The Notre Dame Fighting Irish hockey team will open up the Big Ten Tournament at home in Compton Family Ice Arena against the Michigan State Spartans. The Irish needed a big weekend against the Michigan Wolverines and a little help, and they had a mostly big weekend against the Michigan Wolverines and a little help. Six points would have put them in 2nd place with the tie-breakers, but instead they ended up as the 4 seed.
Which is fine — at least until it’s time to take on the Minnesota Gophers.
ROSEMONT, Ill. – The Big Ten Conference released on Saturday the bracket for the 2023 Big Ten Hockey Tournament, a three-weekend event that will have all games taking place on the campus of the higher-seeded teams.
Big Ten Champion Minnesota (25-8-1) has earned the No. 1 seed for a second straight year and will receive an opening round bye. The tournament begins March 3-5 with three best-of-three quarterfinal series. No. 2 seed Michigan (20-11-3) will host No. 7 seed Wisconsin (13-21-0), No. 3 seed Ohio State (18-13-3) will entertain No. 6 seed Penn State (20-13-1) and No. 4 seed Notre Dame (15-14-5) will host No. 5 seed Michigan State (16-16-2). Michigan State and Penn State tied for fifth place, however the Spartans claimed the fifth seed based on its head-to-head record against the Nittany Lions.
As the top-seeded team, Minnesota will have a bye to the single-elimination semifinals, which are scheduled for March 11. The highest-seeded team advancing from the quarterfinals will host the second-highest advancing team, while the lowest-seeded advancing team will play at Minnesota.
The highest-seeded team remaining after the semifinals will host the championship game on Saturday, March 18.
The Michigan State-Notre Dame series will air on FS2 while the other quarterfinal series will be available on B1G+. The semifinals and championship game will be carried by Big Ten Network and on the FOX Sports App.
The tournament champion will receive the conference’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
2023 BIG TEN HOCKEY TOURNAMENT QUARTERFINALS
March 3-5 | Best-of-three series
#7 WISCONSIN at #2 MICHIGAN
Game 1: Friday, March 3 - 7 p.m. on B1G+
Game 2: Saturday, March 4 - 7 p.m. on B1G+
Game 3: Sunday, March 5 (if necessary) - 7 p.m. on B1G+
#6 PENN STATE at #3 OHIO STATE
Game 1: Friday, March 3 - TBA on B1G+
Game 2: Saturday, March 4 - TBA on B1G+
Game 3: Sunday, March 5 (if necessary) - TBA on B1G+
#5 MICHIGAN STATE AT #4 NOTRE DAME
Game 1: Friday, March 3 – 7 p.m. ET on FS2
Game 2: Saturday, March 4 – 4:30 p.m. ET on FS2
Game 3: Sunday, March 5 (if necessary) – 6 p.m. ET on FS2
UPDATED PAIRWISE RANKINGS
Notre Dame rose to #13 in the Pairwise rankings. It’s not great, but they are still very much in position to make the NCAA Tournament, and a chance to return to the Frozen Four.