In a bold move that will launch Tiger Hockey into a new era two years from now, Colorado College jointly announced with five other high-profile programs on July 13 that it will become a founding member of the National Collegiate Hockey Conference starting with the 2013–14 season.

Also aligning to form the NCHC are the:

• University of Denver;
• Miami University;
• University of Minnesota Duluth;
• University of Nebraska Omaha; and
• University of North Dakota.

“We support our program in a manner consistent with the top programs in the country,” said Ken Ralph, director of athletics, “and we are thrilled to be able to launch a league that will set the standard for excellence nationwide.”

All six teams earned bids to the NCAA tournament last spring, when Minnesota Duluth claimed its first national championship. Of the six, only Miami is not currently a member of the Western Collegiate Hockey Association.

Motivation to create the NCHC followed announcements of other conference realignments affecting the future landscape of college hockey. Earlier in the year, two schools (Minnesota and Wisconsin) from the WCHA and three (Michigan, Michigan State, and Ohio State) from the Central Collegiate Hockey Association announced that they would join the new program atPenn State in starting a Big Ten hockey conference in 2013–14.

Colorado College also helped found the original WCHA in 1951.