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Both rosters are whole again
Gophers at a glance: No. 1 Minnesota (10-0, 8-0 Big Ten) opened the second half of the season against Arizona State earlier this week and remained undefeated. A trip to border rival Wisconsin will bring an even stronger lineup on the ice, with the return of defensemen Brock Faber, Jackson LaCombe and Ryan Johnson from the World Junior Championship after a gold medal run with Team USA. It also could mark the debut of a new Gophers player, forward Colin Schmidt, who joined the team during the holiday break after playing in 32 games as a freshman at Union last season.
Badgers at a glance: No. 12 Wisconsin (5-5, 5-3) struggled to maintain a full-strength roster in the first half of the season, with injuries, positive COVID-19 tests and the World Junior Championship depleting the squad. But when they open their second act against the Gophers, the Badgers should be back to their most complete roster since the season opener in November. Some notable returnees are forwards Cole Caufield and Dylan Holloway from the World Juniors; forwards Roman Ahcan, Tarek Baker and Dominick Mersch from COVID-19; and forward Ty Pelton-Byce from injury.