Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Philadelphia held out of Frozen Four running until 2019

Division I college hockey's championship rounds won't be coming back to Philadelphia any time soon, but that doesn't mean the Wells Fargo Center (or whatever it will be called five or more years from now) won't play host to another Frozen Four in the near future.

On Wednesday, the NCAA announced that Boston, Tampa, Chicago and St. Paul will be the sites of the 2015-18 Frozen Fours.

If you think Tampa is a curious choice, you're correct. The Tampa Bay Times Forum hosted for the first time in 2012 as Boston College bested Ferris State, and will get another crack four years later. Unless there is a groundswell for the college game in the southern latitudes, it's expected that the University of Alabama-Huntsville, some 636 miles away, will be the host program.

Hit the link for the copious Twitter reaction to having another premier college hockey tournament located in college football territory.

Boston last held a Frozen Four in 2004, when Denver took home its first of its recent back-to-back titles against Maine, while Chicago and United Center will be a first-time city in 2017 and in '18 St. Paul (Xcel Energy Center) will host for the first time since Minnesota-Duluth topped Michigan in 2011.

The NCAA also revealed regional sites for next year's tournament: the East Regional will be in Providence, the Northeast in Manchester, New Hampshire, Midwest in South Bend, Ind. and the West in Fargo, North Dakota.

Although the Division I men's hockey championship has been contested since 1948, the term "Frozen Four" was not officially used until the 1999 event in Anaheim which was hosted by Alaska-Anchorage.

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