Penn State Hockey: Six Nittany Lions Headed To NHL Development Camps
Penn State's season may still be a long way off, but six Nittany Lions are working on their game at the highest level.
As the NHL offseason moves forward, several teams will be taking a look at a handful of Penn State skaters at their respective developmental camps.
So far the announced rosters include the following Nittany Lions.
Casey Bailey: Calgary Flames
Patrick Koudys: Washington Capitals*
Zach Saar: Washington Capitals
Matthew Skoff: San Jose Sharks
Eric Scheid: Minnesota Wild
Eamon McAdam: New York Islanders*
*Drafted by team
For Koudys and McAdam this will serves as a good chance to work with their respective franchises. McAdam is the only Penn State player to have been drafted while at Penn State. A total of four Nittany Lions have ties to NHL teams. Penn State forward Max Gardiner was drafted several years ago by the St Louis Blues but was not listed on the team's developmental roster as of Monday afternoon. Freshman Mike Williamson was drafted by the Vancouver Canucks but is not listed on their camp roster either.
Overall the budding relationship between the NHL and Penn State can only be a good thing for the growth of the individual players and program as a whole. While the NHL does not draft the majority of its talent from the college ranks (unlike most major sports), that may shift more toward an equal balance as college hockey continues to grow in popularity and skill.
If nothing else, as the Nittany Lion players get more work with professional teams, the better off Penn State will be as the program looks to grow in a second full year of Division I and Big Ten play.