NCAA Coaches on Select 2014 Draftees

Anthony Angello
Committed to Cornell | 5th rd., PIT
Head coach Mike Schafer: “Anthony is a big power forward with a knack for scoring. Anthony needs time to grow into his body and get stronger, and having four years in college to be able to physically mature will help his development and get him ready for the next level.”

Louie Belpedio
Committed to Miami | 3rd rd., MIN
Head coach Enrico Blasi: “There’s not anything he doesn’t do well. He’s got a pretty good offensive knack, although he probably isn’t the most offensive defenseman out there. He’s not overly physical, but he can play that way when he wants to. He’s pretty responsible defensively, but not afraid to jump in the play. Bottom line is he’s a great person, a great kid, who will fit our culture perfectly. Our job will be to help him build on all those skills he has right now, both emotionally and physically, so he can eventually make that transition, hopefully to the NHL.”

Tyler Bird
Committed to Brown | 5th rd., CBJ
Head coach Brendan Whittet: “He’s a big, strong, powerful kid who has gotten better and better. He plays hard in the gritty areas of the ice. He’s still a young kid with a lot of room for growth, which is exciting because he can really develop into a power forward. He needs to develop the consistency to play that role and that’s what we’re here to help him do. He’s been on a huge upward swing and we look forward to that continuing.”

Ryan Collins
Committed to Minnesota | 2nd rd., CBJ
Head coach Don Lucia: “Ryan is a player with a tremendous amount of potential. At 6-5, you’re looking at someone who in three or four years could be playing at 225 pounds. He should develop into a top-notch defensive defenseman.”

Thatcher Demko
Boston College rising sophomore | 2nd rd., VAN
Head coach Jerry York: “He’s got all the qualities that make up a prototypical NHL goaltender: size, athleticism and mental makeup. He’s a projected No. 1 goaltender in the NHL and we saw why with his performance as a freshman.”

Alec Dillon
Committed to Rensselaer (RPI) | 5th rd., LA
Head coach Seth Appert: “He’s got great size and a great goalie build at 6’5” with lanky arms. We’ve tracked him for a long time and love his development. He’s a quiet competitor and an intelligent goaltender. With goaltending it’s not about a race to see where you are in your early 20s – it’s a race to be the best you can be at 25 to 27. He’ll get a lot of work, both in the weight room and in goalie sessions, and I know a lot of teams were excited about his chances for development over the next several years.”

Jack Dougherty
Committed to Wisconsin | 2nd rd., NSH
Head coach Mike Eaves: “Jack has a pretty unique set of skills. He sees the ice well and he’s very mobile, so he can get to spaces to make plays. Like most young freshmen his adaptation to the speed and strength of our game will dictate what type of impact he has. I don’t think he’ll have any trouble with the speed, and the chance to train this summer on campus will help him on the strength side.”

Shane Eiserman
Committed to New Hampshire | 4th rd., OTT
Head coach Dick Umile: “Shane is someone who brings a lot to the table: he’s big, strong, a power forward type. He played for the national team so he has experience playing bigger, stronger guys at the college level and on big stages. Coming in we expect he’ll pay dividends right away. We’ve had a few guys from the national program, like James van Riemsdyk, and they have a good background coming in.”

Jared Fiegl
Committed to Cornell | 7th rd., ARI
Head coach Mike Schafer: “Jared is a hard-nosed, two-way player who can really skate. He has been a captain at every level he’s played at and plays a 200-foot game. College hockey will allow his game to grow and he exemplifies the kind of character we all in college look for in our players and leaders.”

Warren Foegele
Committed to New Hampshire | 3rd, CAR
Head coach Dick Umile: “He’s a real skilled player, a guy who can do it all for us. He’s got good size, excellent hands, and really brings a lot to the table. He was on campus recently for orientation and he’s really excited to get going. We’ve got a big class coming in and we need some immediate contributors, and we certainly expect Warren to come in and make an impact for us right away.”

Mark Friedman
Committed to Bowling Green | 3rd, PHI
Head coach Chris Bergeron: “We like everything about Mark’s game. He stayed in juniors for an extra year than we initially expected but in the end that may have been the best thing. He really grew and matured in that extra year in Waterloo. He’s prepared to come in here and make an immediate impact.

“He’s a guy who played with some elite talents as a minor midget, guys like Darnell Nurse and Max Domi, and he has high expectations for himself. He’s the first guy who we’ve recruited here that is being talked about headed into the draft. It reminds me a bit of when we recruited Andy Greene at Miami. When we got him at Miami, that was a big deal, and he was a three-year all-league player who is now in the NHL. That’s the type of opportunity that we have and we see for Mark. We’re really excited to have him.

“We think he’s a high-end player without being flashy, and that’s not a negative. He just does everything well. He’s going to improve his strength, just like every young man does, and that will help him round out his game.

“The way Mark thinks the game, he’ll play his way out of the undersized label. That won’t even be a consideration. His shot, his skating are good now, but those are things you can never be too good at. He’ll improve those because of how hard he works. With some time here, he’ll be prepared to play against men, which is what college hockey is.”

Miles Gendron
Committed to Connecticut | 3rd, OTT
Head coach Mike Cavanaugh: “Miles is an elite skater, and that’s what jumps out at people first and foremost. He recently converted from forward to defenseman and has made that transition well. He’s one we’re hoping is in the mold of a Mat Bodie or Shayne Gostisbehere. He certainly has great size at 6-2, and as his defense improves and he adds strength, he’ll have the chance to be a real impact player.”

Jack Glover
Committed to Minnesota | 3rd, WPG
Head coach Don Lucia: “Jack is a good two-way defenseman with good size, he skates well and he makes a good outlet pass. As his body matures he’ll develop physically and that’s where college hockey will be a real benefit to him.”

Brandon Hickey
Committed to Boston University | 3rd, CGY
Head coach David Quinn: “Brandon has got good size and what really sets him apart is that he’s a dynamic skater. He’s elusive with the puck and defensively he can really take away time and space. He’s got a great future at BU and beyond.”

Josh Jacobs
Committed to Michigan State | 2nd, NJ
Head coach Tom Anastos: “Josh has got a high skillset. His puck skills, awareness, size and mobility really make him a good player. He moves around the rink very well. He has the potential to really grow both the offensive and defensive sides of his game – both of which are very good now, but we’re excited to see him improve even more.”

Steve Johnson
Committed to Minnesota | 4th, LA
Head coach Don Lucia: “Steve is a great example of a young man who used junior hockey to allow his game to grow, first with a year in the NAHL and then with Omaha in the USHL. He has good size at 6-1, 185 pounds and he skates extremely well. He has that ability to jump up into the play.”

Johnathan MacLeod
Committed to Boston University | 2nd, TB
Head coach David Quinn: “He plays with an awful lot of grit and toughness. Sometimes when one part of a player’s game stands out, people miss the other things he does well, and that can be the case with Johnathan. He’s got skill, he shoots it a ton, and he skates well. He’ll continue to improve his skill, skating and consistency and will be a very good all-around defenseman.”

Sonny Milano
Committed to Boston College | 1st, CBJ
Head coach Jerry York: “His skill level is really impressive. He has that knack to make plays that you just can’t teach. He’s bigger than most people give him credit for as well, and will improve in that area. He’ll be in the weight room a lot and have a chance to add strength.”

Brandon Montour
Committed to Massachusetts | 2nd, ANA
Head coach John Micheletto: “He’s an electric player who can do great things with the puck on his stick, and without it as well. We expect that he’ll be a game-changer, as he has shown he can be in Waterloo and Caledonia before that. He’s tremendously skilled, an unbelievable athlete who has just scratched the surface of what he’s going to be as a hockey player. He’s an accomplished lacrosse player as well who would go right from hockey to lacrosse, and play lacrosse until hockey season started again. Now that he’ll be focused on a year-round strength and conditioning program and putting a bit more focus on hockey, he’ll improve even more.”

J.J. Piccinich
Committed to Boston University | 4th, TOR
Head coach David Quinn: “He’s obviously proven that he can score at the USHL level, and the way he scores goals will translate to college and eventually the next level. His skating has really improved in the last year and he’s got good hockey sense. What stands out is that burning desire to score goals. With his work ethic we know his skating will continue to improve and he’ll be a very good player for us.”

Austin Poganski
Committed to North Dakota | 4th, STL
Head coach David Hakstol: “Austin is your prototypical, straight-line power forward. He’s pretty good around the net – screens, tips, rebounds and that sort of thing, and he’s a real bull below the tops of the circles. He can carve out that exact role for us right away. As he adjusts and gets comfortable at our level he can be a very good player for us.”

Michael Prapavessis
Committed to Rensselaer (RPI) | 4th, DAL
Head coach Seth Appert: “Michael is an incredibly intelligent hockey player. His skill level speaks for itself, but the one thing that always translates as players advance to the next levels in their career is hockey intelligence, and he’s got it. He’s chosen a great route. He needs time in practice and the weight room, because he’s young and not physically mature yet. His body has room for growth. To be an elite offensive defenseman – in college or eventually the NHL – you have to have a scoring shot, and that’s something he’ll be able to work on.”

Nick Schmaltz
Committed to North Dakota | 1st, CHI
Head coach David Hakstol: “Nick is a supremely gifted and talented player who will come in and improve our overall skill level immediately. He’ll have every opportunity to contribute right away. His development will be on the physical side and improving his two-way game to become a more complete player.”

Dylan Sikura
Committed to Northeastern | 6th, CHI
Head coach Jim Madigan: “Dylan is an offensively skilled player who is smart and a real good skater. He’s a distributor who has the ability to score as well. College is appealing to him because he needs to get bigger and stronger, and the four years in school will allow him to do that. He’ll also need to round out his game and become more of a 200-foot player. His older brother is a two-year captain at Dartmouth, where he’ll be a senior, so Dylan has seen the benefits of the college game.”

Luc Snuggerud
Committed to Nebraska Omaha | 5th, CHI
Head coach Dean Blais: “Luc has great offensive ability and skates very, very well. He makes a good pass, and not just an outlet pass – he has creativity in all areas of the ice. He can make something out of nothing with his offensive ability. He skates a little bit like Nick Leddy. Skilled players, like Luc, have always had the puck. So we’ll work with him on defensive zone coverage and things like that, but he can learn that – you can’t teach what he has right now, which is a lot of raw offensive ability.”

Kelly Summers
Committed to Clarkson | 7th, OTT
Head coach Casey Jones: “We’re really excited about Kelly. He’s got a great ceiling. He had a really good junior career, particularly with his offensive production. He’s got a great offensive mind and his instincts and poise with the puck are impressive. He’s still growing and will get stronger while he’s here. He’ll have a chance to fine-tune every aspect of his game and become an even more complete defenseman.”

Jeff Taylor
Union rising sophomore | 7th, PIT
Head coach Rick Bennett: "Jeff is an offensive defenseman that uses his foot speed, mobility, and consistent puck decisions to generate scoring chances. He was a key part of our success this year as a freshman."

Devon Toews
Quinnipiac rising sophomore | 4th, NYI
Head coach Rand Pecknold: “Devon was one of the best freshman defensemen in the ECAC this year. We had lost 11 seniors from our Frozen Four team, including four of our top six defensemen, and it was a lot to ask of him to be in our top four. He did it and he had an amazing freshman season.

“His main strength is his hockey IQ and his instincts. The way he learned and adapted to our level was tremendous. Gap control is the toughest thing for young defensemen coming into Division I and he learned quickly not to let a forward get started on him.

“He’s never really trained properly, and we’re correcting that as we speak. Weight training, nutrition, the whole package – the effort is there and we’re just giving him the tools. The sky is the limit for him once that is figured out.”

Alex Tuch
Committed to Boston College | 1st, MIN
Head coach Jerry York: “Alex has all those prerequisites for a big, strong, power forward. He’s got size, strength, he skates well and he has a real powerful shot. We saw some really good improvement in his game the last two years and are excited about what he’ll bring as a freshman. He’ll get even better as he adjusts to this level and improves on his ability to make plays with the puck.”

Matt Ustaski
Committed to Wisconsin | 7th, WPG
Head coach Mike Eaves: “Matt is 6’6”, 225 pounds, so he’s got a pro body. He moves quite well for someone his size, so we’re interested to see what he brings. He’ll learn to use his size more to his advantage and with that has a chance to become a really effective player.”

Jake Walman
Committed to Providence | 3rd., STL
Head coach Nate Leaman: “First and foremost he’s a terrific kid. He’s a 6’1” defenseman with a lot of ability both offensively and defensively. I’d put him in the elite category as a skater, and he also plays the game with a lot of jam. He needs to continue to develop and at 6’1”, 180 pounds, he certainly needs to add some strength, but he’ll have that opportunity. At the same time we’ll teach him the game so that he’s ready to take that step to the next level.”

Max Willman
Committed to Brown | 5th, BUF
Head coach Brendan Whittet: “Max is a really interesting kid. He played high school on the Cape (Cape Cod) and really didn’t have any looks from Division I schools coming out of high school. We saw him early this season in a midget tournament and he stood out. He’s got offensive creativity, he’s a great skater, and he’s very slick. He’s the kind of kid you drool over a little bit for his potential. He’s going to have to understand when to drive the net, when to get it deep – stuff that all skilled players need to learn. Offensively, he thinks the game at a really high level and he’s just beginning to tap into his potential.”

© 2014 College Hockey, Inc. All Rights Reserved