey. Play the dots not the boards this week. Skate hard, forecheck, and backcheck. Get a few good bounces of the puck, force a couple of turnovers in their end, and you never know what might happen. Maybe we hand Goldy their second home loss this year. Let's go, boys!