Here's the Gophers' schedule next season, so you can plan your life.

I've added comments because that's what blogs are supposed to do: Provide insight.

The Gophers will play three of the 11 other WCHA teams in two series: Wisconsin, Minnesota Duluth and Michigan Tech. One two-game series will be at home, the other away. Minnesota  will play the other eight teams in one series. That's a total of 28 WCHA games, same as before.

The Gophers also will play six non-conference games, two to open the season against Massachusetts on Oct. 8-9 at Mariucci. The other four non-conference opponents will be Michigan State and Michigan in the College Hockey Showcase in late November, and Union and Ferris State in the Dodge Holiday Classic. All four of those games are ar Mariucci.

Filling out the schedule will be exhibitions against British Columbia on Oct. 3 and the U.S. under-18 team on Jan.

One obvious difference this season is that those wacky Sunday games seem to be almost gone. Have only one so far, could be two. Also there is no game at Target Center because of scheduling problems.

Home and home series with Minnesota State Mankato and St. Cloud State are also history. Gophers play two games in Mankato, don't play Mavericks at Mariucci Arena. St. Cloud State plays two at Mariucci. Why the change? Possibly to make sure all WCHA teams have the same number of home and road WCHA games.


Oct. 3, British Columbia ... BC has become Gophers' annual opponent in preseason exhibition game. But game gives few clues to what is ahead. Remember last year BC coach was singing U's praises for being such sharp-shooters. Scoring was a problem most of season for Gophers

Oct. 8-9, Massachusetts, two 7 pm Fri., Sat. games

Oct. 15-16, Nebraska Omaha ... two 7 p.m. games, Fri. Sat., Gophers' first WCHA series of season ... UNO plays Clarkson and RIT weekend before at home ... Dean Blais is Mavs' coach, former Gophers recruit Ryan Walters, who U drove off, will be in UNO lineup as freshman

Oct. 22-23, St. Cloud State ... two 7 pm Fri., Sat. games ... second game might be moved to Sun., depending on what time Gophers-Penn State football game is on Sat. at TCF Bank Stadium

Oct. 29-30, at Colorado College, 8:30 Fri., 8 pm Sat. on Halloween weekend

Nov. 5-6, Wisconsin ... two 7 pm Fri., Sat. games

Nov. 12-13, open dates

Nov. 19-20, at Michigan Tech ... two 6 p.m. Fri., Sat. games

Nov. 26, 28, College Hockey Showcase, annual series in which Wisconsin and Gophers flop opponents Fri. and Sun.

First game, Michigan State, 7 pm

Second game, Michigan ... scheduled for Sun. to avoid conflict with Gophers-Iowa football game on Sat, at TCF Bank Stadium

Dec. 3-4, at Minnesota State Mankato ... Fri., Sat. games, no home and home weekend series this season

Dec. 10-11, Minnesota Duluth ... two 7 p.m. games, Fri., Sat., play Bulldogs in two series

Dec. 31, Dodge Holiday Classic,  Union, 6 pm ... fourth team is Bemidji State, pairing predetermined so U, BSU don't play

Jan. 1, Dodge Holiday Classic, Ferris State, 7 pm

Jan. 7, U.S. under-18 national team, 7 pm ... exhibition game

Jan. 14-15, at North Dakota ... 7:30 pm Fri., 7 pm Sat. games.

Jan. 21-22, open dates

Jan. 28-29, Alaska Anchorage ... two 7 pm Fri., Sat. games

Feb. 4-5, at Minnesota Duluth, two 7 pm Fri., Sat. games

Feb. 11-12, Denver ... two 7 pm Fri., Sat. games

Feb. 18-19, at Wisconsin ... two 7 pm games on Fri. Sat., Badgers are U's scheduling partner, so always play them in two series

Feb. 25-26, Michigan Tech ... two 7 pm Fri., Sat,. games

Mar. 4-5, at Bemidji State ...  7:30 pm Fri., 7 pm Sat. games, last weekend of WCHA regular-season play

Mar. 11-13, first round of WCHA playoffs, Fri. thru Sun.

Mar. 17-19, Final Five at Xcel Energy Center, six teams, five games from Thurs. to Sat.

Mar. 25-27, NCAA regionals, four sites, Fri. thru Sun.

April 7, 9, Frozen Four at Xcel, semifinals Thurs., championship Sat.