Even though the official start of the college hockey season isn't until October, the University of North Dakota men's program is already gearing up for another run at a national title. The work from returning members on the roster never really stopped once the 2017-18 season concluded in mid-March -- after all, there really is no offseason in collegiate sports -- nor did it slow down for Brad Berry and the coaching staff, who have hit the recruiting trail hard and been rewarded with a number of highly-touted commits that will be arriving in Grand Forks in the years to come.
It's the effort the staff put forth in years past, however, that will yield the most immediate fruit.
Last month, Coach Berry announced the arrival of seven incoming freshmen for the 2018-19 season, some of whom had signed on to play for UND as many as three or four years previous. Of that group, four were selected in last week's NHL Draft, including Senators 1st Round selection Jacob Bernard-Docker, who became the 15th UND player drafted in the opening round since 2000.
Here's the list of UND freshmen set to come to campus for this upcoming season:
UND Class of 2018
Jacob Bernard-Docker | 6-0, 171, DEF | Hometown: Canmore, Alberta | Prev. Team: Okotoks (OJHL) | Draft Status: 2018 1st RD, 26th Overall - Ottawa
Gavin Hain | 6-0, 196, FWD | Hometown: Grand Rapids, Minnesota | Prev. Team: NTDP U-18s (USHL) | Draft Status: 2018 6th RD, 178th Overall - Philadelphia
Jackson Keane | 5-10, 170, FWD | Hometown: Winnipeg, Manitoba | Prev. Team: Penticton (BCHL) | Draft Status: Undrafted
Adam Scheel | 6-4, 185, G | Hometown: Lakewood, Ohio | Prev. Team: Penticton (BCHL) | Draft Status: Undrafted
Mark Senden* | 6-0, 186, FWD | Hometown: Medina, Minnesota | Prev. Team: Fargo (USHL) | Draft Status: Undrafted
Jonny Tychonick | 6-0, 175, DEF | Hometown: Calgary, Alberta | Prev. Team: Penticton (BCHL) | Draft Status: 2018 2nd RD, 48th Overall - Ottawa
Jasper Weatherby | 6-3, 215, FWD | Hometown: Lummi Island, Washington | Prev. Team: Wenchee (BCHL) | Draft Status: 2018 4th RD, 102nd Overall - San Jose
*Senden hasn't officially been announced as a member of this class, but all signs point to him taking the place of former Okotoks Oilers captain Carter Huber, who chose not to attend college this year because of a family situation
The always on-point Brad Schlossman of the Grand Forks Herald joined me on the latest edition of the MidcoSN Podcast to discuss the seven newcomers, what they bring to the table and how they might fit in to the North Dakota set-up this fall. Listen to the full interview below or on I-Tunes, Soundcloud or wherever you get your podcasts!