After playing a huge role in leading the Notre Dame Fighting Irish hockey team to the Frozen Four, forward Anders Bjork has decided to forego his senior year in 2017-2018 to get a jump-start on his professional career.
Notre Dame hockey forward Anders Bjork will not return for his senior year as he signs a 3-year entry level contract with the Boston Bruins— Angelo Di Carlo (@angdicarlowndu) May 30, 2017
The 20-year-old from Mequon, Wisconsin agreed to that 3-year entry level deal with the Bruins after having been drafted by the team in the 5th round in the 2014 NHL Draft. He was a force for Notre Dame this past season, putting up a 21-31-52 line in 39 games.
According to the Boston Globe, Bjork may not need any time in the minors, either, as it’s been suggested he will slide right in to the Bruins’ second line alongside David Krejci next season.
Notre Dame fans will certainly miss watching Bjork play in a gold helmet, but also have to be excited to see another Irish hockey player making inroads into the NHL.
BONZIE Getting Some Early Love for Next Season
BONZIE COLSON had an incredible junior season in 2016-2017, earning All-ACC honors and making the AP All-American 3rd Team. So, it’s not a surprise, in a level of basketball where the best players rarely stay longer than a year or two, that COLSON is getting a lot of hype as one of the best players in the country for his senior season.
Back in early May, Sports Illustrated published this early look at Notre Dame (who they ranked 12th in their too-early preseason rankings), and specifically at BONZIE being poised to finish a fantastic career with one last ride at leading ND to the promised land.
Now, ESPN’s John Gasaway has put out his rankings of the top 25 players for next season, and ranks BONZIE 3rd in the country, only behind Duke’s Grayson Allen and Missouri’s incoming freshman one-and-done superstar Michael Porter, Jr.
If you’re at all a fan of Notre Dame hoops, this long-deserved hype for BONZIE feels great, and has to make you excited for next season.
Speaking of Next Basketball Season
CBS Sports put out their own updated preseason rankings late last week, and just like SI, they’ve got Notre Dame just outside the top 10.
Ignoring that Brey’s teams have always seemed to end up much better when no one believes in them than when they have huge preseason expectations (looking at you, 2008-2009 team), can we just sit and bask in the following quote from the article, and how if you heard it at this time two years ago, you would have laughed your ass off?
So the losses of V.J. Beachem and Steve Vasturia will hurt. But Matt Farrell and Bonzie Colson should comprise one of the top returning inside-outside duos in the country.
The incredulity at that statement would mostly come from Farrell being mentioned as part of the best duos in the country. But even so, BONZIE developing into what he has become, and the possibility of those two making up for the loss of a sophomore starter on the best ND hoops team in 30 years and a sharpshooter with lots of athletic ability (what we knew about Beachem in 2015), it’s absolutely amazing to think about at this point in time.
Thank you, Mike Brey, for giving us teams that are truly a joy to watch.
A Couple Other Things
- I like the premise of this story from SB Nation a lot - which college football coaches you shouldn’t fight
- In case we haven’t made it clear, Troy Pride Jr. is fast as hell
- If you haven’t heard it, listen to last week’s Pardon My Take podcast with Jim Harbaugh. It’s spectacular, and my man-coach-crush continues...