Wisconsin ready for Sunday's OfficeMax Hockey City Classic Practice day in the books, Badgers ready for game against Minnesota outdoors at Soldier Field
Feb. 17, 2013
CHICAGO -- They do not get old. Outdoor games, that is. At least not for the student-athletes. You could tell that from all the smiles and sounds of joy coming from the Wisconsin men's hockey team on Saturday during its practice outdoors on the ice at Soldier Field. The field is home to the NFL's Chicago Bears.
The eighteenth-ranked Badgers (12-10-7, 9-7-7 WCHA) hit the ice at the same time on Saturday - 3:30 p.m. - that they will today when they take on No. 2 Minnesota (20-5-4, 12-5-4 WCHA) in the OfficeMax Hockey City Classic. For Wisconsin, it will mark the third outdoor hockey game they've played since they skated at Lambeau Field, home of the NFL's Green Bay Packers, in the Frozen Tundra Hockey Classic in 2006.
While the game on the Frozen Tundra against Ohio State, and the game in 2010 at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison, Wis., against Michigan were victories for the Badgers, they didn't carry the same importance as a conference game as this one does.
The Badgers sit tied for sixth in the WCHA standings with five games remaining in their league schedule, providing urgency with regards to home ice hopes and NCAA aspirations.
Wisconsin will look to exact some revenge against Minnesota. The Badgers dropped a 3-2 decision to the Gophers on Friday at the Kohl Center, allowing three power-play goals to what is now the nation's top power-play unit. Those goals proved too much to overcome.
The weather looks to be perfect for such an occasion. A forecast with a high of 31 degrees, and mostly sunny skies in Chicago on Sunday set ups well for the event.
The Badgers' game is the second game of a doubleheader as No. 3 Miami takes on 12th-ranked Notre Dame in the opening contest at noon.
If you can't make it to the stadium, the Wisconsin game airs live on BTN. The first game airs live on Fox Sports Detroit.