College Hockey Rankings: Boston College Moves To No. 1, Denver Pioneers Walk To No. 3

ST. PAUL, MN - APRIL 07: : Kenny Reiter #35 of the Minnesota Duluth Bulldogs stops a shot by the Notre Dame Fighting Irish during semifinals of the 2011 NCAA Men's Frozen Four on April 7, 2011 at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minnesota. The Minnesota Duluth Bulldogs defeated the Notre Dame Fighting Irish 4-3. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

The college hockey season is sure to be an exciting one. We already have a new No. 1 team after the first week of play.

The 2011-12 college hockey season kicked off for most teams over the weekend, and in the latest USCHO Top 20 poll there is a new No. 1 team. The Boston College Eagles jumped from No. 5 to the top of the poll, receiving 36 first-place votes. The Eagles captured the 2011 Ice Breaker Tournament championship by defeating the Michigan St. Spartans and the North Dakota Fighting Sioux.

The former No. 1 team, the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, split a weekend series against the defending Frozen Four champion Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs. They lost the opening game, 4-3, before coming back for a 5-3 victory on Saturday. They received seven first-place votes and slipped to No. 2.

The Denver Pioneers started the season as the No. 4 team and moved to No. 3 without having played a regular season game yet. The Pioneers start their season this weekend with a trip to Massachusetts for games against Boston College and Boston University. North Dakota fell from No. 3 to No. 6. The Colorado College stayed at No. 7, as their season has yet to start.

Air Force went 0-2 in the Ice Breaker Tournament by giving up two third-period leads, but they received 14 votes in the latest poll.

Here is the current Top 20:

Team Prev.
1 Boston College (36) 5
2 Notre Dame (7) 1
3 Denver (2) 4
4 Michigan 6
5 Miami (1) 2
6 North Dakota 3
7 Colorado College 7
8 Boston University (3) 10
9 Minnesota-Duluth 8
10 Yale (1) 9
11 Union 11
12 Western Michigan 13
13 Merrimack 15
14 Minnesota 19
15 New Hampshire 12
16 Nebraska-Omaha 14
17 Maine 16
18 Wisconsin 17
19 Cornell 20
20 Rensselaer 18

Others receiving votes: Colgate 71, Ferris State 60, Dartmouth 31, Northern Michigan 29, Bemidji State 24, St. Cloud State 23, Alaska 18, Air Force 14, Alaska-Anchorage 13, Rochester Institute of Technology 8, Harvard 6, Lake Superior 6, Michigan State 5, Massachusetts 3, Quinnipiac 3, Minnesota State 2, Northeastern 2, Ohio State 2.

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