As the NCAA season is starting to find its legs it's important to keep track of how some of the Blackhawks' prospects are faring. Oliver Moore (2023 #19) and Sam Rinzel (2022 #25) are both playing for the Minnesota Golden Gophers this year as freshman.
Stats-wise it's a so far so good for both as Moore has 6 points (1G, 5A) in as many games for another stacked forward roster for the Gophers. With 8 drafted forwards on the team, Moore is sticking out as an all situations speed option down the middle. With Jimmy Snuggerud, Brody Lamb, Jaxon Nelson, and Aaron Huglen lighting the lamp in the early going it has been Moore's passing that has stood out.
Rinzel leads all defenseman on Minnesota with 3 points and 3 helpers on the young season amongst a team with 5 drafted blue liners. Future Washington Capital Ryan Chesley is also on the team and should serve as a good mentor to Rinzel as he has alot of experience (1 year in the NCAA as well as 13 games at the World Juniors for team USA). Both players should produce this season, for Rinzel I'm watching the stat sheet for PIM and how they were taken by the young Minnesota native.
Frank Nazar on the other end (2022 #13) is at the University of Michigan and is a little behind on the scoring chart for the Wolverines. With 4 points in 7 games, Nazar ranks 10th on the team in points (McGroarty has 13 points for reference). The speed has shown through and he has had some good outings mixed in with some matchups that took away his speed option.
The seaosn is young for all 3 Big Ten skaters, an update will be provided as the season moves along. So far Blackhawks fans should be encouraged as the conference they play in is full of top end competition that should see these former 1st round talents be placed in situations they can learn from and get better from moving forward.