action:article | category:SPORTS22 | adString:SPORTS22 | zoneID:40

Home » Sports » College Sports

March 27. 2013 8:57PM

Retired BU coach Jack Parker likes UMass Lowell's chances

MANCHESTER - Jack Parker will be in town Friday for the opening round of the NCAA Northeast Regional hockey tournament at the Verizon Wireless Arena. The trip from Boston to Manchester is certainly a familiar one for him, but it won't be like any he has taken before.

This will be the first time Parker walks into the building as a fan.

Parker recently stepped down after 40 years as coach at Boston University. His Terriers won this regional in 2009 and went on to win the NCAA title that year, Parker's third and final national championship.

Parker is uniquely qualified to handicap the four-team regional since his team played three of the four participants: the University of New Hampshire, the University of Denver and UMass Lowell. The Terriers lost seven of eight games against those teams, dropping their only meeting with Denver, all four against Lowell (including a 1-0 loss in the championship game of the Hockey East tournament) and two of three to UNH.

"We had trouble with all of them, that's for sure," Parker said. "They were all impressive teams to me."

Asked to pick a favorite, Parker didn't hesitate.

"Lowell," Parker said. "They're the best in all phases of the game. And they've been very consistent for a long period."

The Pioneers of Denver had an up-and-down season and were certainly down before they faced the Terriers at home on December 29. Denver's 6-0 win that night snapped an eight-game winless streak and was the first of four straight wins that steadied their season.

"We got them started," Parker said. "I was very impressed with their size and their thoroughness."

Still, Parker gives second-seeded UNH the edge over No. 3 Denver in Friday's early game at the Verizon (6 p.m., ESPNU).

"(The Wildcats) have huge advantage playing that rink," Parker said.

He thinks top-seeded Lowell got a bad break drawing No. 4 Wisconsin in Friday's second semifinal.

"It's a really bad draw for Lowell," Parker said. "If Lowell is the hottest team in the nation, Wisconsin might be the second hottest."

Parker will watch the games Friday not looking to see what he can incorporate for his team next year, but only to root for the two teams representing Hockey East -- and, in particular, his old friend Dick Umile, the UNH coach.

"He's a great coach and a great friend, and he's been a great coach for a long time," Parker said. "I hope Dick wins a national championship."

Parker is keenly aware of the scrutiny Umile has faced due to not having won an NCAA title during his 23 years coaching the Wildcats. Umile joined Parker earlier this year as one of just eight Division I coaches to win 500 games at one school. But, unlike Parker, Umile is still searching for that elusive national championship.

"If you're only measured by that, that's a tough measurement," Parker said. "I'll be there rooting for Dickie."


 NH Sports Angle Ľ more
Links to news and happenings around the world of sports with a Granite State connection, updated daily.

NASCAR: Logano interview makes UNH writerís dream come true

Nashua's Fayne moves from Devils to Oilers

Granite State Pro Stock Series to make debut at Lee Speedway

BRIAN McCLOSKEY

Ex-UNH hockey coach indicted on four charges

Growing up a hazard to golf: Real world claims talent from NHGA

Concord man wins National Javelin Championship at 2014 USA Track & Field Masters Championship

Conway's Locke happy with first half, believes best yet to come for Pirates

Court filing details prosecution's perjury allegations against Aaron Hernandez girlfriend

Is N.H. really home to longest mini golf hole on the planet?

Professional hockey coming to Berlin

van Riemsdyk setting high expectations for pro career

Life changes in an instant: Travis Roy shares story at Frank Monahan Foundation event

Improvements help, but traffic still a problem on race weekend in and around Loudon

Itís show time in Chicago for Dartmouthís Hendricks

State sells Windham golf course site for $3.06M

Ex-minor leaguers sue MLB over low salaries

$14M to beaten Giants fan returns security focus

Matt Bonner and brother bring rock show back to Redhook

GM: Twin State Speedway progressing with revival

Foot golf arrives on Seacoast

New Hampshire's Burns gets more than he could ever ask for

Pro runner's yoga class will raise money for clean Kenyan water

Menard wrecks as New Hampshire testing concludes

Lawyers try to bar Patriots from paying Hernandez $3.2M bonus

Pease Golf Course celebrates opening of lower nine holes

MORE

 New Hampshire Events Calendar
    

   Ľ SHARE EVENTS FOR PUBLICATION, IT'S FREE!

Upcoming Events

 New Hampshire Business Directory

  

   Ľ ADD YOUR BUSINESS TODAY!