MADISON (WKOW) -- The Badger men's hockey team enters the 2013-14 season a member of the new Big Ten hockey conference. A big change for a program who had been a part of the WCHA for the previous 44 seasons, but this year much stays the same. The Badgers return 16 upperclassmen, 81% of its goal production is back and the end goal remains the same, national championship or bust.
For a program with six national titles to its name, winning it all is always the goal, but this season the Badgers feel that goal is much more attainable. The Badgers finished last season on a tear, going 21-6-5 in their final 32 games en route to an NCAA Tournament berth. For all but one of the current Badgers, that was their first experience playing in the national tournament, and according to Michael Mersch, that experience was invaluable.
"We learned how to win," Mersch said. "I think that's the biggest thing we can take from last season moving forward."
"We have a great team and we know it," sophomore forward Nic Kerdiles said. "We've got to make the best out of it and I think we've got the chance to win a national championship this year."