Based on the preponderence of Christmas colors at the top of this week's Power Rankings, it must be a sign that everyone at INCH World Headquarters is in the holiday mood. True, candy cane-clad Miami and Cornell are mired among the tinsel gold trim of Denver and Boston College this week, but it's no gift -- the RedHawks, Pioneers, Big Red and Eagles have earned those spots. So, too, has another red-and-white club, Wisconsin, this week's big mover.
Here's how the Inside College Hockey editors and staff rank the nation's top teams:
In their last 12 CCHA matches, the RedHawks have outscored their opponents by a 36-12 margin. Miami is 9-0-3 in the league during that span.
Say this about the Pioneers: when they lose, they really get shellacked. In their five defeats this season, they've allowed a combined 26 goals.
If Cornell faces Maine in the second game at the Florida College Classic, it will be the third in a stretch of four games against ranked teams (Union, CC, Maine, UNH).
4. BOSTON COLLEGE
BC was not whistled for a single penalty in Saturday's win. Fans were probably happy to get out of Providence's rink in under two hours (1:58 time of game), and Nick Petrecki was probably disappointed.
5. COLORADO COLLEGE
Senior forward Mike Testwuide scored a goal at St. Cloud State Friday and added a goal and an assist against the Huskies Saturday. He's recorded at least one goal in six of the Tigers' last eight games.
Yale scored the last four goals of the game in a 7-4 win over Quinnipiac that featured five lead changes. Denny Kearney and Sean Backman scored in a span of 63 seconds to break a 4-4 tie in the last five minutes of the third period.
The Badger Showdown at the Kohl Center Jan. 2-3 should be a terrific weekend of hockey as the hosts are joined by two teams rated in the top 15 of these very Power Rankings, Yale and Ferris State, and a vastly improved Merrimack squad.
8. NORTH DAKOTA
The Fighting Sioux gave up more than two goals once in their nine games en route to a 7-1-1 start. They've allowed three or more goals six times in the nine games since and are 2-5-2 in that stretch.
The Bobcats scuffled a bit in a three-game winless streak following eight consecutive wins, but got on track with a 5-2 win Saturday that featured five different goal scorers.
10. BEMIDJI STATE
The two losses to visiting Minnesota State this past weekend extended the Beavers' losing streak against the Mavericks to six in a row. BSU's last win in the series was a 3-2 decision in Mankato on Nov. 4, 2006.
For the rest of the top 20 for this week's Inside College Hockey Power Rankings, click here.