Bemidji State's Instant Impact entry features Beaver freshman Brad Robbins.
Joey Benik, SCSU Austin Farley, UMD
Blake Tatchell, UAA Adam Wilcox, UM
Hunter Fejes, CC Juhjar Khaira, MTU
Nic Kerdiles, UW
Anthony Stolarz, UNO
Teddy Blueger, MSU
Brad Robbins, F, Bemidji State
Vitals: 5' 7" - 169 lbs - 8/3/1991
Hometown: Murrieta, CA
Previous Team: Sioux City Musketeers (USHL)
Last season, Bemidji State enjoyed a modest improvement in the standings in what was just their second season in the WCHA. They jumped up a couple of spots in the standings (11th to 9th) while picking up a few more conference victories along the way. The Beavers roll into the 2012-13 season with the intention of building upon those improvements as they return a relatively experienced squad, having lost just six players from a season ago. They return all but one regular from their defensive rotation (Brad Hunt), while sophomore Andrew Walsh and freshman Fabian Sivnert will battle for playing time in the crease with Dan Bakala lost to graduation. Leading scorer Jordan George returns for his senior season, and all but one of BSU's top six point producing forwards (Shea Walters) will be back in the fold this fall.
The experience the Beavers return, however, does not diminish the fact that only Alaska-Anchorage scored fewer goals among WCHA teams in 2011-12. In order to maintain the progress achieved a year ago, Bemidji State will need some of their new faces to step in and contribute offensively, and incoming freshman Brad Robbins just might be one such contributor.
Robbins will join the Beavers following a successful prep and junior career during which he displayed steady improvements. In 2009-10 he enjoyed a strong season with the Shattuck-St. Mary's prep team, producing 54 points (21G, 33A) in 55 games. He began the following season with the Penticton Vees of the BCHL (6G, 8A in 26 games) before joining the USHL's Sioux City Musketeers for the duration of 2010-11. Despite playing just a partial season with the Musketeers, he finished among the team's top five scorers by registering 34 points (13G, 21A) in 42 games. In 2011-12, Robbins wrapped up his pre-collegiate career by leading the Musketeers in goals, assists, and points by way of a 52 point (25G, 27A) season.
Sioux City head coach Brett Larson described Robbins as "a shooter. He's got a great release and can find areas to create a scoring opportunity. This is by far his biggest strength." Larson went on to say that Robbins "is a powerplay guy. If he's in the right spot on the powerplay he will be very productive and will score a lot of points." In terms of Robbins' ability to adapt to the speed and physicality of WCHA hockey, Larson stated that "this will be his biggest challenge. Brad's a good skater and will be able to keep up with the pace, but he will need to get use to the physical part of the game in order to contribute." Once he makes this adjustment, expect the talented winger to become a key component in the Beaver attack.