Big Ten Hockey announced its Stars of the Week today. For the first time in several weeks the list doesn't contain a Buckeye. (Though the team did sort of get posterized in the release's header image.)
However, another list was recently released, the long list for the NCAA’s Hobey Baker Award. That one does include a member of the Scarlet and Gray. Nick Schilkey represents Ohio State in the fan voting portion of the Hobey Baker selection process.
The fan vote counts for one percent of the total ballot in each stage of the award selection. Fans can vote here for the player they think most deserving of the honor, which rewards strength of character, outstanding skill in all aspects of the game, scholastic achievement, and sportsmanship. It is essentially college hockey's Heisman.
This is why you might consider Schilkey worthy of your vote. The senior forward and team captain has led the Buckeyes to a 12-6-6 record and a consistent presence in the national rankings. Under Schilkey’s leadership the Bucks are on pace for one of their best seasons in years. They are also in contention for their first NCAA tournament berth since 2009. These are unlikely achievements for a captain of wishy-washy character.
Schilkey owns 17 goals and eight assists for 28 total points on the season. He still possesses the team’s second highest point total and is tied for fourth nationally in goals scored, even after four games on the bench. The Marysville, Michigan native is a key figure in both aspects of the Bucks’ special teams, though he is particularly notable on the power play where he has racked up nine man-advantage goals. In short, Ohio State relies on Schilkey in all situations and in all situations Schilkey proves worthy of that trust.
We've touched on character and skill which leaves us with scholastic achievements and sportsmanship. Schilkey is a three time OSU Scholar Athlete, a two time Academic All-Big Ten selection and a Big Ten Distinguished Scholar. And how is this for sportsmanship? He has been penalized a whopping 18 times…in his entire four year career.
The initial phase of Hobey Baker Award fan voting is open now and continues through March 5. Once the field has been narrowed to its top ten candidates, a second fan voting period occurs from March 15-26.